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Posts Tagged ‘Tom Brokaw’

Tom Brokaw Diagnosed With Cancer

tom_brokaw_01NBC News special correspondent Tom Brokaw is being treated for multiple myeloma, TVNewser has learned.

Brokaw, who turned 74 last week, was diagnosed with the bone marrow cancer in August at the Mayo Clinic.

“With the exceptional support of my family, medical team and friends, I am very optimistic about the future and look forward to continuing my life, my work and adventures still to come,” Brokaw says in a statement. “I remain the luckiest guy I know.”

Throughout his treatment, Brokaw has continued to work on NBC News projects, including a two-hour documentary on the assassination of JFK, appearances on “TODAY,” “Nightly News with Brian Williams,” “Meet the Press” and MSNBC.

He is also contributing to NBC’s coverage of the Sochi Olympics from New York.

“I am very grateful for the interest in my condition,” says Brokaw, “but I also hope everyone understands I wish to keep this a private matter.”

Lisa Myers Leaving NBC News

lisa myersAfter more than 30 years as a political and investigative correspondent, Lisa Myers is leaving NBC News.

“I have had more than 30 fascinating years at NBC News, learning from and working alongside the best of the best, including journalists who paved the way for many of us: Tom Brokaw and Tim Russert,” Myers said in a note to staffers sent by Washington bureau chief Ken Strickland this afternoon.

“I will greatly miss my many talented friends throughout the network, to whom I owe much, and who represent the best of journalism. I greatly appreciate the company granting my request to change gears and pursue new horizons.”

Strickland praised Myers’ “tenacity, integrity and commitment to journalism.” She joined NBC News in 1981 from The Washington Star, where she was the White House correspondent.

“I could tick off the numerous awards that Lisa has received over the years—and there are plenty— but perhaps more important than critical acclaim is the positive impact that her reporting has had on the lives of many,” Strickland wrote.

Strickland’s note is after the jump. Read more

Bill O’Reilly Responds to Tom Brokaw

OReillyBrokawTVNewser interviewed Tom Brokaw last week as he took part in a book event for his former “Today” show co-anchor Jane Pauley. In our interview, we asked about the sustainability of the three network evening newscasts. Brokaw said most people he talks to think Fox News host Bill O’Reilly “is the most popular guy in news.” Brokaw tells them that O’Reilly “would finish dead last” up against the evening newscasts.

Well, that was red meat for O’Reilly, and last night he responded in his “Talking Points Memo.”

“Dead last? Really? Me?,” said O’Reilly. Then he talked about how, yes, the evening newscasts do have a larger audience than his, but that’s because they “are on all TV sets in America, with low dial positions.  Fox News, you have to pay for,” said O’Reilly, “You have to hunt for us, and thank God you do.”

“Tom Brokaw should be happy, overjoyed, thrilled, that cable news and ‘The Factor’ exists,” said O’Reilly, who invited Brokaw on the show to talk about his comments. “He shouldn’t be running us down. He should be amazed because we provide a voice you would never hear on the network news.”

Brokaw’s spokesperson tells TVNewser the NBC Newsman wouldn’t have been able to be on O’Reilly’s show yesterday, “due to an important personal commitment,” but that Brokaw “would like to appear on the show in the near future.” In fact, prior to O’Reilly’s comments NBC was working on alternative dates for him to appear.

WATCH:

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Tom Brokaw and Jane Pauley Together Again

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Former “Today” co-anchors Tom Brokaw and Jane Pauley reunited recently for an event at NYC’s 92nd Street Y to talk about Pauley’s new book.

Brokaw and Pauley recounted the period in the late 1970′s/early 1980′s they anchored together.

“There was chaos at NBC,” Brokaw said. “I had been the White House Correspondent; I go from covering Nixon resigning into doing morning television. Jane, not that long out of Indianapolis, through Chicago, arrives with the whole world looking in. We were put in this life raft and sent a sea.”

Joining “Today” right out of college, Pauley remembers being told not to mention her age.

