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Posts Tagged ‘Jane Velez Mitchell’

Fans Start Petition to Bring Back Jane Velez-Mitchell

VelezAriasFans have created an on-line petition in an attempt to save Jane Velez-Mitchell’s job at HLN. Velez-Mitchell’s nightly show was canceled Tuesday, with “Forensic Files” airing in its place.

The petition, which has a goal of 1,000 signatures, is addressed to HLN head Albie Hecht. “We do not want to watch old reruns of Forensic Files,” the petition reads. While it is unlikely 1,000 signatures would get Hecht to change his mind, it is evident that Velez-Mitchell has a loyal following. The petitioner goes on to say, “Jane was a tireless and outspoken advocate on behalf of animals, and crime victims. I’ve been watching her since the Casey Anthony case and she is the only one that has updates on major investigations and big high-profile trials!”

HLN canceled Velez-Mitchell’s show, along with CNN’s “Sanjay Gupta, MD,” “CNN Money,” “Unguarded,” and “Crossfire” in what is shaping up to be a busy week of layoffs. CNN is reportedly offering on-site counseling services to those affected by the cuts.

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CNN’s ‘Unguarded’ Canceled

nicholsAs part of the cuts at CNN, “Unguarded” has been canceled, TVNewser has learned.

Host Rachel Nichols (right) will continue on with CNN as sole sports anchor for the network and host the occasional special as well as continuing her role with Turner Sports. It’s not known how many staffers have been cut as a result of the cancellation. The half-hour Friday night sports show never caught on with CNN viewers since its debut in October, 2013.

CNN is trimming its staff by about 8% or roughly 300 positions. Following voluntary buyouts, a round of layoffs began yesterday. HLN’s Jane Velez Mitchell and her staff were let go, as were about two dozen positions in the Washington Bureau.

Jane Velez Mitchell Show Canceled

JaneDon2Breaking: Jane Velez Mitchell‘s nightly HLN show has been canceled, part of deep cuts at CNN today. Velez Mitchell will be leaving the network, as will the staff of the show. In all about 15 HLN employees, we’ve learned.

Velez Mitchell was a contributor to the network even before she got her own show which launched 6 years ago this week. Velez Mitchell was thrust onto the HLN schedule Oct. 17, 2008, when Glenn Beck abruptly departed for Fox News Channel.

As it turns out, Velez Mitchell’s final episode last night finished as the No. 1 HLN primetime show in the demo, even beating Chris Matthews on MSNBC. “Forensic Files” will air at 7pmET tonight.

Layoffs at CNN Begin

CNNLogo_11.24Layoffs have begun at CNN.

As many as 300, or 8%, of CNN’s workforce is being cut in Atlanta, Washington, D.C., New York and Los Angeles. About 130 staffers have taken a voluntary buyout, other open positions are not being filled. The remainder, about 170 positions, are the result of layoffs which are happening today and tomorrow.

One of the most high profile departures is Darius Walker, VP and Northeast Bureau Chief based in New York. Walker has been with CNN since 1996, beginning as a senior editor on the international desk in Atlanta. He’s also had stints in the Washington bureau and at CNNfn.

We hear up to 28 jobs are being cut in Washington, D.C., many are news-gathering positions.

The CNN entertainment unit is also being disbanded and staffers in New York, Atlanta and Los Angeles are departing. (Correspondent Nischelle Turner left the network last week for “Entertainment Tonight.”)

Mashable reports Christiane Amanpour‘s New York-based staff has also been cut.

“The changes this week are difficult yet necessary,” a CNN spokesperson tells TVNewser. “Out of respect for our colleagues directly impacted, we won’t be commenting on specific people or programs.”

CNN is just one of the Turner networks facing cuts that are part of CEO John Martin’s goal to create what he describes as a more “streamlined, nimble and efficient company.”

Developing…

More: Jane Velez Mitchell‘s HLN show has been canceled. All staff will be departing.

