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Posts Tagged ‘Barbara Walters’

Barbara Walters Brings Back ‘Most Fascinating’ Special

Walters specialLast year was supposed to the final Barbara Walters‘ “10 Most Fascinating” special. But ABC has decided there are just too many fascinating people around not to do another one.

So Walters returns for the 2-hour special on Sunday, Dec. 14. Oprah Winfrey, Neil Patrick Harris, Chelsea Handler, and Scarlett Johansson have made the cut. Walters always save the No. 1 most fascinating person for the night of the special.

“[Y]ou never pass up the opportunity to interview Oprah, Neil, Chelsea, or Scarlett,” Walters says about returning for the 2014 edition.

The special is executive produced by Walters and Bill Geddie, who, until this summer was the co-executive producer of “The View.” Geddie also directs the 2014 “Most Fascinating” special.

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Kathie Lee Gifford Accepts Regis Philbin’s ‘Giant of Broadcasting’ Award

chuckTVNewser attended the 12th Annual Giants of Broadcasting luncheon in New York City today. Prominent members of the broadcasting, media and corporate communities attended the event, which honors distinguished leadership or performance in TV and radio.

“Today” show fourth hour co-host Kathie Lee Gifford spoke on behalf of her former “LIVE” partner, Regis Philbin, who could not accept his award in person.

She joked that Regis asked, “Am I’m not already a Giant of Broadcasting?” Chuck Scarborough longtime anchor of  WNBC’s “News 4 New York” was also honored and jokingly thanked NBC for “not firing me.”

Sylvester L. “Pat” Weaver, a pioneer who created the “Today” show and “The Tonight Show” among others, was honored posthumously. His daughter and Academy Award nominated actress Sigourney Weaver spoke on his behalf.

Other honorees included Judy Woodruff and Gwen Ifill – co-anchors and managing editors of PBS “NewsHour,” and Fred Silverman, former CBS, ABC, and NBC executive who brought some of the most iconic programs of the 1970s and 1980s to broadcast TV.

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The Afternoon Ticker: Panetta Book, CNN Suit, Walters Talks

  • Former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is making the TV rounds for his memoir “Worthy Fights.” His first morning interview went to Matt Lauer for “Today,” his first cable interview was with Gloria Borger on CNN, the first online interview is with Katie Couric for Yahoo! and his first primetime interview is with Bill O’Reilly tonight on Fox News.

  • Former CNN staffer Stanley Wilson has filed a $5 million wrongful termination lawsuit against Turner Broadcasting and his former boss. The 17-year CNN veteran, a Los Angeles-based field producer and writer, says he was discriminated against, defamed and retaliated against. Deadline has more.

  • ABC’s Barbara Walters is the featured speaker tonight at the John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. Walters, who celebrated her 85th birthday last week, was born in Boston. In her autobiography Audition, she wrote about having an affair in the 1970s with then-married Massachusetts Senator Edward Brooke.

‘The View’ Premieres With New Co-Hosts, Queen Barbara Walters

Walters QueenA revamped “The View” premiered this morning with its original co-executive producer sitting in a Queen’s throne getting doused with affection.

“Thank you my pals,” Barbara Walters said as co-hosts Whoopi Goldberg, Rosie O’Donnell, Nicolle Wallace, and Rosie Perez looked toward her throne.

“This is wonderful, but it’s unnecessary because of course you have my blessings,” Walters added. “By the way, I was told that I would have a crown,” she concluded, with an off-screen hand then bestowing her with one.

“Hello and welcome to the newer view,” Goldberg said to the audience as the show opened. A returning O’Donnell, not wearing shoes because of her sciatica, updated viewers on her heart attack two years ago and the surgery she had that saved her life. “I’m sitting here with three fabulous women and I’m loving life,” new co-host Rosie Perez said. “I am a Republican, we should get that out of the way,” Nicolle Wallace, former campaign communications adviser to Senator John McCain and Sarah Palin, said. “And I really like her, I swear to God!” O’Donnell responded to the audience’s applause.

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Joan Rivers Funeral: ‘I Have Never Seen Anything Like It’

KathieLeeHodaBarbara Walters, Diane Sawyer, Charlie Rose, Kathie Lee Gifford, and Hoda Kotb were among the TV newsers at yesterday’s funeral for Joan Rivers.

“I have never seen anything like it — full of love, full of laughter,” said Rose on “CBS This Morning. “Inside Edition” host Deborah Norville, who’s been friends with Rivers for 25 years, delivered a eulogy. On “Good Morning America” Norville told Robin Roberts, “The woman I knew was hilariously funny. An incredible practical joker. She was kind to the core and there through thick and thin.”

Said Gifford on “Today,” “I think it was the perfect combination between the profane and the sacred. Because Joan was like that. We all know the profane part of Joan, but there was a sacred part as well.”

Networks to Pay Tribute to Joan Rivers

JoanRiversFNC304Networks will remember legendary comedian Joan Rivers this weekend.

Tonight, the newsmagazines pay tribute. At 9pmET, NBC’s “Dateline” will present “Celebrating Joan Rivers.” The hour-long special, co-anchored by Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb, will feature tributes from Kathy Griffin, Dick Cavett, Donald Trump, Don Rickles, and Gilbert Gottfried.

