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Posts Tagged ‘Ted Turner’

Ted Turner On What He Misses From His CNN Days: ‘The action, there is lots of action’

CNN founder Ted Turner returned to the channel yesterday to be interviewed by Wolf Blitzer. Blitzer asked Turner about saving the planet, his son Teddy’s failed run for a GOP nomination in South Carolina, and of course, CNN.

“And so you see what’s going on and so you — you’re — you miss it, right?” Blitzer asked.

“Yes, sure, I miss it,” Turner replied

“What do you miss the most about it?” Blitzer said.

“The action, there is lots of action,” Turner responded.

Jane Fonda: ‘Newsroom’ Character ‘Rupert Murdoch that’s been marinated in a little Ted Turner’

Actress Jane Fonda is a guest on tomorrow’s edition of “Katie,” and among other things she talks to Katie Couric about her character on the HBO series “The Newsroom.” Fonda plays Leona Lansing, the CEO of Atlantis World Media, the parent company of Atlantis Cable News. Fonda, of course, was once married to Ted Turner, the founder of CNN.

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CNN Turns 32

32 years ago today, cable history was made when CNN flickered to life. What started as a crazy idea in the mind of Ted Turner became a reality on June 1st, 1980 with David Walker and Lois Hart anchoring. The first story? President Jimmy Carter visiting civil rights leader Vernon Jordan in the hospital:

Earlier this year Turner appeared on CNN’s “Piers Morgan Tonight,” and Morgan asked Turner what he wanted to achieve with CNN:

“I wanted to better inform the world,” Turner said.

“Do you feel that you succeeded?” Morgan replied.

“Yes,” Turner responded.

Ted Turner: CNN Was To Be ‘The New York Times’ Of TV News, Not ‘The Daily News’

As we noted yesterday, the lead in-studio guest on “Piers Morgan Tonight” last night was CNN founder Ted Turner. Turner, who has criticized CNN in the past for eschewing certain types of news (science, international) for other types (politics), said that he still holds the network in the highest regard:

“I wanted CNN to be the New York Times for the news business, not The Daily News. I wanted it to be The New York Times. And I thought that for the long-term, that would be the best position to be in, even if the ratings weren’t the greatest. If you had the most prestige and you were the network that everybody turned to in times of a crisis, that that was the most important position, in the news business, to hold.”

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Turner also told Morgan about the experience of being fired from the company he founded, and losing upwards of $10 million a day:

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A Big Night Of Interviews For ‘Piers Morgan Tonight’

CNN’s “Piers Morgan Tonight” has a pair of big interviews tonight. Former President George W. Bush, who has only given a handful of interviews since leaving office, will be a guest on the program

Update: Bush will not be in-studio, but will be appearing in the “Keeping America Great” segment, which is set in the field. He will be talking about mountain biking, veterans, etc, so don’t expect any blockbuster revelations.

In addition, CNN founder Ted Turner–who has had some harsh things to say about the network he once ran–will also be appearing.

Interestingly, Bush is on just a few days after former CBS News anchor Dan Rather appeared on the show, where he stood by the claims he made on the network regarding Bush’s Texas Air National Guard service. That story led to Rather’s departure from CBS.

It should make for some interesting TV.

Ted Turner On Creating a TV News Channel Today: ‘Would you make it a serious news network?’

CNN founder Ted Turner is profiled by The Hollywood Reporter, looking at what he has been up to since leaving the media world. Among the revelations, while he still watches CNN, he doesn’t have the same affection for sister network HLN (formerly CNN Headline News):

Turner doesn’t pay attention to TV anymore, other than CNN. “I don’t watch entertainment,” he says. As for CNN’s sister network, HLN, “the News and Views Network” featuring Nancy Grace: “I haven’t watched in years. I want to see serious news.”

Turner also looks back wistfully on CNN’s founding, and wonders if the same thing could even happen in today’s fragmented TV marketplace:

“It’s been 12 years since I’ve been gone, but if you only had one news network, and there really was only one when CNN was there, would you make it a serious news network?” he ponders. “When you’ve got dozens — or many — then you can go in different formats. You could go right-wing like Fox News, you could go after a segment of the market and maybe you would be more successful than if you were going for the whole market.” Looking back, even he admits: “CNN wasn’t perfect. We spent several days when Jessica McClure fell down the well, and we covered O.J. [Simpson] driving around L.A. But those were such interesting stories.”

