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Posts Tagged ‘Heidi Collins’

Soledad O’Brien Back to CNN Mornings?

TVNewser has learned the current iteration of CNN’s “American Morning” may be in its final months of production and will likely be replaced by two new shows, one airing from 5am-7amET and another from 7am-9amET.

We’re hearing Ashleigh Banfield, who has been working freelance for ABC News for nearly two years, may be tapped to anchor the earlier hours, while former “American Morning” co-anchor Soledad O’Brien, is being mentioned as anchor of the second two hours.

Banfield, the former MSNBC and Court TV anchor, is under contract to ABC News until the end of the year. O’Brien has been spending the last several years working on documentaries for the “In America” unit. No comment from CNN.

“American Morning,” which airs from 6-9amET, has had a rotating cast of temporary anchors since the departures of John Roberts late last year and Kiran Chetry in July.

“American Morning” — once a solid #2 behind “Fox & Friends” — has fallen behind in the ratings. In August, “American Morning” finished behind MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” for the fifth straight month, with the politics-heavy MSNBC show up +21% year-over-year.

As has happened in the past when shows are canceled, the staff of AM will have to re-apply for jobs after Executive Producers of the new shows are named.

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Former CNN Anchor Heidi Collins joins Fox in Minneapolis

Heidi Collins, who left CNN earlier this year after 7 years as a daytime anchor, has landed at KMSP the FOX O&O in Minneapolis/St. Paul.

Collins will hit the air in mid-October as co-anchor of the 5pm and 9pm newscasts, reports TVNewsCheck.

“I’m thrilled to be joining FOX 9,” Collins said. “I can’t believe I’m getting the chance to go back home to Minnesota and continue doing what I love. I look forward to this next chapter in my career.”

Collins joined CNN in July, 2002 where she anchored the late morning hours of CNN Newsroom. Before CNN, Collins was an anchor at KUSA in Denver.

CNN Adds Ali Velshi to Dayside Anchor Lineup

velshi_1-7.jpgBreaking: TVNewser has learned that CNN will be moving its chief business correspondent, Ali Velshi, to the 1-3pmET “CNN Newsroom” time slot. A formal announcement from the network is expected shortly.

In a note to staff, CNN/U.S. President Jon Klein said that Velshi will remain chief business correspondent and continue to co-anchor “Your $$$$$.”

Velshi has been reporting out of the New York bureau, but the new gig will broadcast from CNN’s Atlanta HQ. Velshi, who’s best known for his business reporting and field reports, has become increasingly visible on the network over the past year, providing coverage of the financial crisis. He’s also filled in for Campbell Brown and Rick Sanchez. Most recently, he anchored the network’s coverage of the Christmas day attempted terrorist attack.

Klein wrote, “Ali brings the expertise and passion that viewers expect from CNN, as he recently demonstrated when he so deftly handled the Christmas day breaking news about the attempted terror threat.”

The announcement goes hand in hand with news of anchor Heidi Collins departure from the network.

Velshi starts on January 18th, the same day that Sanchez launches his new program “Rick’s List.” Wolf Blitzer‘s “Situation Room” will move back an hour until John King‘s show launches.

Klein’s note after the jump.

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Heidi Collins Leaving CNN

Heidi Collins.jpgFirst on TVNewser: TVNewser has confirmed that dayside anchor Heidi Collins will not have her contract renewed by CNN, and that she will leave the network on Friday, January 15.

A CNN spokesperson tells TVNewser: “After seven years of dedicated service to CNN, Heidi Collins will be leaving the network on January 15. We thank Heidi for her contributions to the network and wish her the best.”

Collins joined CNN in July of 2002 as an anchor for then-Headline News. Previously she was an anchor/reporter for stations in Denver; Colorado Springs; and Wichita Falls, Texas.

No word yet on Collins’ future plans. She had been anchoring CNN’s dayside 9-11amET newscast. Ali Velshi will now anchor the 1-3pmET “CNN Newsroom” while Kyra Phillips will move to Collins’ spot.

This story was co-reported by TVNewser’s Alissa Krinsky.