“I remember her (Barbara Howard) taking me aside, privately, and saying ‘Jane, you gotta stop telling people how old you are. They’re going to remember,’” Pauley said.

“I’ve always been future-oriented, but in terms of my career, I felt like I was living minute-to-minute,” she continued, referencing the 13-week contract cycle she worked under back then.

The two are grateful they remained friends.

 

The Saturday Ticker: Bloomberg’s Back, ‘Cups’ Filled, Digging a Dinosaur

  • The NYTimes reports Michael Bloomberg is back at his old company and taking a hands-on role: “He sits with the TV operation and media group on the fifth floor of the Bloomberg tower, in the same cluster of desks as Justin Smith, the new chief executive of Bloomberg Media.”

  • Three Cups of Tea author Greg Mortenson defends his bestseller to NBC’s Tom Brokaw and says the stories in his book happened, but not in the sequence or the timing that he wrote. The interview airs Tuesday on “Today.”

  • From whales to dinosaurs. CNN Films has acquired Dinosaur 13, a documentary that follows paleontologist Peter Larson and “Sue,” a 65 million year-old fossilized Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton. Dinosaur 13 will be shown in theaters this year and on CNN later.

Tom Brokaw Defends Evening News: ‘Bill O’Reilly Would Finish Dead Last’

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We caught up with NBC News Special Correspondent Tom Brokaw earlier this week at NYC’s 92nd Street Y where the NBC Newsman interviewed his former “Today’ co-host Jane Pauley about her new book. Brokaw, who anchored “NBC Nightly News” for 22 years, defended the network evening newscasts.

“That audience is so much more substantial than people realize,” Brokaw said. “When I talk to audiences, I say, ‘How many of you think that Bill O’Reilly is the most popular guy in news?’ and they all raise their hands. I say, ‘Bill O’Reilly would finish dead last if he were on the evening news.’”

Brokaw goes on to recount the strong numbers the three evenings newscasts drew last week: “Nothing else in America delivers that kind of audience.”

Sorry is Easy. In the Case of Martin Bashir, Suspension Seems to be the Hardest Word

Martin Bashir 304Judging strictly by precedent at MSNBC, if Martin Bashir had called Sarah Palin a ‘cocksucking fag,’ ‘right wing slut,’ ‘dick,’ ‘pimp,’ or ‘nappy headed ho,’ he would be on suspension, at the very least.

Instead, Bashir is a free man. All he said about Palin on Nov. 15 was that she should be forced to have someone defecate in her mouth and urinate in her eyes as punishment for her remarks on slavery.

What’s wrong with this picture? Plenty, if one considers MSNBC’s long history of Foot in Mouth disease. In every case, the commentator was either suspended or fired. In every case, the perps have been men, and in every case but one, the broadcast slurs have been aimed at women.

Ten days ago, actor Alec Baldwin was benched for two weeks after he was caught on video calling a paparazzi a ‘cocksucking fag.’ He may not return.

In 2011, Ed Schultz and Mark Halperin were both suspended — Schultz for labelling conservative commentator Laura Ingraham a ‘right wing slut,’ and Halperin for describing President Obama as a ‘dick.’ (Sidebar: If it had been Nixon, Halperin would have been technically correct.)

In ’08, David Shuster served two weeks for saying that Chelsea Clinton was being pimped out to support her mother’s campaign. And in ’07, Don Imus’ description of the Rutgers women’s basketball team as ‘nappy headed hos’ got him fired.

Like all his predecessors, Bashir apologized – the latest to join the celebrity culture of contrition. In a statement Friday, MSNBC said Bashir had also apologized to the Palin family, that he’s “committed to elevating the discourse” and that the network was handling the matter internally.

Still, many critics argue that Bashir deserves harsher punishment.

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Networks Plan Special Coverage of JFK Moment of Silence

The networks are planning special reports this afternoon marking the moment Pres. John F. Kennedy died, 50 years ago today. A moment of silence is planned for 1:30pmET, followed by the singing of “America the Beautiful” by the U.S. Naval Academy Men’s Glee Club. The network special reports will begin at 1:25pm.

