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Posts Tagged ‘Ernie Anastos’

Former Staffer Alleges a String of Poor Decisions Made By Fox 5 Management

The changes at WNYW/Channel 5 since last July could fill a book. While it has become a revolving door in the evening, one constant has been the “other anchor.”

That would be Dari Alexander, who remains on set at 5 and 10 p.m., no matter if it’s with Ernie Anastos, Greg Kelly, or Steve Lacy. Readers of FishbowlNY have been leaving comments since the summertime anchor debacle about her ability.

Related: FishbowlNY, Major Anchor Changes Come to Fox 5

For example, last week, Alexander was caught inadvertently calling “sitting shiva” for Mayor Ed Koch as “shitting” shiva.

That led to these remarks on the posting:

Dari seems like a nice person, but speaking strictly on her work, she is easily the worst anchor in NYC. Completely [miscast].

Sad to say, she is horrible!

The sentiment about Alexander extends well beyond a handful of disgruntled viewers.

A former colleague who worked with Alexander tells FishbowlNY that her work ethic was non-existent.

“I’ve never worked with anybody who does less preparation before she gets on the air.” [She] seems to not really care where the show is going next or what’s really happening. [Alexander] just seems to be absolutely unaffected and oblivious to the consequences of that,” the former colleague says. “It was so strange. I had never worked with anybody like that.”

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WNYW Anchor Dari Alexander’s Unfortunate ‘Sitting Shiva’ Misspeak

The 10 p.m. newscast begins. Steve Lacy and Dari Alexander open the broadcast recapping yesterday’s funeral of former Mayor Ed Koch. Before Linda Schmidt, the first live reporter begins, Alexander introduces her at Gracie Mansion, the place where the Koch family, and Mayor Bloomberg will be sitting shiva today.

Related: FishbowlNY, Memories of Longtime Media Favorite, Mayor Ed Koch

Instead, the sacred and solemn ritual of Judaism was reduced to ridicule.

Alexander said the family will be “shitting” shiva. Like speaking a foreign language, which it probably was, Alexander slowly corrected to “sitting.” Another deep pause brought “shiva,” a phrase, even said correctly, appeared to be coming from her lips for the first time.

Alexander has been criticized at times with her different on-air partners. With previous night time co-anchor Greg Kelly, Alexander’s cell phone went off during the broadcast. It caused an awkward, embarrassing moment for her and viewers.

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WPIX Reporter Magee Hickey Channels Her Mom to Honor Her Father at Annual Cabaret Event

For the third straight year, veteran reporter Magee Hickey is gathering many colleagues for a musical fundraiser.

Hickey is giving back to the community in a personal way. Money raised will support the Lawrence F. Hickey Center for Child Development in the Bronx, part of Astor Services. Students attending that Dyre Avenue school range in age from three and five.

Hickey’s late father co-founded the school. The senior Hickey died three years ago at age 91, just weeks before the first fund-raising event.

“We close each show singing a song he loved, The Very Thought of You,” Hickey says.

Her dad wasn’t an educator. His background was in concrete.

“He developed the property in the Bronx for this school,” Hickey says.

Mr. Hickey’s “major” may have been construction, but he earned a “minor” in altruism. The elder Hickey was head of his church’s parish council and neighborhood coalition for shelter.

“A nun from a nearby school asked for his help in the building because it was a hole in the wall, and they knew my father had a history in construction,” Hickey recalls. “So he started volunteering at that school [Lexington Avenue and 67th Street] and then word spread that there was this Larry Hickey who liked to help out at special needs schools.”

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WNYW Pulls Plug on Greg Kelly as Lead Anchor; Steve Lacy to Take Over

New face of Fox 5 News at night

Fox executives are apparently wiping egg from their faces. FishbowlNY has learned that Greg Kelly is being yanked as 6 and 10 p.m. anchor. It’s an embarrassing move for management to be sure. We’re told that Kelly will return to his Good Day New York anchor duties alongside Rosanna Scotto. In turn, Dave Price, who succeeded Kelly on Good Dayhas been shifted to the early morning broadcast starting at 4:30will be leaving the station.

The anchor carousel doesn’t stop there.

