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Posts Tagged ‘Bill Weir’

CNN’s Bill Weir: Reporting Around the World, In Part, For His Daughter

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CNN’s Bill Weir has had a lot of time to think. He’s been on flights around the world, and recently spent a night with the crew shooting his new series, “The Wonder List”, on a remote and tiny South Pacific island–no power, just firelight. Weir says the series, which aims to document people and places threatened by a changing world. In those quiet moments, Weir says he was often thinking of his daughter, and the world she will inherit.

“I’m a nostalgic sap on a good day, but the day my 10-year-old entered a room in eye shadow, the world careened off its axis. When I flash forward to her adulthood and flash back to my childhood, the change seems massive,” Weir told TVNewser. “There were maybe three-and-a-half billion people on the planet when I was born. When she’s my age, there will be close to ten billion. Shifting landscapes and values and cultures are inevitable but I’d like to be able to look her in the eye one day and say, I did my best to let them know what they had, when they had it.”
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Where’s CNN’s Bill Weir Been? Turns Out, Just About Everywhere

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When Bill Weir left ABC News for CNN more than a year ago, the speculation immediately involved what Weir’s show would look like, and where in the CNN lineup it would land. One report hinted Weir might grab the 9 p.m. hour from Piers Morgan. Another story suggested it wasn’t 9 p.m., but possibly 11 p.m.

Last April, it seemed we had our answer when CNN launched a new newscast, “CNN Tonight”, with Weir in the debut anchor role. But insiders at the time insisted Weir was not interested in making the show his own–or, as he said in an interview with WGN last week, of being a full-time “prompter monkey.”

Instead, Weir took off, flying around the world, hitting six continents in four months. The results of his work will be a CNN series, “The Wonder List with Bill Weir”, which CNN announced today would air in 2015.
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CNN to Announce New Bill Weir Show Monday

In the last four months Bill Weir has traveled to six continents. “It’s the longest I’ve gone without having to put on a tie and be a prompter monkey,” Weir told his former colleagues at WGN in Chicago this morning. Weir said CNN will be revealing details about the new show Monday. The CNNCommentary blog writes the show will be called the “Last Chance Diaries.” “It’s the most exciting project I’ve ever had,” Weir says. WATCH:

Weir has been a journeyman TV journalist. After Chicago, he worked for KABC in Los Angeles, then to ABC News in New York where he anchored “Good Morning America” Weekend and, later, “Nightline.” He joined CNN a year ago, and did some fill in anchoring before beginning work on the new CNN Originals show. Weir was on WGN to celebrate the show’s 20th anniversary. Before Chicago, he was a sports anchor in Green Bay. In a Media Beat interview a few years ago, he told us about his transition from “smart ass” sports guy to ABC News anchor.

Mike Rowe: ‘Somebody’s Gotta Do It,’ Isn’t Another ‘Dirty Jobs’

MikeRoweIceSculptureCNN toasted their newest host Mike Rowe at Hudson Mercantile on the far West Side of Manhattan tonight.

Next Wednesday Rowe takes his bow on the network with his new show “Somebody’s Gotta Do It.” Rowe says it’s not a continuation of his old Discovery Channel show “Dirty Jobs,” but rather an extension of a segment he did on “Evening Magazine” back in the early 2000s on San Francisco station KPIX.

“‘Dirty Jobs’ focused through the lens of dirt. This show will focus through the lens of people,” Rowe says. While the show is more than a decade in the making, getting it on CNN has taken considerably less time.

On his first day in January 2013, new CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker spotted Rowe dining at the Landmarc in Time Warner Center. “I sat down and I said to him, ‘We want you on CNN.’ And here we are 18 months later. It took a little while, but here we are.”

Rowe says he told Zucker all he needed was “some jet fuel and an hour a week. One hour. One single hour where there’s absolutely, positively not going to be any bad news… Unless of course something breaks, and then I get it,” Rowe jokes, recognizing CNN’s primary mission.

Rowe says CNN is a great fit for his brand of reality TV, which he says has devolved over time. “CNN has always been a non-fiction network, with an eye on news,” he says. “But what’s going on in the rest of the industry, I’m not sure. I joked with Jeff, ’The duck’s have a dynasty, the amish have a mafia and honey’s got a boo boo.”

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The Scoreboard: Thursday, April 24

25-54 demographic (Live +SD)

  • Total day: FNC: 212 | MSNBC: 104 | CNN: 97 | HLN: 80
  • Primetime: FNC: 340 | MSNBC: 192 | CNN: 150 | HLN: 93

4p: 5p: 6p: 7p: 8p: 9p: 10p: 11p: 12a:
FNC
Cavuto:

195

TheFive:

290

Baier:

222

Greta:

240

O’Reilly:

395

Megyn:

373

Hannity:

244

O’Reilly:

233

Megyn:

224

MSNBC
Wagner:

103

EdShow:

139

Sharpton:

125

Matthews:

152

Hayes:

135

Maddow:

239

O’Donnell:

202

Hayes:

101

Maddow:

100

CNN
Tapper:

68

Blitzer:

123

Blitzer:

134

Burnett:

168

Cooper:

186

Tonight:

131

Chicago:

132

SpcRpt:

116

Cooper:

102

HLN
News:

30

Files:

20

Files:

32

Jane:

60

Grace:

98

DrDrew:

94

Files:

87

Files:

162

Files:

207

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Cliven Bundy: ‘I Think Fox and I are Right On’

Cliven Bundy, the Nevada rancher who’s been in a dispute withe the Bureau of Land Management for 20 years, only to escalate recently, was back on cable news last night. Bundy who has gotten support for his stand from some corners of Fox News, was on CNN where anchor Bill Weir asked him how it feels to be “abandoned by Fox.”

