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Posts Tagged ‘Sunny Hostin’

As Malaysia Airlines Coverage Continues, CNN Benches Some Shows

cnn logo_304x200We’ve been reporting on the reporting of missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 all week, especially the nonstop coverage on CNN as critics and defenders chime in on the network’s obsession with the story.

As ratings rise, CNN has benched some shows that don’t fit the missing plane bill. “Crossfire” has been off for more than a week, last seen on CNN Monday, March 10. The planned Monday night experimental shows, “The Don Lemon Show,” and “Making The Case,” co-hosted by CNN legal analysts Sunny Hostin and Mark Geragos were replaced Monday night by a full-hour MH370 special report hosted by Lemon.

Tonight’s “Death Row Stories” at 10pmET, which has been re-airing Sunday’s episode, will not air.  In its place will be another MH370 special report also hosted by Lemon. Episode 3 of “Chicagoland” will air as scheduled tomorrow at 10pmET.

The decision to preempt “Crossfire” — which would have been a TV viewing speedbump at 6:30pm — is paying off in the ratings: Wolf Blitzer anchoring from 5-7pmET was CNN’s most-watched show Monday. TVNewser hears “Crossfire” won’t be back until at least next week, longer if the Malaysian Airlines flight is still missing.

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On CNN, Experimenting at 10, ‘AC360′ at 11

don lemonFor the next month, CNN will be trying out a series of different programs each night in the 10pm hour.

Starting Monday, CNN anchor Don Lemon returns to primetime with “The Don Lemon Show.” The half-hour program will lead in to another new weekly show, “Making The Case” at 10:30pm.

Tuesdays at 10pm will be one-hour special reports; Wednesdays at 10 will see “Death Row Stories;” “Chicagoland” airs Thursdays at 10; and on Fridays its “CNN Spotlight” followed by “Unguarded with Rachel Nichols” at 10:30.

“AC360″ will return to the 11pm hour Monday through Thursday, a re-air of the 8pm hour (live in the event of breaking news.) Friday’s at 11pm is reserved for “Death Row Stories.” This will be the schedule for at least the next five weeks.

Late last year, Lemon hosted the limited-run 11pm show “11th Hour” while Erin Burnett was on maternity leave.

Lemon has also been part of the story as of late, getting into a Twitter spat with Fox News’ Gregg Jarrett when the verdict in the Michael Dunn trial was announced.

CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker told TVNewser’s Alissa Krinsky last night at the premiere of “Chicagoland” he’s fine with his anchors showing emotion.

“I think that what you will find is that our anchors and hosts are still objective and presenting the news,” Zucker says. “Are there occasions where they show their passion, and show their emotion? Yes. And is that fine? Yes. And we’re okay with that.”

CNN 10pm Experimentation Continues With ‘Making The Case’

Geragos HostinCNN legal analysts Mark Geragos and Sunny Hostin served as occasional panelists on Anderson Cooper‘s short-lived 10pm roundtable show, and now CNN is trying the pair out together in that same hour on “Making The Case.”

The half-hour show co-hosted by the attorneys will premiere Monday, March 10 at 10:30pmET. CNN insiders tell us it will be a weekly show running for five weeks.

Both Geragos and Hostin are familiar faces on CNN: they were on-air throughout last year’s George Zimmerman trial, often sparring against one another.

Geragos became well known nationally for defending Michael Jackson in his molestation case and Scott Peterson during his murder trial. In addition to her attorney credentials, Hostin previously served as a Fox News panelist on the “O’Reilly Factor,” appearing with Megyn Kelly in the legal segment “Is It Legal.”

It will be interesting to see if CNN sticks with this premiere date if the current top news story on the conflict between Russia and Ukraine persists into next week.

Philadelphia Abortion Doctor Kermit Gosnell Found Guilty

A Philadelphia jury has found former abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell guilty of three counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of three babies born alive. He was found not guilty on a fourth count.

Fox News was the first to report the verdict at 3:18pmET. Shannon Bream was outside the courthouse discussing how the judge was threatening to hold anyone in contempt for using cellphones in court as a means to deliver the verdict when her producer Kristin Brown ran to the live position with the news. Rehema Ellis, from the NBC newsroom, reported the guilty verdicts during MSNBC’s “The Cycle” at 3:19pmET. CNN’s Sunny Hostin reported the verdicts from outside the courthouse at 3:22.

Compared to this month’s other high-profile trial, the Gosnell case has seen relatively little coverage. Unlike Arizona, Pennsylvania does not allow cameras in the courtroom; additionally, the judge in the trial issued a gag order banning prosecution and defense lawyers from talking to reporters. And as Howard Kurtz said on “Reliable Sources” last month: “This is a gruesome case that journalists on both sides of the abortion question have told me is hard to stomach. That is especially true on television.”

Meanwhile, HLN, which has ramped up its trial coverage, reported the Gosnell verdict, while keeping cameras trained on another courtroom where another high-profile defendant was in front of a judge: OJ Simpson was in a Las Vegas courtroom today seeking a new trial in his 2008 robbery conviction.

The News About the New News Network

Here’s how several ABC programs reported Monday’s news of the new ABC News/Univision network:

  • :23 minutes into Monday’s “The View,” Barbara Walters: “My other home. ABC News. I want to congratulate them and the ABC News president Ben Sherwood on today’s announcement that they are joining forces with Univision.”
  • :12 minutes into “World News,” Diane Sawyer: “ABC News is joining forces with Univision (says Sawyer with Spanish inflection) … launching the first cable channel of its kind: a 24/7 news and lifestyle network, broadcasting in English, covering issues of particular interest to Hispanics in America.”
  • :24 minutes into “Nightline,” Terry Moran: “All of us at Nightline would like to welcome a new member to our broadcast family … We look forward to working with our colleagues there… very excited about it.”
  • 8:26am on “GMA,” Eva Longoria with Robin Roberts: “I think it’s important. I think it’s great that ABC is paying attention to the largest emerging market.” Roberts: “We got it goin’ on!”

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.