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Posts Tagged ‘Bette Midler’

Joy Behar: New HLN Show “An Infusion Of Humor” During Serious Times

JBehar.jpgAsk Joy Behar how she got her new HLN gig, and she gives a simple answer. “They asked me to dance,” Behar jokes with TVNewser, “and I said, ‘Okay, I’ll dance with you guys!’”

Her boss, CNN Worldwide EVP Ken Jautz, is a little more specific. “She has a strong point of view, she’s an excellent conversationalist,” he says. “She’s a genuine star.”

The Joy Behar Show debuts tomorrow at 9pmET, part of a primetime lineup dominated by women hosts (think Nancy Grace and Jane Velez-Mitchell) who provide HLN with what Jautz calls “point-of-view programming.”

Opinion, Jautz says, positions the 27 year-old HLN as “something different from CNN” in order to attract “different audience niches.” He’s confident that HLN’s ratings growth — its average of 597,000 prime time viewers this year has more than tripled since 2004, a boost greater than “we had dared hope for”, says Jautz — has not drawn viewers away from its sister cabler. Jautz cites internal research showing “little overlap” among those who watch the two networks.

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Party For Joy. Walters, Whoopi and More Gather at the Oak Room

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“The View” co-hosts Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar and Barabara Walters celebrate Behar’s new HLN show at the Plaza Hotel last night.

The famed Oak Room at New York’s Plaza Hotel was the setting for a party last night to celebrate the launch of HLN’s “The Joy Behar Show“, premiering Tuesday at 9pmET. The party, thrown by Behar’s “The View” co-host Barbara Walters, was packed with boldface names from news and entertainment and from all the networks.

In introducing Behar, Walters joked about her new show, “We originally thought it was going to go to Starr Jones. Then we were sure it was going to be Rosie [O'Donnell]. But finally, finally it is Joy.”

Behar thanked Walters and her “new boss” at HLN, CNN Worldwide EVP, Ken Jautz. “He found me. I was a poor little girl on a network show, trying to get a word in edgewise.”

Behar tells us she is a little nervous, but more excited about the new show. Her first guest, was Johnny Carson‘s last guest: Bette Midler.

Behar’s soon to be HLN colleagues were all there: Nancy Grace, Jane Velez-Mitchell and A.J. Hammer. CNN anchors Larry King, Anderson Cooper, T.J. Holmes, and Ali Velshi. CNN correspondents Alina Cho, Jason Carroll, Suzanne Malveaux (up from D.C. for U.N. week), and Jeanne Moos.

From NBC Hoda Kotb and Dawn Fratangelo; soon to be Fox Business host John Stossel, Judge Jeanine Pirro, Joan Rivers the Rev. Al Sharpton, Vera Wang, Lorraine Bracco and Alan Alda.

Behar’s “The View” co-hosts Sherri Shepherd and Whoopi Goldberg were on hand. From CNN and CBS News Erica Hill, and her Saturday “Early Show” co-anchor Chris Wragge and his WCBS co-anchor, and former MSNBC anchor, Kristine Johnson

CNN executives Jim Walton, Ken Jautz, Susan Grant and Jon Klein.

We’d just arrived when guest Suze Orman began telling us her concern that there’s something fishy about losing her once-commanding lead our GMA co-anchor off. “It’s physically impossible to gain that much,” said Orman of the lead now held by Ashleigh Banfield.

• More pictures after the jump and Monday on TVNewser, an interview with Behar and Jautz…

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