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Posts Tagged ‘Ryan Smith’

Whitney Houston Funeral Getting Extensive Cable Coverage

The funeral for Whitney Houston will take place on Saturday in Newark, New Jersey, and while it is private, cable news is planning extensive coverage.

The funeral will be streamed online at the AP’s livestream page, so fans can bypass cable news if they so choose. In addition, users can expect to watch the AP stream on many news sites including FoxNews.com and CNN.com (even though CNN does not subscribe to AP content, the AP’s coverage is pool coverage, so CNN can use it). Those that do turn on their TV’s will have a number of options.

CNN seems to have the most comprehensive coverage lined up, with Piers Morgan, Don Lemon and Soledad O’Brien anchoring from 11:30 AM-2 PM. Saturday and Sunday evening Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Randi Kaye will host primetime specials looking at Houston’s life.

Fox News will be covering the funeral live from 11:30 AM-2PM, with Jon Scott and Uma Pemmaraju anchoring in New York. Kelly Wright will report from outside the church in Newark.

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HLN Revamps Dayside Anchor Line-Up

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First on TVNewser: With the recent departures of both Chuck Roberts and Richard Lui, HLN has revamped its dayside anchor line-up with the shuffling of some talent.

Mike Galanos, who had been anchoring “Prime News,” will now anchor five four hours of HLN’s afternoon news programing (12-4pmET) with Richelle Carey, Susan Hendricks, and Christi Paul, among others, forming a Mon-Fri supporting ensemble. (Carey will continue anchoring 4-5pmET.)

TruTV’s “In Session” anchor Vinnie Politan will do double duty with the two Turner networks, hosting HLN’s “Prime News” at 6pmET while continuing with “In Session.” Also from “In Session,” Ryan Smith, who will be a contributor on “Morning Express.”

For Christi Paul, the HLN duties are tacked on to her “In Session” gig. An HLN spokesperson tells us, “In Session,” “will remain true to its core mission as the only place on TV for real-life courtroom coverage.”

Finally, Natasha Curry becomes the solo anchor of HLN Weekend News. She will continue to be the back-up for Robin Meade and will rotate with Hendricks and Carey as anchors of the 10amET hour.

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Vinnie Politan Returns to TV as Host of “In Session”

Politan_11.6.jpgWith next Friday marking the final day of production of truTV’s “In Session” programming from New York, the network has announced new anchors who will debut from CNN headquarters in Atlanta the following Monday. Among the new hosts is a familiar name: Vinnie Politan. A long-time CourtTV and truTV host, Politan left the network in March, 2008.

The other “In Session” host is Ryan Smith who has appeared as a legal commentator on many networks. He specializes in entertainment law and hosted a show on BET called “My Two Cents.”

The new “In Session” will feature reports from Beth Karas, who has been with the network since 1994.

In Session has also named three contributors: Mike Brooks, who will be the network’s law enforcement analyst, Midwin Charles and Sunny Hostin.

truTV remains based in New York but the daytime production “In Session,” which airs from 9amET-3pmET is shifting from studios in New York to studios in Atlanta. The production team in Atlanta is part of HLN.

Fired CBS Producer Talks About $50M Suit

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In an interview this afternoon with TVNewser, fired CBS News Producer Dick Jefferson says his dismissal was like “being kicked out of your family.” Jefferson, an 18-year veteran of the network is suing CBS for $50 million, and naming Senior VP Linda Mason in the suit.

He was let go Nov. 20, 2006 for what he calls a “fraudulent performance issue.”

Jefferson and a co-worker, Ryan Smith, were severely injured in a gay-bashing attack on the island of St. Martin in April 2006.jefferson.jpg

CBS responded to the suit calling it a “vicious and unconscionable attack on Mason’s character.” Jefferson says he “would be glad to call as witnesses every correspondent and anchor, past and present” should the case go to trial.

Jefferson claims he was unduly fired for bringing too much unwanted attention to his case. In the days after the attack, he appeared on “Good Morning America”, MSNBC and Viacom’s gay-themed channel Logo.

When asked about CBS News paying thousands of dollars to airlift Jefferson and Smith from their vacation to receive proper treatment, Jefferson says “I am very grateful, Ryan owes his life to that decision” but that’s “not what this is about, this is about Linda (who Jefferson calls a mentor) saying it’s my job to protect CBS News.”

“I tried to explain to Sean (McManus, President of CBS News & Sports) that the lawsuit is not my personal vendetta against the company, they are family, it was really weird, like being kicked out of your family.”

Ryan Smith still works with CBS News at its newsmagazine “48 Hours.”

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