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HLN

Katherine Green Leaving HLN

katherine green hlnKatherine Green is stepping down as senior vice president and managing editor of HLN, TVNewser has learned. Green, who has a second child on the way, wants “to be a full-time mom before deciding her next move,” general manager Albie Hecht announced to HLN staffers Monday.

“I’d like to thank Katherine for her dedication, passion and leadership. Since joining HLN nearly two years ago, she quickly became an integral part of the executive team that oversaw some of HLN’s biggest ratings successes in its history,” Hecht wrote. “Please join me in wishing Katherine all the best.”

Green joined HLN in 2011 after three years at CNN International, where she was the senior vice president and and general manager. Her departure from HLN comes as the network attempts to reposition itself within the cable news landscape, recently announcing programming changes to its daytime and primetime shows.

The full note from Hecht is after the jump. Read more

Kyra Phillips Filling In On ‘CNN Newsroom’

kyra phillips cnn

As HLN prepares for major programming changes next week, HLN anchor Kyra Phillips has popped up on sister network CNN, filling in for Brooke Baldwin from 2-4pmET both today and Friday.

Phillips spent 13 years at CNN before shifting to HLN as the anchor of “Raising America” last year. “Raising America” is one of two shows HLN is canceling as it overhauls its daytime and early evening lineup. When the changes were announced, a spokesperson for HLN told TVNewser that an announcement about a new role for Phillips was forthcoming.

Under HLN’s new programming lineup, a repeat of “Showbiz Tonight” takes the place of “Raising America” at 12pmET.

Layoffs at HLN as Network Plans Major Programming Changes

hlnlogoJust six weeks after taking over as general manager of HLN, Albie Hecht is instituting sweeping programming changes in daytime and primetime that will lead to layoffs at the network.

“Raising America,” the 12pmET show anchored by Kyra Phillips, and “Evening Express,” the 5pmET program anchored by Ryan Smith, will both be cancelled. A spokesperson from HLN said announcements about new roles for Phillips and Smith are forthcoming.

Beginning November 18, the shows will be replaced by a four-hour block of “News Now” from 1pm to 5pmET, anchored by a rotation of Mike Galanos, Susan Hendricks, Christi Paul and Lynn Berry.

A spokesperson for the network declined to comment on the number of people that will be affected by the layoffs, noting employees will be able to apply for open jobs internally and externally.

“While change is necessary to evolve HLN, it is also difficult. A handful of our family members will be impacted by today’s news,” Hecht wrote in a memo to HLN staffers this afternoon. “I know that I speak for all of us when I offer a heartfelt thank you and my sincere appreciation for their commitment.”

The memo from Hecht, which includes the network’s new programming lineup, is after the jump. Read more

October 2013 Ratings: HLN Fourth in Primetime, Total Day

HLN continues to struggle to find an audience when there’s no major trial, placing fourth behind Fox News, CNN and MSNBC this month. The network was down across the board year-over-year.

The ratings for August 2013 (Nielsen Live + Same Day data):

  • Primetime (Mon-Sun): 284,000 Total Viewers / 87,000 A25-54
  • Total Day (Mon-Sun): 209,000 Total Viewers / 72,000 A25-54

In total day, HLN was down -4% in total viewers and -14% in A25-54 viewers compared to the same month last year. In primetime, the network was flat in total viewers and down -8% in the demo.

Nancy Grace” and “Jane Velez-Mitchell” were the network’s top programs for the month. Grace’s program averaged 272,000 total viewers and 86,000 A25-54 viewers, and Velez-Mitchell’s program averaged 208,000 and 72,000 viewers, respectively.

The CNN Ticker: Promotions, Amanpour, Upwave

  • HLN has announced the shows that will make up its “Upwave” programming block. They include two cooking shows (including one hosted by “Top Chef” winner Richard Blais. Details after the jump.

Read more

Q3 2013 Ratings: HLN Up Double Digits For Third Straight Quarter

Despite slipping back to fourth place for the third quarter of 2013, HLN was the only cable news network to grow in both total day and primetime, posting double-digit increases compared to the third quarter of 2012. This is the third straight quarter HLN is up double digits.

The ratings for Q3 2013 (Nielsen Live + Same Day data):

  • Primetime (Mon-Sun): 365,000 Total Viewers / 136,000 A25-54
  • Total Day (Mon-Sun): 285,000 Total Viewers / 113,000 A25-54

Compared to the year-ago quarter, HLN is up +20% in total viewers and +15% in A25-54 viewers in total day. In primetime, the network is up +17% and up +24%, respectively.

Every HLN program between 2pm and 7pm was up more than +70% in the A25-54 demographic year-over-year. The daytime programming block (9am-5pm) topped MSNBC by +13% in the demo for the quarter.