“I think they misunderstood me a little bit,” Bundy says, “But I think Fox and I, Hannity and I are just right on. I think he does understand me.” Sean Hannity was among the Fox News hosts to disavow Bundy’s comments yesterday to the New York Times. Among other things, Bundy wondered whether African Americans would be better off as slaves. Hannity called his comments “beyond repugnant.”

Juju Chang Named Anchor of ‘Nightline’

abc_juju_chang_090116_mainAs Cynthia McFadden packs for NBC, ABC is wasting no time in announcing her replacement at “Nightline.” ABC lifer Juju Chang has been named co-anchor of the ABC News broadcast effective immediately.

“Juju is the perfect example of someone whose dedication and tenacity to innovative reporting have paved the way for her success,” ABC/Disney co-president Ben Sherwood writes in a note to staff.

Chang, who has been with ABC News her entire career, starting as a desk assistant, is married to former NBC News boss Neal Shapiro, now president of WNET.

McFadden was one of the original anchors when “Nightline” went to a 3-anchor format in 2005, along with Martin Bashir and Terry Moran. Bashir left for MSNBC in 2010, replaced by Bill Weir. Last year, Dan Abrams replaced Moran who is now a foreign correspondent for ABC News. And when Weir left for CNN in October, Dan Harris took his spot.

In his note, Sherwood thanked McFadden for her 20 years of service. “Cynthia has been an amazing colleague, a loyal mentor to so many of our up and coming producers and I am personally grateful for her profound contributions to ABC News. It is with great fondness that I wish Cynthia the very best in her new adventure.”

Sherwood’s note after the jump…

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Here’s the Reason Behind CNN’s ‘Poaching’ From ABC

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The New York Post reports on a Disney shareholder who asked Disney CEO Bob Iger whether his ABC News division is becoming a “training ground” for talent who eventually flee to CNN. Jake Tapper, Chris Cuomo, Bill Weir, and John Berman have all left ABC for CNN in the last 18 months. Rachel Nichols also left Disney-owned ESPN for CNN.

One key reason for the departures, which was not mentioned in the NYPost story, is that former ABC News VP of talent and strategy Amy Entelis is now head of talent and content development at CNN. Others who’ve made the move to CNN include SVP Vinnie Malhotra who spent 15 years at ABC and ESPN, and Andrew Morse who also spent 15 years at ABC and is now CNN’s SVP of domestic newsgathering.

Iger is unfazed by the departures, telling shareholders ABC has “a deep bench,” adding “in some cases we were trying to make way for a new generation, a new crop of talent.” The Post reports Iger singled out ABC News reporter David Muir, who is rumored to be a contender to replace Diane Sawyer on “World News.”

On FNC, NYT Reporter Holds Breaking News on Malaysia Airlines Until It Hits NYTimes.com

Kelly SchmidtAll three cable news networks reported last night’s New York Times breaking news that missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370′s first turn that diverted the plane’s path was done by a computer system potentially programmed in the plane’s cockpit.

Megyn Kelly had the co-writer of the Times story, Michael Schmidt, on as a guest at the top of her show at 9:01pmET.

But Schmidt sat on his reporting for 23 minutes, until after the piece went live on the NYTimes.com.  “Way to hold it, right until the C block, Michael,” Kelly said sarcastically to Schmidt before he reported the news of the plane deliberately being diverted at  9:24pmET mark of the “Kelly File” (the funny exchange is after the jump).

Filling in on “Piers Morgan Live,” Bill Weir reported the Times story at 9:26pmET, talking to CNN safety analyst David Soucie and CNN aviation analyst Jim Tilmon.

MSNBC first mentioned the NY Times story at the top of “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell” at 10:02pmET, as guest host Ari Melber turned to a report from NBC’s Tom Costello followed by a segment with former NTSB investigator Greg Feith and former corporate pilot Anthony Roman.

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Your Pick for Piers Morgan’s Replacement is…

Larry KingAfter Larry King fueled speculation about a possible return to CNN following the news of Piers Morgan‘s show cancellation, we asked you who you’d like to see slide into the 9pmET CNN chair.

With close to 12,000 overall poll votes, the legendary interviewer in suspenders ran away with the win, with 86% of you voting for King to retake the 9pm hour he hosted for 25 years. Coming in a distant second was recently departed “Tonight Show” host Jay Leno with 8%.

Rounding out the top five were Katie Couric (3%), and a tie between CNN’s Bill Weir and “other” at 2%. Some of your other selections included embattled teen star Justin Bieber, Jerry Seinfeld, and the highly camera-friendly Donald Duck. We’re keeping the poll open, so feel free to vote if you haven’t.

King told us last year it was CNN founder Ted Turner that gave him his big break.

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