I've held off longer than BBC News, but now I fear I must turn to this season's festive filler material.
There are concerns on the 6th floor of Broadcasting House that The Apprentice may have peaked - not in Auntie's top 40 shows of the year for the past two years. I've come across a pitch for something called The Apprentice DG, to run right across 2017 on BBC1. Lord Hall looks set to hang on for at least another financial year, but this proposal hopes to film 12 candidates bidding to fill his shoes from September 2018.
Every DG hopes to anoint his successor - part of the 'legacy', don't you know ? Lord Hall will be hoping for better luck than Mark Thompson, who pushed forward George Entwistle, only to watch him defenestrated with the quietly-crowing help of a largely dysfunctional management team that was Thommo's big legacy.
According to the pitch documents, Lord Hall will have at his side Anne Bulford, his trusted deputy, in the Margaret Mountford/Karren Brady role; and Tim Davie, playing the part filled by Nick Hewer/Claude Littner. This seems reasonable - Anne doesn't enjoy Select Committees, etc and Tim Davie can still earn more at Worldwide than the DG over the remaining part of his five year plan.
Most of The Apprentice DG candidates them will be lodged inside BH, ready to complete tasks at Lord Hall's bequest; others will be showing off outside. Some of the tasks will be real; there will be, as ever, daft team names, dodgy cvs and hopeless business plans; and you can guarantee growing tension between the candidates. Check in here over the next 12 days to meet them....