Steve Lacy (left), the current Good Day Early Call anchor, is next to get his shot at the high-profile nighttime newscasts. Like Kelly, Lacy will solo the 6 p.m. and then join Dari Alexander for the late evening broadcast. Lacy joined Channel 5 in August 2011.

Update: TVSpy has more details on the changes. Price, (right) who asked to be let out of his contract early, says, “I had a great experience returning to FOX 5 but it is time to look for opportunities outside WNYW. I love Rosanna and the gang and wish them all the best.”

Kelly was lambasted for bringing his morning show attitude to the more serious nighttime setting. Weeks after Kelly went from sunrise to sunset, FishbowlNY readers made their case in a pair of polls pushing for his return to mornings, while Price would be axed.

All of the changes take effect tomorrow.

2012: The FishbowlNY Year in Review

It was a year that featured the FM band being rediscovered like the progressive music era of the late 1960s.

ESPN took the lead in April by moving (after simulcasting) WEPN/1050 to 98.7. The 1050 position has since become New York’s only 24-hour Spanish sports talk outlet.

It was a surprise to no one, that CBS Radio expedited its quest for an FM station, when Merlin’s ill-fated news operation, turned Alternative Rocker, became available in October. WFAN is now simulcast on 660 and 101.9.

As for Merlin, it yanked the 24-hour FM news attempt (WEMP) in July–less than a year after it started. Merlin returned to its previous format held by Emmis, and continuing the “Bobby Ewing shower scene” theme, management even resurrected the WRXP call letters.

Other radio doings during 2012, include Geraldo Rivera turning to the medium early in 2012 at WABC. By summertime, the veteran TV host was syndicated to Cumulus stations nationwide.

In August, Clear Channel acquired WOR. As the FCC signed off on the deal, two shows were canceled last week, Dr Joy Browne and Governor David Paterson. This remains a fluid story heading into 2013.

TV also had its share of shakeups. In certain instances you could say this was management’s version of “Out with old and in the new.”

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Staying ‘Positive,’ Ernie Anastos Expands His New Show

Whether you know Ernie Anastos from his anchoring, met him once at an appearance, or are a longtime acquaintance, you would know that having a positive outlook could be described as his “M.O.”

That character trait has served Anastos well in the dog-eat-dog business of TV news for more than 35 years. Anastos needed all of his inner-strength in 2012, as we’ve well documented, when he was lifted from the 10 p.m. newscast on WNYW. It marked the legendary anchor’s first time being cut from his station’s late news since arriving here in 1978.

But ever-positive, the multiple Emmy Award recipiant has forged ahead. Anastos, who still anchors the 5 p.m. with Dari Alexander, is putting more focus on his pet project, Positively Ernie. You’ve seen Anastos’ show as a number of specials that began in May 2011. Now, it’s a regular part of the Channel 5 lineup, 5:30 p.m. Saturdays. He began a month-long series last weekend.

“I am working on putting the program back on for a 13-week cycle starting next March with sponsor commitments,” Anastos tells FishbowlNY. “So far, GOYA Foods, Con Edison and Red Apple/Gristedes Supermarkets have given the show great advertising support.”

Anastos, who is also a gifted movitational speaker, knows how to tap into the ways to enrich and enhance people’s lives. One feature each week is with regular guest Dr. Mehmet Oz. In a typical episode, he’d discuss how to improve health and lifestyle for the whole family, or share some secrets of setting goals for living better and longer.

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WNYW’s Dari Alexander and the Rotating Anchor Chairs

Call it musical chairs without the music! WNYW/Channel 5 anchor Dari Alexander is part of the station’s 5 p.m. and 10 p.m. newscasts. She co-anchors the early broadcast with market veteran Ernie Anastos, and the late news with Greg Kelly.

That part is known since the major anchor shifts in July. But more subtle is where Alexander places herself, and why.

Viewers of the 5 p.m. see no changes–Alexander in her familiar spot next to Anastos on her (TV) right. However, take a look at the 10 p.m., where Kelly replaced Anastos. Instead of seeing Kelly taking Anastos’ seat, it’s Alexander who’s jumping into her on-air partner’s spot.

