TVNewser Show TVSpy LostRemote AgencySpy PRNewser FishbowlNY FishbowlDC SocialTimes AllFacebook 10,000 Words GalleyCat UnBeige MediaJobsDaily

ABC

ABC News is the news gathering and program production division of the ABC TV network, a subsidiary of the Disney/ABC TV Group. ABC News programs include “Good Morning America,” “World News with Diane Sawyer,” “Nightline,” “20/20,” and “This Week.” James Goldston is the president of ABC News. He succeeded Ben Sherwood who was elevated to the position of co-president of the Disney/ABC TV Group in March 2014.

Judge Won’t Dismiss ‘Pink Slime’ Lawsuit

pink-slime-abc2A South Dakota judge has rejected ABC News’ bid to dismiss Beef Products Inc.’s “pink slime” defamation lawsuit, the Associated Press reports:

Attorneys for ABC say the network in each of its broadcasts stated the U.S. Food and Drug Administration deemed the product safe to eat. They say BPI might not like the phrase “pink slime,” but like all ground beef, it’s pink and has a slimy texture.

In her Thursday ruling, Judge Cheryle Gering dismissed some claims but allowed most to go forward. Gering ruled that ABC isn’t protected against liability by saying in its news reports that the product is beef, is safe and is nutritious.

Jeffrey W. Schneider, senior vice president of ABC News, noted that the ruling was on a preliminary motion to dismiss, not on the merits of the case. “We will defend our reporting vigorously on the merits,” Schneider said in a written statement.

BPI says the network’s coverage “led to the closure of three plants and roughly 700 layoffs by misleading consumers into believing the product is unsafe.” The company seeks $1.2 billion in damages. [h/t Huffington Post Media]

Former New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly Joins ABC News

*May 07 - 00:05*Ray Kelly, the former police commissioner of New York City, is joining ABC News as a consultant, Ben Sherwood announced this morning.

“A 43-year veteran of the NYPD, Commissioner Kelly’s vast knowledge will provide our viewers with an even deeper understanding of national security and intelligence issues at home and overseas. It is an honor and privilege to have him on our team,” Sherwood, the president of ABC News, wrote in a note to staff.

Kelly served as police commissioner from 1992-94 under Mayor David Dinkins and from 2002-13 under Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Kelly is the first person to serve two non-consecutive tenures as police commissioner.

Kelly’s son, Greg Kelly, is a former Fox News anchor who currently anchors “Good Day New York” on WNYW, the Fox-owned station in New York City.

Read Sherwood’s full note after the jump. Read more

Juju Chang Named Anchor of ‘Nightline’

abc_juju_chang_090116_mainAs Cynthia McFadden packs for NBC, ABC is wasting no time in announcing her replacement at “Nightline.” ABC lifer Juju Chang has been named co-anchor of the ABC News broadcast effective immediately.

“Juju is the perfect example of someone whose dedication and tenacity to innovative reporting have paved the way for her success,” ABC/Disney co-president Ben Sherwood writes in a note to staff.

Chang, who has been with ABC News her entire career, starting as a desk assistant, is married to former NBC News boss Neal Shapiro, now president of WNET.

McFadden was one of the original anchors when “Nightline” went to a 3-anchor format in 2005, along with Martin Bashir and Terry Moran. Bashir left for MSNBC in 2010, replaced by Bill Weir. Last year, Dan Abrams replaced Moran who is now a foreign correspondent for ABC News. And when Weir left for CNN in October, Dan Harris took his spot.

In his note, Sherwood thanked McFadden for her 20 years of service. “Cynthia has been an amazing colleague, a loyal mentor to so many of our up and coming producers and I am personally grateful for her profound contributions to ABC News. It is with great fondness that I wish Cynthia the very best in her new adventure.”

Sherwood’s note after the jump…

Read more

Cynthia McFadden Jumps From ABC to NBC

cynthia mcfaddenAfter two decades at ABC News, “Nightline” anchor Cynthia McFadden is jumping to NBC News. She will be senior legal and investigative correspondent, contributing to NBC’s investigative unit across all NBC’s platforms.

“After 20 incredible years at ABC News I’ve decided to take on new challenges at NBC News,” McFadden said in a statement. “While it is not easy leaving the ‘Nightline’ anchor chair, the opportunity NBC offered to make a deep dive into the kind of reporting I am most passionate about— legal and investigative— was just too appealing to resist. I’m grateful to everyone at ABC for a marvelous journey and very much looking forward to joining my new colleagues at NBC.”

McFadden has anchored “Nightline” for the past nine years. She joined ABC News in 1994 as a legal correspondent.

“Cynthia McFadden is a rare talent — passionate about journalism, compassionate in her view of the world, truly gifted in the art of storytelling,” NBC News president Deborah Turness said. “Expert, experienced, and exceptional — NBC News is the perfect place for her, and I personally can’t wait for us to begin our journey together.”