As Time Warner Ends Vice Talks, A&E Plans $250M Stake in Media Company

viceThe New York TimesJonathan Mahler scoops that Time Warner has ended negotiations with Vice Media. The talks, which have been going on for months, included a plan to spin off Time Warner’s HLN network, and refashion it into a Vice channel. The Brooklyn-based media company includes a magazine, book publishing, a massive online presence, and gritty, global documentaries which are carried on Time Warner’s HBO.

The conversations collapsed after the two companies were unable to agree on a valuation of Vice. Last year, 21st Century Fox paid $70 million for a 5 percent stake in the company, valuing the company at more than $1 billion.

In June, Vice co-founder and CEO Shane Smith told the New York Times having a TV network was “the next step in our evolution. Our mobile and online stuff is going to grow exponentially, but we want a three-legged stool, and the third leg is TV.”

A week ago, the Wall Street Journal reported Time Warner had also been in talks with Glenn Beck‘s company about re-branding HLN into TheBlaze TV. But those talks also came to nothing. Earlier this year, under the new leadership of Albie Hecht, HLN intended to become “the home for the social media generation.” Primetime programs include those hosted by Nancy GraceJane Velez-Mitchell, and Dr. Drew Pinsky. Late nights and weekends are made up of true crime stories.

> More: The Financial Times reports Vice is finalizing a deal to sell a 10% stake to A&E Networks for $250 million. A&E is jointly owned by Walt Disney and Hearst. The sale could be announced as early as next week, FT reports.

HLN Doubling Down on Social Media

If CNN is asking viewers to “go there” with them, its sister network HLN is going directly to social media to reinvent itself.

HLN unveiled upcoming changes to its lineup at its upfront presentation Thursday in New York City, and it all revolves around social media. “The Daily Share” will premiere later this year; a one-hour news program produced in Atlanta that shows what people are watching, searching, playing, sharing, shopping, and creating on social media.

A series of currently in-development reality shows will also debut, including “2 Spouses, 3 Houses,” where YouTube star Jessica Edwards looks at couples’ social media habits to find their dream home; “What’s Trending,” hosted by co-founder of @whatstrending Shira Lazar, and more.

The network also formally announced a creative partnership with Twitter. For more, head to Lost Remote.

“I think it’s going to be evolutionary,” network EVP and GM Albie Hecht told TVNewser about HLN’s shift to becoming the social media network. Hecht will talk about HLN’s evolution and more as a panelist at the TVNewser Show on April 29 in NYC.

“It’s going to work for a news channel,” “Morning Express” host Robin Meade told us, saying the news business is shifting to more of a two-way conversation with the audience. “It’s almost like a Nielsen immediate,” she added about the instant feedback social media gives anchors about viewer interest in particular stories.

“Television is changing, and people don’t just sit there passively…they want to participate,” Jane Velez-Mitchell told us, also joking that her trademark on-air battles with guests will evolve. “I’m happy to have some Twitter battles…I’ll take the battle wherever I have to go.”

Amy Robach Inspires at NLGJA Gala, Plus a TV News Selfie

NLGJASelfie2

ABC’s Amy Robach lit up the room last night as host NLGJA’s Healdines & Headliners event. Robach, who has three more chemotherapy treatments in her fight against breast cancer told the crowd that we all have battles to face, but it’s how you fight that will determine the win.

“Until it hits you here,” she said to the crowd, pointing to her heart, “you don’t really know what it’s like to be in battle. And once you get in there and get your hands a little bloodied and you see your comrades next to you, you become so powerful.” Robach told us the support she’s gotten since her diagnosis in November has been nothing short of overwhelming.

Robach, accompanied by her husband Andrew Shue, was among 300 attendees, including dozens of TV news anchors, reporters and producers who turned out for at the annual event. “They gave me the night off,” said CNN’s Richard Quest who has been front and center for the network’s Malaysia Airlines coverage.