Two factors could be at play here. First, it would appear that Fox management is trying in subliminal fashion to take “pressure” off Kelly. Grabbing Anastos’ seat, still used at 5 p.m., could be viewed as “stealing” his job.

But now we’re faced with an TV news anomaly. When was the last time an anchor sat in different positions for multiple newscasts? It’s a rare occurrence, if it happens at all.

Another point to note: on all of the major newscasts the male anchor is sitting on the left, whether it be Maurice DuBois, Chuck Scarborough, or Bill Ritter. (One exception: WNBC’s Today in New York has Darlene Rodriguez on the left, alongside Michael Gargiulo.)

A WNYW spokesperson had no comment to FishbowlNY on the record.

Fox Execs Move to Fix Good Day New York

The honeymoon for Dave Price appears to be over at Channel 5. A person with knowledge of the situation tells FishbowlNY that Sharri Berg, the SVP of the Fox Television Stations Group, visited WNYW recently to talk about Good Day New York.

The source says, Berg was joined by a consultant to help fix the morning broadcast. Price took over the Good Day co-hosting in early July with Rosanna Scotto, after Greg Kelly was promoted to night side. Ernie Anastos lost the high-profile 10 p.m. newscast.

Price, a one-time Good Day weather anchor, has felt the brunt of the criticism since his WNYW return.

Last week, our poll found a whopping 50-point margin of respondents wanted Price ousted in favor of Kelly.

Beyond that, Fox is scrambling to put out the fire, as the Scotto/Price chemistry has been sorely lacking. That, in turn, has already translated into ratings for rival WPIX, either winning key demos, or coming close, in the typically quiet July sweeps period.

This is not the first time since the July changes that Fox executives met with WNYW management. We reported two weeks after the anchor swap that meetings were held for Kelly “damage control.”

FishbowlNY Poll: Readers Again Make Case for Dave Price’s Exodus From Good Day New York

FishbowlNY readers and WNYW viewers have decided for the second time this month that Dave Price should be dropped from Good Day New York. And it should be emphasized, those same readers don’t just want him replaced by anyone, they want Greg Kelly back in mornings alongside Rosanna Scotto.

In our latest poll that started two weeks ago, we asked for an opinion of Price’s performance on Good Day.

Mitt Romney or President Obama would be thrilled being on the receiving end of staggering results like this.

Price is certainly no Howard Cosell, but if our (unscientific) poll is any indication, viewers either love him or hate him.

With a 50 percent landslide, 63 percent of our voters choose,”Bring back Greg!” Delving deeper, we find even more of an “anti-Price” wave. Another 12 percent “pulled the lever” for our poll choice, “Bad choice by Channel 5, he shouldn’t be a morning news anchor!” That means 3/4 of the poll takers want Price out, with or without Kelly returning to the seat.

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FishbowlNY Poll: Readers Emphatically Want Greg Kelly Back on Good Day New York

Kelly at 10 p.m. with back-up anchor Sharon Crowley

The ballots are in, although the voting never officially ended. And it’s bad news for Greg Kelly, but worse news for WNYW.

Our FishbowlNY poll posted two weeks ago allowed readers and viewers to tell it to us straight–What do you think of Kelly as an evening anchor?

Presumably you know that Kelly started in July as Channel 5′s lead anchor. It was the final piece of a major swarm of activity that included Dave Price returning to WNYW as Good Day New York anchor, and Ernie Anastos being bounced from the 10 p.m. (He remains on the 5 p.m. with Dari Alexander).

By a nearly 2 to 1 margin, our respondents want Kelly back where he “belongs”: mornings. A whopping 45 percent of poll takers want the Kelly and Rosanna Scotto as a team again on Good Day. This month would have been their fourth anniversary as on-air “husband and wife.”

But those who responded to the poll were split on “Kelly After Dark,” as 24 percent chose, “He’s Great!” Another 20 percent clicked on the “Bring Back Ernie!” option. We’re not certain, though, how many of the 45 percent wanting Kelly switched to his original “home base” would in fact like Anastos to reclaim is previous 10 p.m. duties.

Now it’s time to take our poll about Dave Price, after the jump.
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