An hour later at 10pmET, ABC’s “20/20″ will air “Joan Rivers: Living for the Laugh.”  The special, anchored by David Muir, will feature reporting from Barbara Walters, John Quinones, and Chris Connelly.

And on Sunday night, Fox News presents “Geraldo Rivera Reports: Joan Rivers” at 9pmET. Rivera will interview various guests close to Rivers and show clips from her comedy career. Rivers died yesterday at 81 a week after she stopped breathing during a throat procedure.

Joan Rivers Has Died. ‘Her Greatest Joy Was to Make People Laugh’

JoanRiversFNCComedian Joan Rivers has died. The news came from Rivers’ daughter, Melissa just before 3pmET.

Rivers, who was 81, stopped breathing while undergoing outpatient surgery in New York City a week ago today. She was rushed Mount Sinai Hospital and put on life support. Just yesterday, Melissa Rivers announced that her mother had been “moved out of intensive care and into a private room where she is being kept comfortable.” Melissa Rivers released this statement this afternoon:

It is with great sadness that I announce the death of my mother, Joan Rivers. She passed peacefully at 1:17pm surrounded by family and close friends. My son and I would like to thank the doctors, nurses, and staff of Mount Sinai Hospital for the amazing care they provided for my mother.

Cooper and I have found ourselves humbled by the outpouring of love, support, and prayers we have received from around the world. They have been heard and appreciated.

My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh. Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon.

Fox News and CNN have been in near non-stop coverage since 3pmET. Several New York local stations broke in with coverage.

Barbara Walters issued a statement about her friend: “No one loved life, laughter, and a good time more than Joan. We would have dinner and laugh and gossip and I always left the table smiling. She was a brassy, often outrageous, and hilarious performer who made millions laugh. In private, she was the picture of elegance and class. I will miss her.”

ABC Newsers Toast Ben Sherwood

SherwoodWaltersSherwoodAnchors

As Ben Sherwood heads West, his East Coast colleagues sent him off in style last night at the Nomad Hotel in New York’s Flatiron District. Sherwood, named co-president of Disney/ABC TV in March, is moving his family to Los Angeles.

Insiders tell us heartfelt toasts were given by Barbara Walters, Diane Sawyer, Robin Roberts, George Stephanopoulos, David Muir and Lara Spencer. Sherwood got a big laugh when he promised Stephanopoulos a reality show, detective comedy or both.

And there were gifts: Sherwood was given a framed golden headset to remind him of his days in the control room — with the label “break in case of emergency,” while the whole family got ABC News Extreme Weather Team jackets — with “Sherwood” embroidered on the back.

Sherwood’s had three stints with ABC News, starting in 1989 as a producer at “Primetime Live.” After a run at “NBC Nightly News,” Sherwood returned to ABC in 2004 for a two-year stint as EP of “Good Morning America.” Sherwood turned to writing, penning three best-sellers, one of which was turned into a major motion picture. In 2010, he returned to ABC as News president.

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Katie Couric Won’t Be Guest Hosting ‘Today’

Couric TodayThe New York Post says Katie Couric won’t be returning to “Today” after all during Savannah Guthrie‘s maternity leave.

We hear NBC offered one-day stints to Couric and other special guests, including Jane Pauley and Barbara Walters. But Couric turned it down, saying she wouldn’t accept a one-day role. Well-placed NBC sources say Couric insisted on a longer relationship of up to two weeks. One insider said, “Katie wanted a longer stint on ‘Today’ to help promote her Yahoo role. But it wasn’t what NBC had in mind, and they refused.”

Couric demurred when we asked her at Barbara Walters‘ going away party if a “Today” fill-in was in the cards. Couric appeared on the show last month, to talk about the upcoming Stand up to Cancer event, as well as her wedding. Couric, who co-hosted “Today” for 15 years, famously had a fill-in stint on rival “Good Morning America” in April 2012, when the two programs were neck and neck among morning show viewers.

Are CNNers Leading the Pack for ‘The View’ Co-Host Spots?

Cupp Hostin

It’s looking more like “The View” will have a cable news-infused makeover. First, as reported yesterday, MSNBC VP Bill Wolff is poised to take over as EP.

Now we’re hearing CNN “Crossfire” co-host S.E. Cupp and CNN legal analyst Sunny Hostin, who have already filled in on the show, have participated in private “chemistry tests” with returning co-host Rosie O’Donnell and sole-leftover host Whoopi Goldberg. TMZ reports O’Donnell and Cupp got into a “nasty” exchange over abortion during a test show yesterday. O’Donnell reportedly said she “didn’t want another Elisabeth Hasselbeck.”

“Chemistry tests were conducted yesterday with Whoopi and Rosie,” a show spokesperson tells TVNewser. “The chemistry tests were intended to be confidential.  Any names out there were not released by the network nor will they be. No decisions have been made and there is nothing to announce at this time.”

It’s been a busy week at the show: Cupp and Hostin guest hosted together on Wednesday. And yesterday also included the taping of Sherri Shepherd and Jenny McCarthy‘s final show, which will air Monday. Cupp was on CNN yesterday, from New York, around 3:45pmET, meaning the test show was likely conducted late morning/early afternoon. Also, Whoopi Goldberg was not a part of yesterday’s live show.

TMZ also reports Goldberg took a thinly-veiled shot at former co-host and original co-EP Barbara Walters:
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