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Posts Tagged ‘CBS’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Fager to Step Down, Return to 60 Minutes | WaPo, Kindle Partner Up

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Jeff Fager Stepping Down as Chairman of CBS News, Returns Full Time to 60 Minutes (TVNewser)
Jeff Fager is leaving his role as chairman of CBS News and turning his “full attention” to 60 Minutes. FishbowlDC Fager served as CBS News’ chairman for four years, and had worked as the executive producer of 60 Minutes for seven years before that. THR / The Live Feed Fager has also extended his current contract as executive producer through 2019. As for a replacement, president David Rhodes now assumes sole leadership of CBS News. Fager assumed the role of chairman at a pivotal time for CBS, on the eve of Katie Couric’s exit from the CBS Evening News. June of 2011 saw current anchor, and longtime 60 Minutes correspondent, Scott Pelley, assume the role of lead anchor for the nightly news telecast. NYT CBS cast the moves as an orderly transition that was set in motion four years ago when Leslie Moonves, the CBS chief executive, asked Fager to take over supervision of the news division while remaining as executive producer of 60 Minutes. In his own memo, Fager said of Rhodes, “I hired him almost four years ago with this moment in mind, and he has exceeded all expectations.” Capital New York Fager’s dual roles as chairman of CBS News and E.P. of 60 Minutes did lead to some controversy. Last year, a flawed report about the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya led to an internal investigation and the suspension of Lara Logan, who has since returned to the network.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Netflix Ups Global Expansion | Turner, CBS Prep for Dish Blackout

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Netflix to Expand to Australia, New Zealand (THR)
Netflix is continuing its march worldwide, unveiling plans on Tuesday to expand to Australia and New Zealand. The streaming service said that it will expand to those countries in March 2015. Variety Pricing for a subscription to Netflix in the countries will be announced “at a later date.” In a press release, Netflix said the Australia and New Zealand collection will include upcoming original series Marco Polo, animated BoJack Horseman and kids titles including DreamWorks Animation’s All Hail King Julien. Movies and TV shows will be available in high definition and in 4K where possible. GigaOM The launch will bring the number of countries Netflix is available in to more than 50 and the announcement is not unexpected: Netflix CFO David Wells said earlier this month that the company plans a “sizeable expansion” for 2015 and Netflix has reportedly been preparing to enter Australia by hiring local agencies for a launch campaign. WSJ He said over the next three to five years, Netflix believes it is possible to generate 50 percent of its revenues from countries outside the U.S., up from about 28 percent now. Assuming that Netflix signs up 10 percent of broadband households outside the U.S., Wells says, it is possible for the company to have about 50 million to 60 million non-U.S. subscribers or even more. The company had 14.4 million international paying customers at the end of the third quarter, compared with 36.3 million U.S. customers. Deadline The initiative positions Netflix for an interesting fight: Only about 30 percent of Australian households subscribe to pay TV, far less than in the U.S. and even less than in the U.K., where about half subscribe. Australia’s leading distributor, Foxtel, expected to see some competition from streaming services and recently halved the price of its basic service.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Horowitz Out at NBC News | Charles Champlin Dies at 88

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Jamie Horowitz Out at NBC News (TVNewser)
Jamie Horowitz, the recently-hired SVP and GM of the Today show, is no longer with NBC News. A source tells us Horowitz and his boss, NBC News president Deborah Turness, were not seeing eye to eye, leading to Horowitz’s departure from the network late Monday. THR / The Live Feed Originally set to join the network in December, Horowitz started taking meetings at Today in September, overseeing the network’s flagship morning show. Variety “He’s a talented producer and executive, but, together, he and I have come to the conclusion that this is not the right fit,” Turness said in a memo to staffers. In the wake of Horowitz’ departure, Turness said, she will continue working closely with Don Nash, the executive producer of Today, and Jen Brown, the vice president and general manager of Today.com. She expects to find a new general manager of Today, she said. Deadline Hollywood In August, NBC agreed to let Bill Wolff, VP primetime programs at MSNBC and executive producer of The Rachel Maddow Show, out of his contract to move to ABC, in order to get that parent company to allow top ESPN programmer Horowitz take the helm at Today. Before joining ESPN, Horowitz worked at NBC Sports; he started his TV career as an NBC Olympics researcher. Turness came to the network from the U.K. in August 2013 to help turn around the news division’s once-dominant but now struggling franchises. NYT Early reports of new turbulence at Today were especially upsetting for NBC News because the show is the news division’s biggest profit center, and NBC has been touting a comeback in the ratings for the show, which has trailed ABC’s Good Morning America since Today lost a seemingly impregnable lead in the morning ratings in 2012. Turness has been portrayed as embattled in some reports, and Horowitz’s name surfaced quickly as a possible successor, despite his short tenure and the fact that he has no network news background.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: DWA, Hasbro Merger Talks End | The Onion Exploring Sale