The story also looks back on the rough days that followed Turner as he was trying to build CNN

CNN’s prominence today makes it easy to forget that it was almost stillborn — not least when the satellite it required simply disappeared, forcing Turner to mount a life-or-death legal battle to get a slot on another one.

Throughout CNN’s emergence, nobody believed an all-news, all-the-
time network could function — except Turner. But he was convinced that audiences wanted a venue where they could find information whenever 
they wanted, and from the beginning proclaimed his faith in the enterprise, announcing, “We won’t be signing off until the world ends.”

Read the entire profile here.

Jane Fonda Joining Sorkin’s HBO Series ‘Newsroom’

HBO has cast Jane Fonda in its upcoming cable news series from Aaron Sorkin, currently titled “The Newsroom.”

According to TV Line’s Michael Ausiello, Fonda “will play Leona Lansing, the CEO of cable news network’s parent company. She’s a titan and her corporate concerns often conflict with the reporting of the news outlet she owns.”

As Ausiello notes, Fonda’s character sounds suspiciously like CNN founder Ted Turner, someone she would know a thing or two about. Fonda was married to Turner from 1991-2001.

Ted Turner: Rupert Murdoch ‘Going to Have to Step Down’

Bloomberg’s Betty Liu talked with CNN founder Ted Turner about his one-time media rival Rupert Murdoch and the phone hacking scandal.

“I think he’s going to have to step down,” Turner said. “This is serious. It’s going against the law. Not even Rupert Murdoch should be allowed to break the law.”

“He was chairman of the board. He’s responsible,” said Turner, the founder of CNN who sold Turner Broadcasting to Time Warner in 1996. “I took responsibility when I ran my company. You never heard me say, ‘Well, I didn’t know.’”

About 5 minutes in for the Murdoch comments:

Maria Bartiromo becomes first female journalist inducted into Cable Hall of Fame

CNBC's Maria Bartiromo presented the Cable Hall of Fame award by Larry Satkowiak, CEO of The Cable Center. (Photo: Oscar Einzig)

The Cable Show, the trade show for the National Cable Television Association, is underway this week in Chicago. And last night at the gala event of the week, the Cable Hall of Fame, CNBC’s Maria Bartiromo became the first female journalist inducted into the Hall. (CNN’s Bernard Shaw and trade publisher Paul Maxwell are also members.)

We talked with the Money Honey this morning between panels she’s moderating at the trade show. She’ll also be anchoring “Closing Bell” from Wrigley Field this afternoon, because tonight the Brooklyn native and Yankees fan is throwing out the first pitch as the Cubs take on the Milwaukee Brewers. “I’ve been going to Central Park to practice,” Bartiromo tells TVNewser. “It’s 60 feet! I just want to get it over the plate.”

TVNewser: Congratulations. I know it’s a busy day for you. What an honor. The Hall of Fame is mostly made up of cable innovators and executives. How did a journalist get on that list?

Maria Bartiromo: Thanks Chris. They tell me I’m the first female journalist on the list and I’m in awe of that. When they asked me to join this illustrious group that includes John Malone, Ted Turner, and Jeff Bewkes, I started to think about my career. Where has the time gone? I started my career as an intern at CNN covering live events, producing under Lou Dobbs. That was 20 years ago and now it’s been 19 years at CNBC covering the financial ups and downs. I feel incredibly proud — proud to be part of this industry.

TVNewser: Who are some of the people behind your success?

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Former CNN President Burt Reinhardt Dead at 91

Reinhardt (Credit: CNN)

Former CNN president Burt Reinhardt, who led the network through a phase of enormous growth from 1983-1990, has passed away at age 91. Reinhardt was one of the network’s first employees, joining in 1979, as Ted Turner prepared the effort to launch the world’s first 24-hour news channel.

Reinhardt got his start as a combat photographer during World War II, and served as an editor of the newsreels that used to run before feature films. He got his start in TV news at UPI, where he supervised the wire agency’s TV operations.

“Burt was a colleague and also a friend. More than anyone, he built the foundation for CNN’s global leadership in news,” said Phil Kent, Chairman and CEO, Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. in a statement. “He was an innovator and a mentor to many. He was one of the finest people I have known, and his loss is felt by all of his friends and colleagues across the world.”

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