More from HLN after the jump. Read more

HLN Anchor Kyra Phillips Honored

KyraPhillips2HLN anchor Kyra Phillips received the Quincy Jones Exceptional Advocacy Award for her support of those with disabilities Saturday night at a gala event in Denver. Phillips and husband, Fox News anchor John Roberts also emceed the event which supports the Global Down Syndrome Foundation.

Phillips has been an advocate for those with disabilities for more than 20 years, beginning when she was a local TV news reporter and met a young man named Jimmy who was competing in the Wisconsin Special Olympics. She later became a spokesperson for the group. Last week, as part of her HLN show “Raising America,” Phillips set up a call to action for awareness and penned this article on Huffington Post.

During the gala, NFL hall-of-famer Eric Dickerson, model Beverly Johnson, and actor John C. McGinley (pictured, above, with Phillips) walked the runway along with 20 models with Down syndrome at the “Be Beautiful, Be Yourself Fashion Show.”

In the gallery below, Phillips is pictured with Deondra Dixon, an ambassador of the Global Down Syndrome Foundation, and the sister of actor Jamie Foxx.

(Photos: Jensen Sutta)

TruTV Ending ‘In Session’ Trial Coverage

InSessionIt is the end of an era at truTV, as its daytime trial coverage will formally end on the channel starting Monday, September 30. “In Session,” truTV’s daytime trial programming, will have its last day on truTV be Friday, a spokesperson confirms to TVNewser.

Starting Monday, the “In Session” block will instead feature longform crime programming from its library under the banner “In Session Presents…”

The reasoning for the latest change is ”to provide a better flow into the rest of truTV’s daytime lineup,” which has programming largely incongruous with the courtroom coverage.

“In Session” faced cutbacks in March of this year, with a handful of “In Session” production staffers laid off. It had previously been a live, six-hour weekday block of trial programming, but was cut to a two-hour taped format, airing from 9-11 AM, and anchored by Vinnie Politan. Sister network HLN assumed production responsibilities for the block in 2009.

“In Session” had been the last vestige of Court TV, which Turner Broadcasting re-branded as truTV in 2008. Even as truTV itself pivoted from being a channel about real-life stories to a channel with pawn shop reality shows and hidden camera prank programs, “In Session” remained, in part to fill demand for daytime courtroom programming, and in part to fulfill contractual obligations with distributors.

“In Session” viewers are being directed to HLN for their trial coverage fix, although with new leadership there, the future of TV court coverage could be in flux soon.

Dr. Drew Pinsky Reveals That He Had Prostate Cancer

HLN host Dr. Drew Pinsky revealed in a column on HLNTV.com and on his program last night that he recently had prostate cancer, but that he is now cancer-free after undergoing treatment. After revealing the news, Pinsky was grilled on his show by a panel of his regular guests.

“You feel alone, it is a sinking, sinking feeling,” Pinsky said. “But I am a physician, so I kinda knew what it meant, I could just imagine how horrible it must feel for the average person when you get that C-word.”

WATCH:

This morning, Pinsky appeared on CNN’s “New Day” and “Dr. Oz” to talk about the diagnosis and treatment.

Hiring Of Albie Hecht Portends Big Changes At HLN

hln logo_304x200With the addition of TV creative executive Albie Hecht this week, CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker is sending a message: changes will be coming to CNN’s sister channel.

Unlike CNN, which has a clear news brand, HLN has never really had an identity. It launched as a place where people could tune in and always get the latest news, even when CNN was covering politics or speeches, or was airing a documentary. More recently, HLN has shifted to become something of a new Court TV, covering trials all day long, and analyzing them by night.

Last month, HLN announced that it would be adding health, wellness and cooking shows to its lineup. In other words, HLN is clearly shifting.

Hecht is the guy Zucker wants leading that shift. A well-known executive, Hecht became known as a skilled brander at MTV Networks, where he successfully turned The Nashville Network into Spike TV, and ran Nickelodeon when it was at a crossroads, developing and overseeing “Blue’s Clues,” “Dora the Explorer” and the juggernaut that is “Spongebob Squarepants.”

At his production company, Worldwide Biggies, he led the production of TV shows like “The Naked Brothers Band” and live events like the Spike TV Video Game Awards.

The big question is what Hecht and Zucker’s grand vision is for HLN. A little (but well connected) birdy at a cable entertainment network suggests that HLN’s future is as a nonfiction lifestyle network for women, akin to OWN. Food shows and health and wellness programs would fit in to that genre. So would some courtroom programs, which skew heavily female.

In other words, a cable channel that looks more like the later hours of “Good Morning America” and “Today,” rather than their newsy first hours.

Read more

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