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DreamWorks Animation, Hasbro End Merger Talks (THR)
Hasbro has called off merger negotiations with DreamWorks Animation, sources say. The deal chatter, which became public on Wednesday, appears to have been derailed in part by the performance of Hasbro’s stock and potentially the high price sought by DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg. WSJ News last week that the toy maker was in early acquisition talks with the film studio drove the two companies’ stocks in opposite directions. Hasbro investors sent the toy company’s share price down more than 4 percent on Thursday and nearly 2 percent on Friday, when they settled at $54.02 on Nasdaq. Adweek DreamWorks reportedly wanted $30 per share, a relatively steep incline for stock trading at roughly $22. NYT / DealBook Also playing a role was a negative private reaction by the Walt Disney Company, which comprises roughly 30 percent of Hasbro’s business through licenses for Star Wars, Marvel characters, Frozen and the Disney Princesses toy line. Variety Neither side has officially commented on why the talks fell apart, nor the potential of a deal. Hasbro follows recent conversations DWA has had to sell the toon studio. In September, it discussed such a sale with Japanese tech giant SoftBank, that also ended just days later.

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Mark Lisanti for the Awards Season Win

MatthewMcConaughey2013OscarsIf you read only one paragraph about 2014 film awards season this 2014 film awards season, let it be the following from Mark Lisanti‘s preview of tonight’s CBS-TV extravaganza:

The Hollywood Film Awards are not interested in filling four tiny onscreen boxes with the faces of disappointed losers mustering their acting skills to barely conceal their soul-crushing disappointment. The Hollywood Film Awards choose to go full-screen on that all-important fifth box, the one with the beaming winner in it, the one whose life has just been changed forever. Why trifle with a pointless list of also-rans when you can reallocate that precious time to celebrating the victorious? Nothing is more powerful than an idea, and the idea here is this: More winners.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: CBSN Launches Glitch-Free | Aereo to Downsize, Cut Staff

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CBS Launches Digital News Network CBSN (LostRemote)
After announcing a subscription-based streaming service, CBS launched an all-digital streaming news network, CBSN, on Thursday. So now you can watch live, anchored news whenever you want, for free. TVNewser It didn’t look like launch day at CBSN, and that’s a big achievement. Freed from the burden of launch day hoopla and high expectations, CBS News turned on its brand new live streaming news channel, and did so without a hitch. Capital New York The company is stressing that the move is not meant as a way into the 24-hour cable-news channel fray. “We are not endeavoring to start a cable news channel online,” CBS News president David Rhodes said. “We are trying to create something that is native for connected devices.” Those devices include laptops and PCs, smartphones and tablets, and, yes, Internet-connected TVs. The target audience: younger viewers, some of whom may not subscribe to a pay-TV service. THR The network — available on CBSNews.com, the CBS News app and connected TV devices such as Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Roku — will feature 15 hours of live, anchored coverage from 9 a.m. ET to midnight ET every weekday. The segments will be split into 60-minute blocks of live, updated news. CBS News special reports will be simulcast on CBSN during breaking news and content will also be fed in from CBS affiliate stations, CNET, CBSSports.com and Entertainment Tonight. New York Post The owner of CBS broadcast network, radio stations and Showtime missed the cable boom of the past decades but appears to be diving headfirst into a mobile future. Last month it joined with its affiliate partners to launch CBS All Access, a standalone digital platform for current and archived content.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: FNC Wins Election Night | CBS Launches Digital News Service

