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Posts Tagged ‘Wendy Walker’

Katie Couric And Larry King Talk ‘The Date Heard ‘Round The World’

On tomorrow’s edition of “Katie,” Katie Couric talks to her longtime friend Wendy Walker, who was also Larry King‘s producer at CNN. As it happens, the former CNN host decided to make a surprise visit to Couric’s show, where the two discussed the heavily disputed date they went on.

Yes, that date.

Couric: “I even remember what you ate, you ordered veal poached in chicken stock because you just had bypass surgery. That was hot.”

King: “We sat next to each other, you wanted to see my scar.”

WATCH:
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CNN Ending Larry King Specials

CNN and Larry King have decided to end the quarterly specials featuring the former “Larry King Live” host.

King is believed to have nearly two years left on his contract with CNN, and he had two new specials in the pipeline before the decision was made to end them. It isn’t clear whether the agreement means that King is now free to appear on other networks, or whether he is still under contract with CNN.

“We have the greatest respect for Larry and wish him the best of luck with his new endeavors,” said the network in a statement.

“I have nothing but love and respect for CNN, and I’m looking forward to all the wonderful business opportunities that I will now dedicate my full time to,” said King in a statement.

The news was first reported by Joe Flint in the Los Angeles Times, who noted that King’s four-person staff may have to reapply for other jobs at the network. King’s longtime producer Wendy Walker will also be departing the company.

The agreement to end the specials is believed to have been made a number of weeks ago, though King appeared on CNN following the death of singer Whitney Houston this past weekend.

Katie Couric, Barbara Walters, Diane Sawyer and Brian Williams Honor Larry King

As we reported last night, all three broadcast evening news anchors, along with Barbara Walters, dropped in to CNN’s New York studios to pay their respects to Larry King during his final program.

We spoke to NBC’s Brian Williams earlier in the evening at the NBC holiday press party before he made the trek 10 blocks north to Time Warner Center to appear on the show.

ABC’s Diane Sawyer presented King with a gift: a custom set of suspenders–with all of their names stitched into it. “We spent all night stitching our names” Williams quipped.

CBS’ Katie Couric, who is good friends with King’s senior executive producer Wendy Walker, read King a poem that she wrote. Video of her tribute is after the jump.
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Wendy Walker Book Pushed Back to Coincide with End of Larry King Live

WendyWalker_7.21.jpgWendy Walker, who has been Larry King‘s executive producer since 1993, has written a book about life in TV news. Producer: Lessons Shared from 30 Years in Television, was to be released in early fall, but the publisher, Hachette Books, tells TVNewser the release date has been pushed back to Nov. 16 — around the time King will be wrapping up his show on CNN. A final chapter was added after King announced last month that he’d be stepping down.

Walker, a former CNN White House producer, and BFF to CBS News anchor Katie Couric, lives in San Diego, and has remotely produced LKL for most of the last decade.

TVNewser has also learned that Walker’s job with CNN is secure even after King signs off. She’ll stay with King to produce his four annual specials. As is customary, other LKL staffers will have to re-apply for jobs on whatever show (Piers Morgan, anyone?) takes its place.

Justin Bieber, Lenny Kravitz, Tim McGraw Headline CNN Telethon hosted by Larry King

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Tomorrow night, CNN’s Larry King hosts a special 2-hour “Larry King Live” telethon to provide relief to those affected by the BP oil spill with reports from CNN anchors/correspondents Anderson Cooper, Soledad O’Brien, Kyra Phillips and Rob Marciano along the Gulf.

“Disaster In The Gulf: How You Can Help” airs at 8pmET.

As King described it on his show the other night, Ryan Seacrest will be “kind of co-hosting as well,” along with special celebrity guests including Justin Bieber, Cameron Diaz, Tim McGraw, Kathy Griffin, and Lenny Kravitz.

“The Gulf oil spill is a disaster both national and natural in scope, and the point of this effort is to get immediate relief to the people and Wildlife who are in urgent need,” says longtime CNN Larry King Live Senior Executive Producer Wendy Walker. “The telethon’s proceeds go directly to the relief organizations who are working on the frontlines to do just that.”

More details after the jump…

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Bauder Asks, ‘When was the last must-see Larry King interview?’

King_4.19.jpgThe AP’s David Bauder has one of the most comprehensive stories written about CNN’s Larry King — not about the divorce, or non-divorce — but about what Larry King once meant and now means to CNN.

These are troubled times for “Larry King Live” as it approaches its 25th anniversary in June. The show’s viewership for the first three months of the year dropped 44 percent from 2009, and it usually trails Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity and MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow in the time slot.

Once a pioneer, King now fights for relevancy.

Think about it. When was the last must-see Larry King interview?

For a network based in Atlanta and with a large New York office, King usually works out of Los Angeles. His executive producer since 1992, Wendy Walker, works from her home in San Diego, where CNN has built a control room for her. Some who know King suggested that’s a disconnected arrangement, and wonder whether he is getting the support he needs in booking and promotion. If you see an ad for CNN, it’s far more likely to feature Cooper or Blitzer.

King’s simple, conversational style often annoys people who want interviews with more rigor and preparation. His supporters believe the everyman approach has been underestimated but worry that King, at age 76, is losing a step. Mistaking Roman Polanski for Charles Manson earlier this year was cringe-worthy. Last week, King seemed unaware of “Family Guy.” And when he asked Jerry Seinfeld if his popular sitcom was canceled, it became an Internet embarrassment.

TVNewser columnist Gail Shister tells Bauder, “It’s almost as if he’s interviewing on automatic pilot and he’s picking up a ball game through his fillings.”

So, what’s CNN to do?

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Larry King and Shawn Southwick File for Divorce

shawn-southwick-king-checks-into-rehab.jpg TMZ reports that Larry King and his eighth wife Shawn Southwick are headed to splitsville. According to the site, both parties filed for divorce today after having a huge argument at their Beverly Hills home. TMZ also alleges that Southwick has accused the CNN star of having affairs with her close relatives.

While King himself has yet to comment, his attorney Susan Carter spoke on his behalf. “It’s a very sad day in Larry’s life and he hopes the divorce will be amicable. Larry loves his children very much and will be an integral part of their lives.”

King is reportedly seeking joint custody of their two sons.

>More: King did not make any mention of the divorce on his show this evening. He closed the program by expressing condolences to LKL Senior EP Wendy Walker on the death of her mother, Miriam Walker.