Bob Schieffer, who was in Ft. Worth/Dallas 50 years ago today, will anchor the report for CBS News from Dallas. George Stephanopoulos anchors for ABC News with Cokie Roberts in New York and Byron Pitts in Dallas.

Brian Williams will anchor a special report for NBC live from Dealey Plaza in Dallas, joined by Tom Brokaw in New York. NBC’s special report will begin with audio of the original 1963 news bulletin from Don Pardo, who is still with NBC as the announcer for “Saturday Night Live.” WATCH:

JFK Specials a Draw for Networks; CBS Sees Biggest Numbers Since 1996

OsgoodKennedy50 years later, there’s still great interest in the assassination of Pres. John F. Kennedy. The networks and news shows have been producing special reports all week. And viewers are tuning in in big numbers:

  • A special edition of “CBS Sunday Morning with Charles Osgood” generated the broadcast’s largest audience since February 4, 1996 drawing 6.23m viewers. As a comparison, that’s more than the weekday averages of the morning shows.
  • CBS’s Bob Schieffer anchored “Face the Nation” from Dallas last Sunday. The show had its biggest viewership in 12 years — since Sunday, Sept. 16, 2001. 4.57m viewers watched the broadcast making it the No. 1 public affairs show last Sunday.
  • Saturday night, CBS News broadcast “As it Happened: John F. Kennedy: 50 Years,” also hosted by Schieffer. The show was first in viewers and households at 9pm drawing 4.56m viewers.
  • Sunday night CNN aired “The Assassination of President Kennedy.” Back-to-back airings at 9pmET and at 11pmET won the cable news ratings in both total viewers and the demo. The 9pm airing drew 720,000 viewers / 201,000 in the demo; and at 11pm, 648,000 viewers watched with 238,000 in the demo.

Coverage will culminate tomorrow, the actual anniversary. Tom Brokaw and Dan Rather will be live in studio on NBC’s “Today” while Brian Williams will anchor “NBC Nightly News” and Scott Pelley will anchor “CBS Evening News” from Dallas.

Dan Rather: CBS ‘Trying To Airbrush Me Out Of Their History’

Rather1963Dan Rather to CBS: Get over it.

Despite the scorched earth he left behind, Rather insists he’s baffled as to why his alma mater of 44 years did not invite him to participate in its 50th anniversary coverage of the Kennedy assassination.

“Was I surprised? Let the record show I paused,” says Rather, 82, who as a young CBS reporter covering JFK’s visit to Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963, broke the news that the President was dead. “Yes, I was surprised.”

“I am an optimist…. In my optimism, I thought that maybe, just maybe, what was developing as I left CBS would fade and be past. Looking back on it, they were trying to airbrush me out of their history, like the Kremlin. I didn’t understand it while it was happening…

“I had hoped that whatever animus was there, as time goes by, would fade, and maybe they would change their minds. What’s next – I’m airbrushed out of Watergate coverage? Vietnam? Tiananmen Square? 9/11? Where does this lead?”

In fact, archival footage of Rather will be included in CBS’s special on Saturday, as will some of his previously-aired reminiscences. He will anchor his own retrospective Monday on AXS-TV, where he hosts ‘Dan Rather Reports.’ Also, he’ll appear with NBC’s Tom Brokaw on ‘Today’ Nov. 22.

CBS and Rather are not exactly on speaking terms. Since Memogate in 2004, he’s been a virtual persona non grata. Forced out as anchor after 24 years, he bitterly left the network in 2006 and later filed a $70 million suit. It was dismissed in 2009 by New York State’s highest court.

Though the suit cost him millions of dollars personally, he has no regrets. “It was about trying to save a body of work,” he says. “…There was no line at CBS running from Murrow to Cronkite to Rather. Rather, in effect, never existed…. Anybody in my position would have done what they could to preserve 44 years of work.”

Rather refuses to comment on the ongoing scandal at CBS’s “60 Minutes” involving Lara Logan’s report on Benghazi. She apologized on the air Sunday for having been “misled” by a security contractor who told inconsistent stories about being an eyewitness to the attack.

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