MeredithVieiraAmyRobachWe chatted with Shepard Smith who was trading Miami stories with his former local news colleague, now Weather Channel meteorologist Bryan Norcross. And there was a cross-network, lead-in pairing as CNN’s Noon anchor Ashleigh Banfield was accompanied by MSNBC’s 1pm anchor Ronan Farrow. Farrow told us he’s getting more comfortable each day hosting his “Ronan Farrow Daily.” The cable news newbie says he’s getting good advice from TV veterans.

Tamron Hall told us she’s still adjusting to her new schedule. The new 9am “Today” show co-host is now doing double morning duty with her MSNBC show at 11am, giving her about 45 minutes to prepare for the second show. “I have very good producers who make sure it comes together,” Hall said.

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HLN Intends to Become ‘Home for Social Media Generation’

hln logo_304x200HLN’s rebrand as the “new TV home for the social media generation” has begun, network President Albie Hecht announced today.

As our sister-site Lost Remote reports, the network’s social conversion will roll out throughout the year and will feature an all-in social storytelling strategy, curating news from across social platforms while highlighting the most trending and viral stories and the social users behind them.

“While others report on the conversation, HLN will be a part of it,” said @AlbieHechtHLN. “Just as MTV was adopted by a disconnected target audience that was underserved by television, HLN will be the first TV home to embrace the social media generation and champion its interests.”

“RightThisMinute” will be the first new show rolled out, premiering tonight at 10pmET. It will report on the most viral web videos and the back stories behind them before they go viral.

“Morning Express with Robin Meade,” “News Now,” Jane Velez-Mitchell, Nancy Grace, and “Dr. Drew On Call” will also be getting a social makeover.

The full press release after the jump. Read more

2013 Ratings: HLN Only Cable News Network to Grow From Last Year

Although HLN finished 2013 last among the cable news networks, the channel — fueled by the trials of Jodi Arias and George Zimmerman — was the only network to grow its audience compared to the previous year.

The ratings for 2013 (Nielsen Live + Same Day data):

  • Primetime (Mon-Sun): 395,000 Total Viewers / 139,000 A25-54
  • Total Day (Mon-Sun): 296,000 Total Viewers / 112,000 A25-54

In total day, HLN was up +22% in total viewers and +18% in A25-54 viewers compared to 2012. In primetime, the network is up +18% and +24%, respectively.

HLN’s highest-rated program for the year was “Nancy Grace.” Grace’s program averaged 493,000 total viewers and 168,000 A25-54 viewers, up +18% and +25%, respectively, compared to 2012. Jane Velez-Mitchell‘s program was also up significantly — +49% in total viewers and +56% in the demo — compared to last year.

Illinois Man Cleans Up at Star-Studded CNN Heroes

BanfieldLemonRomansA man who has dedicated his life to cleaning up the Mississippi River is the CNN Hero of the Year. Chad Pregracke of East Moline, Illinois received the honor last night at the event which was recorded for a CNN special to air Sunday, Dec. 1.

TVNewser was on the red carpet, which was swarming with both CNN and entertainment stars.

Piers Morgan told us how refreshing it is to cover everyday heroes vs. A-list celebrities: “They’re real people, and real people are always much more heroic than celebrities in my experience.  They’re not surrounded by entourages, money, or glamor…they have to rely on their own big hearts and selflessness.”

Ashleigh Banfield said “Heroes” proves good news works on TV. “We’ve heard forever good news doesn’t sell… it clearly sells. This has done well for years, people love it…and it feels great.”

HLN’s Jane Velez-Mitchell told us the inspiration Heroes provides is like therapy for her: “We do see the worst in humanity so often…this is more of a reflection of what humanity really is. This restores my faith in humanity.”

We caught up with CNN anchor Don Lemon and asked him what to expect from his new limited run show at 11pm: “It’s going to be amazing. You’re going to want to watch it,” he said, adding “to have any time slot on CNN is a pretty big accomplishment.”

Rachel Nichols talked about the positive response she’s received on the return of sports to CNN via her show “Unguarded.”

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