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Posts Tagged ‘Jeff Fager’

Lara Logan Defends ’60 Minutes’ Benghazi Report; Admits CBS Tie Should Have Been Revealed

Logan_7.8CBS News correspondent Lara Logan is defending her reporting on the 9/11/12 attacks at the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi amid a firestorm of criticism over the conflicting stories of the main subject of the Oct. 27 “60 Minutes” report.

Logan interviewed Dylan Davies — who used the pseudonym Morgan Jones as the author of new book on the subject, and in his interview with CBS. What Davies writes in the book is not consistent with an incident report attributed to Davies. But Davies told the Daily Beast he didn’t write that report

“If you read the book, you would know he never had two stories. He only had one story,” Logan tells the NYTimesBill Carter. She says the criticism is political. “We worked on this for a year,” she tells Carter. “We killed ourselves not to allow politics into this report.”

One regret about the report: Logan and her boss CBS News chairman and “60 Minutes” EP Jeff Fager say they should have revealed that Davies’ book, “The Embassy House” was published by Threshold Editions, part of the Simon and Schuster unit of CBS Corp.

“Honestly, it never factored into the story. It was a mistake; we should have done it, precisely because there’s nothing to hide. It was an oversight.”

Steve Kroft Celebrates 25 Years At ’60 Minutes’

Back in 1989, a young reporter named Steve Kroft joined a young producer named Jeff Fager on “60 Minutes,” where they were nervous about impressing the show’s EP Don Hewitt.

In a “60 minutes Overtime” piece, Kroft and Fager (now chairman of CBS News and EP of “60 Minutes”) recall the correspondent’s first year on the job, and his two and a half decade career at the iconic CBS newsmagazine.

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‘Why can’t you put Marilyn Monroe in the same broadcast as an interview with the president’

PelleyKerryOn Tuesday “60 Minutes” celebrated its 45th birthday. The show debuted on CBS Tuesday, Sept. 24, 1968. Its success over the years brought on many imitators and even led Rupert Murdoch to once inquire about buying the show and bringing it to FOX.

This Sunday, the dean of the TV newsmagazines begins season number 46 on CBS. “60 Minutes” EP Jeff Fager who is also the chairman of CBS News, explains show creator Don Hewitt‘s vision for the show like this: “Why can’t you put Marilyn Monroe in the same broadcast as an interview with the president.” (Watch after the jump)

This Sunday, the mix of stories includes Scott Pelley‘s interview with Secretary of State John Kerry; Steve Kroft’s report on schizophrenia, the sometimes violent illness that the Washington Navy Yard shooter showed symptoms of; and Norah O’Donnell‘s profile of Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly, including details of his new book “Killing Jesus.”

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Checkpoints, Armed Guards, Bullet-Proof Vests for Charlie Rose on the Road to Damascus

Charlie Rose was back in the anchor chair of “CBS This Morning” today talking about how he landed that wide-ranging interview with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. As we reported yesterday, Rose and CBS News chairman Jeff Fager, Rose’s producer for the interview, traveled to the region late last week and secured the interview Sunday morning.

“I must say that Jeff and I found them, once we got there, they didn’t make any effort to change content, there was nothing off the record. There was no sense of, you can’t talk about this. None. I said, “This is going to be a very tough interview.” And they said “The president would like you to be that way.”

Rose says they crossed several check-points driving from Beirut to Damascus and had bullet-proof vests, but did not wear them. “But we didn’t have armed guards and all those kinds of things,” he told colleagues Gayle King and Norah O’Donnell.

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U.S. Govt. Learned of Charlie Rose’s Assad Interview the Same Time Everyone Else Did

With a choice of having Anthony Weiner, Lady Gaga or Bashar al-Assad on his morning show, CBS News president David Rhodes will take door number 3 any day.

“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.

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VICE in North Korea: ‘I Know Who You Are, I Don’t Like You, and I Don’t Like Your Company’

Rodman, Duffy, Globetrotters

When VICE correspondent Ryan Duffy landed in Pyongyang, North Korea in March, he and his crew were not greeted particularly warmly.

“We were on the bus from the airport to the hotel, and one of the minders sat down next to [VICE producer] Jason and I and said ‘I know who you are, I don’t like you, and I don’t like your company,’” Duffy recalled, at a screening of the season finale of “VICE” on HBO.

The VICE crew were engaged in a game of gonzo journalism with the North Korean regime, conceived when VICE co-founder Shane Smith and a colleague were on a train traveling through Siberia, looking to shoot footage on North Korean labor camps. Smith was banned from returning to North Korea after the documentaries he shot were viewed by the government.

“The reality of it was that I saw what everybody else saw,” Smith said. “We wanted to see something that wasn’t shot, that wasn’t out there, that wasn’t the same tour over and over again.”

They decided that the key to getting into the country, and seeing a side of it that hadn’t been seen, was through basketball diplomacy, knowing that Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un was a huge Chicago Bulls fans.

“We reached out to a few Chicago Bulls, and [Dennis] Rodman said yes,” Smith recalled. “Michael Jordan’s camp was not interested, I believe.”

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CBS Sports Ups David Berson to President

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.”

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CBS CEO Les Moonves: ‘Great Drama Belongs In Primetime… Not At 7 In The Morning’

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.

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CBS’ Attkisson: ‘There Hasn’t Been an Appetite for the Stories I’ve Offered on Benghazi’

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.”

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Mika Brzezinski Reveals Food Obsession, Gives Away Chocolate Chip Cookies

If you watch “Morning Joe” you may already know this, but Mika Brzezinski is obsessed. Now she’s written a book — her third — about one particular obsession: America’s food addiction, and her own.

Brzezinski was feted at a book launch event last evening overlooking Central Park, where her morning partner Joe Scarborough described the root of Mika’s obsession: “If you know the Brzezinski family, you know why she has the issues she has,” Scarborough joked. “They are crazy, brilliant, and always striving for perfection.”

In “Obsessed” Brzezinski describes her history of food obsession, distorted body image and her struggle to be thin. It is dedicated to her two teenage daughters, Emilie and Carlie. “Girls, this book is for you,” Brzezinski said in her remarks as she asked them to “get off Snapchat and come forward.”

“I don’t want it to take 30 years for you to realize what it has taken me to realize.”

In the crowed, we spotted NBC’s Willie Geist, iVillage’s Kelly Wallace, CBS’s Leslie Stahl, MSNBC President Phil Griffin and CBS News chairman Jeff Fager. The “Morning Joe” crew was there including EP Alex Korson and former EP, now CBS News VP of programming Chris Licht. Also, Donny Deutsch, Joy Behar, Tina Brown and Sir Harold Evans.

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