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Posts Tagged ‘Christie Hefner’

‘Morning Joe’ in Chicago: Oprah interview one of the show’s all-time ‘highlights’

“We’ve had a lot of good guests” in the years since MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” debuted in 2007, says EP Chris Licht.  “But this is one of the highlights of the show.”

“This” refers to Oprah Winfrey‘s live appearance Friday, when Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski, Willie Geist, and the gang descended on the Windy City for a live broadcast.  Booking the Queen of all media was two years in the making, dating back to Licht approaching her at a New York gala.

“And I literally went up to her,” he told TVNewser in Chicago, “and I knew she watched the show, and I said, ‘You’ve got to do the show.’  And she said, ‘I promise you, I will do the show.’”

Oprah was true to her word.  And she was joined on the program by a veritable Windy City who’s who at the RL Restaurant, including David Axelrod, Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin, former Playboy chairman and CEO Christie Hefner, Rev. Jesse Jackson, CNBC’s Rick Santelli. Crammed into the main dining room was a makeshift ’set’, plus tables and chairs where VIP guests watched the show.

We chatted with Joe and Mika after the show. Our video includes a special cameo from NBC News president Steve Capus on the subject of the recent Comcast takeover of NBC.

Breakfast was served for attendees, some of whom arrived so early they were also in the house for “Way Too Early”, which Willie Geist anchored live from RL starting at 4:30amCT.  For Geist, the Chicago trip was a homecoming: he was born in suburban Evanston, and lived

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‘Morning Joe’ Rises in Chicago, Oprah Winfrey Interview on Tap


MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” will originate from Chicago this Friday as Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski interview Chicago’s most famous resident (for now): Oprah Winfrey. Joe, Mika and Willie Geist will host the show from RL (as in Ralph Lauren) Restaurant along Chicago’s Magnificent Mile.

Other guests include Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), former White House adviser and now returning Chicago resident, David Axelrod, the Rev. Jesse Jackson, Vanity Fair special correspondent Maureen Orth, and her son, NBC News correspondent Luke Russert.

More in the press release after the jump…

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Ex-Playboy CEO Flirts with TV News

CHeffner_3.15.jpgMorning shows are a nice place to visit, but ex-Playboy CEO Christie Hefner wouldn’t want to live there.

Hefner, who popped up Friday on “Good Morning America” as a panelist on George Stephanopoulos‘ “Morning Mix,” says friends have encouraged her over the years to pursue a morning anchor gig.

“They said I’d be pretty good at it, and there aren’t enough really thoughtful interview shows on TV,” explains Hefner, 57, a life-long Chicagoan. “Morning shows are the logical forum for me. They talk about all kinds of issues.”

Not to worry, Meredith, Robin, Maggie, Mika and Kiran.

Though Hefner does guest shots every month or so when she’s in New York on business, she’s not chasing any full-time employment these days. She’s much too busy.

Since leaving Playboy Enterprises in January ’09 after 20 years’ running the empire created by her dad, Hugh Hefner, Hefner fille has been juggling three projects.

She’s on the board of John Podesta‘s progressive think tank, Center for American Progress. She’s working with Canyon Ranch Wellness Resorts to expand their brand. Ditto for Columbia Journalism Review, which offered Hefner the publisher’s post. She declined.

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