Arenas comes to CBS from Houston, where he has been the weekend anchor at CBS affiliate KHOU since 2003. He will begin at CBS on March 17.
Posts Tagged ‘David Rhodes’
CBS has launched a new division called CBS Live Experiences which aims to bring CBS’s popular TV programming to live events. The first, happening in February, will mark the 50th anniversary of The Beatles performing on “The Ed Sullivan Show”
The centerpiece of each event will be CBS News’ archival coverage of key moments, in addition to a symposium of experts moderated by CBS News anchors and correspondents.
CBS News correspondent and anchor Anthony Mason will host the first event Sunday, Feb. 9 at the Ed Sullivan Theater in New York. That’s 50 years to the day of the historic telecast and in the legendary theater where it happened.
“I was a huge fan of The Beatles,” Mason tells TVNewser. “I watched The Ed Sullivan Show that first February night in 1964. I was only 8 years old, but had a collection of Beatle fan magazines and even bought a Beatles wig.
I distinctly remember my good buddy from school, (WABC-TV entertainment reporter) Sandy Kenyon, and I throwing on our wigs, grabbing tennis rackets like they were guitars and miming to the ‘Meet The Beatles’ album on my parents’ turntable. It will be a real thrill to be in the Ed Sullivan Theater on the 50th anniversary.”
A day after ABC News launched its new cable channel, CBS News is reportedly looking toward the possibility of a 24-hour service devoted to news and information programming. BuzzFeed’s Peter Lauria reports that CBS News president David Rhodes has made this a “pet project.”
The news and interactive divisions of CBS have been quietly developing a digital video service that continually streams content 24-hours a day and leverages reporting from its existing news staff and content from the broadcaster’s archives onto new distribution platforms, according to two sources close to the situation.
Rhodes, a veteran of Fox News and Bloomberg, knows a thing or two about programming a newschannel. Lauria reports Rhodes is working alongside CBS Interactive chief Jim Lanzone “who is spearheading talks with distributors and whose Interactive unit runs the digital operations for CBS News from a sales, marketing, and technological perspective.”
The news comes less than a day after ABC News and Univision launched their news and information joint venture called Fusion, which is geared toward millennials and Hispanics. As Lauria points out, CBS’s audience is decidedly older:
At first blush, the idea of CBS News creating a 24-hour digital video service seems quixotic since it features one of the oldest audiences in TV, with an average viewer age in the mid-50s. But as digital adoption increases, more and more older viewers are getting onto connected devices, mobile or otherwise.
“If we wanted a more stark demonstration of the differences in these shows, I think this morning is a perfect example,” Rhodes tells TVNewser. “We have done more Syria on this morning show than anyone,” says Rhodes. “And we’ve been rewarded for it by viewers.”
That “CBS This Morning” co-anchor Charlie Rose got the interview should not come as a surprise. He’d interviewed Assad before, and has been working for months to secure this interview as the Syrian civil war intensified. “He’s had a track record on this story for a long time,” says Rhodes. The entirety of the interview will air tonight on Rose’s PBS program.
Rhodes’ boss, CBS News chairman and “60 Minutes” executive producer Jeff Fager put on another hat this weekend: as Rose’s producer. “When you have a situation like this, you don’t know what you’re going to find when you get there,” says Rhodes. “There’s no substitute to having people there with the experience and confidence to confront that. That Jeff was able to go, is great”
Rose and Fager spent Saturday night in Damascus, before heading to the presidential palace Sunday morning. Hours later Rose was in Lebanon phoning into CBS’s Bob Schieffer breaking the news of his interview. That’s also around the time the White House first learned about it.
Which means it came as news to Rhodes’ younger brother, Ben Rhodes, who is the White House Deputy National Security Adviser for Strategic Communication.
CBS has made a big promotion, upping CBS Sports Network chief David Berson to president of CBS Sports.
Berson will continue to report to CBS Sports chairman Sean McManus, and will add day-to-day responsibility of the division to his plate. He will continue to run CBS Sports Network. His promotion positions him as a strong number two to McManus, and echoes the management structure of CBS News, which has Jeff Fager as chairman and David Rhodes as president.
Berson joined CBS in 2011 to take over what was then CBS College Sports Network. It rebranded to CBS Sports Network shortly thereafter. He was a 16-year veteran of ESPN before joining CBS.