Will the Real Martin Fletcher Please…

…add a photo to your Wikipedia page.

At 10:35amET on CNN, Heidi Collins interviewed London Times reporter, Martin Fletcher about the Lockerbie Bomber.

martin_fletcher_composite_8.jpg

Unfortunately, that photo is of NBC News Middle East correspondent Martin Fletcher, not London Times’ Martin Fletcher. Same goes for that bio info. Soon after, CNN switched the on-screen bio to the Fletcher in question, but the picture stayed. You always have to be soo fancy with your graphics, CNN.

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NBC News’ Martin Fletcher London Times’ Martin Fletcher?

Will Ratigan’s Show Be “News” or “Opinion”?

ratigan_5-7.jpgNew host of MSNBC’s 9-11amET program Dylan Ratigan made his first appearance as an MSNBC host last night on Countdown with Keith Olbermann.

“Welcome to the family, we are delighted,” said Olbermann at the end of the segment.

But what can viewers expect from the new member of the family? On the other cablers, Heidi Collins of CNN and Bill Hemmer and Megyn Kelly of FNC anchor news-focused programs, and currently MSNBC does as well. But Ratigan told the New York Times “that viewers would ‘be aware of my opinions’ but they would not necessarily hew to a single ideology.”

During his Countdown appearance viewers got a taste of those opinions. The segment focused on Bristol Palin‘s appearances on the network morning shows yesterday. “What’s lost on me is why the Republicans, who own the platform for wasteful spending in America, instead hearken back three, four, five years ago for some polarizing social issue that they think they can create some sort of momentum around, when it is clear to the folks in Kansas who want to be with the Republicans, that the Republicans, beyond perhaps gay marriage or an advocacy against teen pregnancy, which last I checked is a 90-10 issue, they have yet to step up to the obvious, which is, our systems in America are failing,” he said.

Click continued to see Ratigan’s Countdown appearance last night, in which he discusses the new program as well…

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Feeding the CNN Army, Guests, and EMS Too

RNC Logo.pngSo we’re on our way to interview Gretchen Carlson at the Fox Experience, but we stopped off at the incredibly neon decked-out CNN Grill. CNN analyst Roland Martin is doing his radio show from here, and we’ve spotted CNN correspondents John King, Candy Crowley, Gloria Borger, Ed Henry, Joe Johns and Jessica Yellin.

And we hear Anderson Cooper will join the team in St. Paul as early as today. Insiders tell us he, like other network anchors, is leaving the Gulf Coast and headed here.

Arianna Huffington is here with a crew in tow. Several members of the St. Paul Fire Dept/EMS are here, in what is normally, and will be again when CNN leaves, the Eagle Street Diner.

The Grill can also accommodate live shots. In fact, minutes ago Louisiana delegate Michael Bayham wrapped up an interview with Heidi Collins (and if you looked closely TVNewser was blogging from behind the shot).

We’ll be back later today to get the scoop on what it takes to transform a downtown diner into a restaurant/live location/hangout.

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John King and Candy Crowley at the CNN Grill.

Putin Tells CNN Reporter Georgia Invasion Orchestrated by U.S.

CNNPutin_8.28.jpgCNN’s Matthew Chance spoke with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, in the Black Sea city of Sochi, today. In the interview, Putin said his country was not to blame for starting the conflict with Georgia. In fact, Putin accused the United States of orchestrating the conflict.

Chance did a quick live interview with CNN anchor Heidi Collins earlier today. His interview with Putin will air at 3pET on CNNI.

Changes to CNN Newsroom

sanchez_8-7.JPGThe Monday after the GOP convention (September 8) will bring a new daytime line-up for CNN Newsroom.

TVNewser has obtained an email from Scott Matthews to the CNN Newsroom Staff. Matthews was named director of programming in January.

Heidi Collins continues from 9-11amET, followed by Tony Harris 11am-1pmET. Kyra Phillips anchors from 1-3pmET and Rick Sanchez moves into the 3-4pmET role.

Don Lemon essentially swaps roles with Sanchez, and moves to anchor the weekend edition of CNN Newsroom.

Click continued to see the email…

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