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Layoffs And Cutbacks at PBS NewsHour (NYT)
The PBS NewsHour, the signature nightly newscast on public television, is planning its first significant round of layoffs in nearly two decades. Because of declines in support from corporate sponsors, the show’s producer, MacNeil/Lehrer Productions, will close the two offices it has outside of the Washington area — in Denver and San Francisco — and lay off most of the employees there. The company, which is based in Arlington, Va., will also eliminate several of what it calls “noncritical production positions” at its main office. TVNewser None of the affected staffers were named in the email, but TVNewser hears that one of those departing is San Francisco correspondent Spencer Michels, who started reporting for the program 30 years ago. While the program will still maintain in-house crews, the NewsHour will rely more on freelance contributions going forward. Poynter / MediaWire “We believe the staff restructuring and production changes, along with continuing Web investment, will make us stronger and enable us to be more effective and nimble,” NewsHour public relations manager Anne Bell writes in an email to Poynter. Deadline Hollywood It will be the show’s first major round of layoffs since the mid-‘90s.
Posts Tagged ‘PBS’
Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp is the latest local athlete to pay a visit to Sesame Street, appearing on the iconic children’s show Thursday.
And since the kid inside of you is wondering, the word of the day was attach.
As in I hope the surgeon who performed offseason shoulder surgery on Kemp made sure to attach it back to his body.
[H/T Big League Stew]
PBS doesn’t believe in Matthew’s theory that you only live once (YOLO).
“Given the unfortunate news reported today, effective immediately, Fred Willard no longer will be involved with the Market Warriors series,” PBS said in a statement.
Willard’s camp fired back, denying that the 72-year-old was doing anything inappropriate.
“With all due respect to the individual officer, our belief is that Fred did nothing in any violation of any law,” Willard’s lawyer, Paul Takakjian, told TMZ.com.
The LA Times is reporting that public television station KCET is in talks to sell their historic Sunset Boulevard studio to the Church of Scientology. The Los Feliz studio dates back to 1912, and was once the home of Monogram Pictures and Allied Artists. According to the LA Times, the Sunset Blvd. property has an assessed value of $14.1 million. KCET responded to the rumors with a post on the station website:
We would like to respond to the erroneous information being circulated about KCET. Here is the truth: KCET is NOT being sold. We are firmly committed to being Southern California’s independent public TV station.
I thought you might want to know that despite five letters threatening to sue us (from Wendy McCaw‘s attorney Barry Cappello), we are releasing Citizen McCaw to Public Television. The first broadcast will be on KRCB Channel 22 in the Bay Area this coming Sunday, November 4 at 8 PM. It’s a great time slot.
More PBS stations will carry in 2009. The cover of KRCB’s program guide is attached as is one of Cappello’s letters. We ignored Cappello and have continued to move ahead.
Award Winners: Several local artists and researchers were among those listed as this year’s MacArthur awards winners. The LAT did a great job localizing even the least local of the winners: “Also locally, Carol Sauvion and Kyra Thomson, the Los Angeles-based executive producers of the 2007 PBS documentary series Craft in America: Memory, Landscape, Community, can celebrate that one of the artists featured in the series, 63-year-old fiber artist of North Carolina, is one of this year’s fellows.”
PBS is developing an sure-fire pledge-break money spinning series–On Record: The Soundtrack of Our Lives, an eight-hour series tracing the history of recorded music and its impact on popular culture, (or at least on Baby Boomers, PBS’s target audience.) Series should air in 2010. Legendary Beatles producer George Martin hosts, and Kevin Spacey, who once played Bobby Darrin, is the narrator.
Fastlane Entertainment has signed a deal for the life story of Carl Perkins. Paul McCartney is on-board as well.
Frank Sinatra will be saluted in May via music, movies and the U.S. Postal Service in commemoration of the 10th anniversary of his death. Reprise Records releases Nothing But the Best, Turner Classics will air Sinatra’s films, and the Post Office issues a commemorative stamp.
And Sunday’s Grammys line-up includes a number of one of a kind duets and trios including the just announced Cornerstone of Rock performance by John Fogerty, Jerry Lee Lewis and Little Richard, as well as Alicia Keys and a holographic Frank Sinatra.
TV Guide Network added Lawrence Zarian aka The Fashion Guy, to co-host The Fashion Team, the weekly one-hour talk series that airs Sundays at 7p, if anyone is actually watching. The Fashion Gay would be a great moniker.
Farmers Almanac TV, the national PBS show based by the nearly 200-year old Farmer’s Almanac brand, chose urban gardening expert, Patti Moreno to host the series. Currently, the show airs on 90% of the nation’s public television stations, but not here. (EIC Judson Hale’s autobiography is fascinating, by the way.)
Sci Fi Channel ordered a new reality project called Run for Money, based on a Japanese show from Fuji Television. Contestants try to stay alive while “hunted”. Japanese TV also features breast milk squirting contests.
IFC offers a new series created by Reebok Entertainment, which is really one long commercial for the brand. Framed lets a Hollywood celebrity hang out with a sports figure, who just happens to endorse Reebok. Series debuts December 14 with the pairing of NBA All-Star Baron Davis and television and actress Emmanuelle Chriqui (Sloan on Entourage), both wearing Reeboks.
Felica Devers, a longtime Hollywoodphile-turned-segment-producer, has launched HerHollywood.com.
The new site is aimed at women “working and desiring to work in the film and television fields,” and Devers hopes it morphs into an online community of industry women with Hollywood news and a vibrant job board.
Devers told FBLA the site is a natural extension of her love for all things Hollywood.
PBS won’t be airing Islam Vs. Islamists, and the blame is flying. The documentary took a look at the plight of moderate Muslims who are silenced by Islamic extremists. WETA commissioned the doc. as part of the America at a Crossroads series.
Frank Gaffney Jr., founder of the Center for Security Policy, was a partner of producer Martyn Burke. Burke says he was ordered to fire Gaffney and another co-producer, Alex Alexiev, also affiliated with the think tank. Burke claims WETA tried being to censor the film and cut out a segment featuring Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, chairman of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy. WETA hired an advisor Aminah Beverly McCloud who admires Louis Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam,a regular beneficiary of extremist Wahabi largesse.
She showed rough-cut segments to Nation of Islam officials, who threatened to sue.
Jeff Bieber, WETA’s executive producer for Crossroads, said that the film was yanked because of “serious structural problems (and)…was irresponsible because the writing was alarmist, and it wasn’t fair.”
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