“David’s contributions and expertise in all areas of our business, including programming, production and business affairs, have managed to exceed our high expectations since he joined CBS Sports,” said McManus in a statement. “This is a natural evolution for David to assume additional responsibilities at CBS Sports, working alongside me on the day-to-day management of both CBS Sports and CBS Sports Network.”
Politico’s Dylan Byers digs deeper into the story of CBS News correspondent Sharyl Attkisson. Byers reports that Attkisson, who openly discussed the challenge of getting her stories on the air, is in talks to leave the network, but that CBS would like her to stay.
CBS News president David Rhodes is said to value her diligence, but there are others, most notably Pat Shevlin, the executive producer of CBS Evening News, who are wary of her motives and have even dismissed her, in private, as a partisan carrying water for Republicans. Alternatively, some sources suggested that Shevlin’s own political bias, which they described as liberal, was to blame.
“She is a dogged reporter, a good reporter, but some people here get the feeling she goes too far — that she’s agenda driven,” a source told Byers. “She’s not afraid, and that’s a great thing. But sometimes people here believe she has to be reined in.”
CBS is delivering its upfront presentation to advertisers, media buyers and the press this afternoon, and CEO Les Moonves took aim squarely at NBC and “Today” in his opening statement.
“We believe that great drama belongs in primetime between 8-11 PM, not at 7 in the morning,” Moonves quipped, as a photo of Ann Curry and Matt Lauer from Curry’s departure from “Today” appeared on stage behind him (see the photo to the left).
Of course, “CBS This Morning” also had a talent change in the last year, as Erica Hill left (eventually joining NBC) and Norah O’Donnell came on board. That said, the transition was free of drama in front of the cameras.
CBS News was given prime placement at the upfront, with Moonves introducing the division. The CBS CEO said that “under the leadership of Jeff Fager and David Rhodes there is a renaissance going on,” before introducing a clip reel with news from the last year. Scott Pelley and O’Donnell then appeared on stage to talk about CBS News.
CBS News correspondent Sharyl Attkisson has been one of the more aggressive reporters covering the aftermath of the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi last September. But the veteran CBS News reporter feels the story’s she’s pitched lately are getting picked up on the TV network. Attkisson tells CBN‘s David Brody, “I’ve received a lot of encouragement from the top executives… Jeff Fager, who is our CEO and David Rhodes who is our president who have certainly never said anything to try and interfere with the coverage. They’ve complimented a lot of my work and strongly supported it. On the other hand … there hasn’t been an appetite for the stories that I’ve offered on Benghazi so I’ve published a lot online because there’s unlimited content space and I’ve done a lot of my reporting there.”
Benghazi, the AP phone taps and the IRS scandal. It’s been quite a few days for the Obama administration and the journalists who cover it.
- On Benghazi: while the president believes “there’s no there, there,” CNN’s Jake Tapper got his hands on an email yesterday from then-Deputy National Security Adviser for Strategic Communications Ben Rhodes (brother of CBS News president David Rhodes) written three days after the attack. It was a version of an email that Tapper’s former ABC News colleague Jonathan Karl reported on last Friday.
- The Associated Press is not satisfied with Attorney General Eric Holder‘s statement on the breadth of phone tapping the news agency’s reporters were subjected to. Neither, for one, is the New York Times editorial board as well as dozens of other publishers, broadcasters and trade groups.
- But the biggest scandal appears to be the IRS’s selective targeting of conservative organizations. It was the lead on the evening newscasts last night and two of the three morning shows today (“Good Morning America” and “CBS This Morning”) and continues to be a hot topic on the cable news networks.
In a Behind the Curtain column, Politico’s Mike Allen and Jim VandHei write, “(T)he press, after years of being accused of being soft on Obama while being berated by West Wing aides on matters big and small, now has every incentive to be as ruthless as can be.”
NBC News is casting a wide net in the search for its new president. A few weeks ago, TVNewser heard that NBC was eyeing some potential candidates from England, and now we have some names, courtesy of the LA Times‘ Joe Flint.
One of the leading candidates, according to Flint, is ITV’s chief news executive Deborah Turness. Turness, 46, took over ITV’s news division in 2004, keeping it competitive with the revered and well-funded BBC.
NBC also has a relationship with ITV, sharing content and correspondents in places like Central Africa.
Flint also floats a few other names, including CBS News president David Rhodes (not available), former ABC News executive Jon Banner (not interested), as well as Sky News exec Sarah Whitehead and Channel 4′s Jay Hunt.