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Midterm Election TV Ratings: Fox News Tops Broadcast Nets, Beats Cablers Combined (TVNewser)
Fox News Channel was the most-watched network — on broadcast and on cable — during coverage of the midterm elections. Fox News beat CNN and MSNBC in both total viewers and the adults 25-54 demo, combined during primetime hours. Capital New York FNC, CNN and MSNBC were all down compared to the 2010 midterm elections, and CNN and MSNBC were also down compared to the 2006 midterms, which saw President Bush in his sixth year in office see the Democratic party take control in Congress. All told, an average of just over 10 million people watched the three cable news channels Tuesday night, with an average of nearly 13 million watching on broadcast TV. THR / The Live Feed Fox News Channel boasted a whopping average of 6.3 million viewers for all of primetime. Compared to the last four Tuesdays, FNC’s 1.516 million viewers in the core news demo of adults 25-54 was improved by 303 percent. CNN, which has been solidly in second place for the last six months, was up by 480 percent to 812,000. That left MSNBC in third. Coming off of a middling October, the net still surged 315 percent — albeit only netting 481,000 demo viewers. TVNewser In addition to online coverage, each of the Big 3 broadcast networks produced one-hour primetime midterm election specials at 10 p.m. According to Nielsen overnight time period data, CBS was the clear winner at 10 p.m., averaging 5.367 million viewers to NBC’s 4.270 million and ABC’s 3.507 million. AllFacebook On Election Day, 27 million U.S. Facebook users generated 85 million interactions — likes, shares and comments — including those who used the social network’s “I’m a Voter” feature.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Alibaba’s Jack Ma Eyes Lionsgate Stake | Terry Keenan Dies at 53

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Alibaba Eyeing 37 Percent Stake in Lionsgate (New York Post)
After getting a taste of The Hunger Games, Alibaba billionaire Jack Ma has an appetite for more. The Chinese Internet tycoon is hungering after Mark Rachesky’s 37.4 percent of Lionsgate, the studio behind the blockbuster film franchise. THR Hedge fund manager Rachesky, the chairman of Lionsgate and its biggest shareholder, is looking to unload his influential stake in the mini-studio. Variety A sale of his stake to Alibaba could be announced in November or perhaps sooner. Lionsgate and Alibaba reps declined to comment on the report. Rachesky and reps for Rachesky’s MHR Fund Management did not respond to requests for comment. New York-based MHR manages about $6 billion of capital. Deadline Hollywood Ma will be in Hollywood this week to talk with different studios. He already knows Lionsgate: Alibaba partnered with the studio this summer when it launched its Chinese subscription streaming service, Lionsgate Entertainment World, which features the studio’s movies and TV shows. Adweek China is the No. 2 film market in the world, making the convenience of online subscription content a natural fit for Alibaba’s e-commerce network. However, China is not a straightforward place to do business. Last month, Chinese regulators announced they would cap the amount of foreign TV programs local providers could stream to online subscribers.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: AMC Buys Stake in BBC America | CNN Announces High Profits

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AMC Networks Buys 49.9 Percent Stake in BBC America (TVNewser)
AMC Networks has agreed to purchase a 49.9 percent stake in BBC America from BBC Worldwide for $200 million. AMC Networks will look for greater distribution for BBC World News in the U.S. B&C BBC Worldwide will retain a 50.1 percent equity stake in the cable channel, while AMC Networks will have operational control of BBCA, including affiliate and advertising sales, though it will still be consistent with BBC’s editorial standards and policies. THR The cable networks company and the commercial arm of U.K. public broadcaster BBC announced the deal Thursday after reports of their talks first emerged over the summer. The channel airs such BBC favorites as Doctor Who, Sherlock, Top Gear and Planet Earth. AMC Networks operates the AMC, Sundance, WE tv and IFC channels, and can now add the so-far independent BBC America when it negotiates carriage fees, giving both partners increased leverage in talks with pay-TV operators. WSJ The deal comes as the biggest pay-TV distributors are consolidating, prompting analyst speculation that content players will also have to seek greater scale. Variety Executives at both companies portrayed the arrangement as one borne out of a desire to gain greater reach for premium content that attracts high-income audiences. The two sides have worked together in the recent past. The two have collaborated on series including Top of The Lake and The Honourable Woman as well as the coming program One Child. AMC Networks and BBC Television have agreed to continue to jointly pursue a number of content investment opportunities on a range of future projects, both through BBC America and other AMC Networks channels. BBC America is to be managed as a standalone asset within AMC’s portfolio.

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Ed Asner Explains How He Changed Up Lou Grant

LouGrantThe publication is called Smashing Interviews magazine. And certainly, Melissa Parker‘s Q&A with Ed Asner for the Birmingham, Alabama-based outlet lives up to that lofty title.

The record holder for male actor Emmy Awards covers a lot of topics. One of the conversation highlights involves how Asner transitioned from The Mary Tyler Moore Show to Lou Grant:

Asner: We continued to work on the [Lou Grant] first year, and finally I came to the realization that I was using my two older brothers as inspirations for the “Mary Tyler Moore Lou.” I realized in the different scripts that were being written, that same character would not work for me, and I began to plunge into myself to find that [less comedic] character of Lou in the hour show, and that’s what I came up with.

Parker: Very interesting.

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