More from NBC after the jump. Read more

Lara Spencer to Stay with ‘GMA’

LaraSpencerLara Spencer has re-signed with ABC News. Her contract was due to expire in May.

“This was a simple decision,” Spencer said in a statement. “I love what I do and I adore the people I work with. I am thrilled to be on this team and look forward to many more years.”

The show has seen the contracts of four of its five main talent come due around the same time. Sam Champion left the show in December and joined the Weather Channel. Robin Roberts re-signed with “GMA” a few week later. Josh Elliott is currently in negotiations with ABC, but could bolt for a better offer elsewhere.

Elliott joined “GMA” three years ago this month; Spencer followed two months later. A year later, “GMA” had beaten NBC’s “Today” show in the ratings for the first time in 16 years.

Spencer has been with ABC on and off since 1995, first as a reporter at WABC. She joined “GMA,” the first time in 1999 as national correspondent. “ABC has been her home for a long time, and she’s having a great ride,” a friend of Spencer’s tells TVNewser.

The Hollywood Reporter first reported the news.

NBC News Airs Special Report on Pres. Obama, Pope Francis Meeting

PopeObamaNBC News was the only broadcast news network to provide a network special report of President Obama’s first meeting with Pope Francis this morning.

Matt Lauer broke in at 5:13amET as the president arrived at the Vatican, with correspondent Anne Thompson alongside him in New York and White House Correspondent Peter Alexander reporting from Vatican City.

Many local stations in the eastern and central time zones carried the live pictures as the president and pope shook hands and sat down for what would be a :50 minute meeting.

“Good Morning America” and “CBS This Morning each led with the historic meeting. Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl reported from Vatican City for ABC, while Chief White House Correspondent Major Garrett reported live from Vatican City for CBS.

Ben Sherwood’s Champagne Toast from ABC News Colleagues

BEN SHERWOOD (PRESIDENT, ABC NEWS)ABC News president Ben Sherwood got a champagne toast from his senior team Tuesday following the news of his promotion to co-president of Disney/ABC TV. Sherwood was tapped for the top job on Monday. He’ll take over for Anne Sweeney early next year. It’s the first time an ABC News president has moved up to the top job at the network. “People are thrilled at the prospect of having an ally like Ben in Burbank,” an ABC insider tells TVNewser.

Sherwood took the red eye back to New York Tuesday morning. In the 9am editorial meeting he got a round of applause from ABC News staffers in New York and beyond. “He was very humble and gave credit to the whole news division,” says our source.

Sherwood has been the boss at ABC News a little over three years — but still the veteran news division chief having been in the job a few months longer than Jeff Fager and David Rhodes at CBS. Deborah Turness took over at NBC News last summer.

ABC News already has a sizable chunk of ABC real estate, with three hours a day of news between “GMA” “World News” and “Nightline,” as well as “20/20,” “Nightline Prime”, and other primetime specials. The news division also experimented with “Good Afternoon America” in the summer of 2012.

Sherwood’s senior staff, including show EPs, met around 3pm yesterday for a champagne toast. We hear none of them pitched Sherwood on a new ABC show… at least not yet. Sherwood’s first order of business will be to choose his successor at ABC News.

Ben Sherwood’s Disney Promotion ‘Came Together Between Space Mountain and Dumbo’

Ben SherwoodABC News president Ben Sherwood will be taking the red eye back to New York tonight from Los Angeles, along with his new title: Co-president of Disney/ABC.

In his first interview since his big promotion, Sherwood tells The Hollywood Reporter this all came together in the last couple of weeks: “[Disney chairman] Bob [Iger] talked to a number of internal candidates. I spoke to him a couple weeks ago. My family, we went on vacation last week. Turns out we happened to be in Orlando at Walt Disney World for the week. This all came together very quickly between Space Mountain and Dumbo the Flying Elephant.”

While his family will move back to Los Angeles this summer, Sherwood will be splitting time between New York and Burbank for the next 9 months, until he fully takes the reins at Disney/ABC early next year.  “I’m coming from a different part of the company — from news — and so it would be presumptuous that I would be doing anything but observing, listening and learning and contributing where I can,” Sherwood says

THR: The last successful news guy to take over an entertainment division was Jeff Zucker. Anything you learned from his tenure at NBC Universal?

Read more

Ben Sherwood to Succeed Anne Sweeney as President of Disney/ABC Television Group

Ben SherwoodABC News president Ben Sherwood will succeed Anne Sweeney as the president of the Disney/ABC Television group next year, Disney announced today. Sherwood will begin the transition immediately and take on the role of Co-President of Disney/ABC while also overseeing ABC News until his successor is named.

“Ben is one of those unique executives who combine rich creative experience with great business acumen. He’s also focused, strategic, and competitive, as evidenced by the success of GMA, the Yahoo deal that delivered ABC News online dominance, and his vision behind our new cable and digital joint venture, Fusion. These reasons, and many others, make Ben the ideal candidate to oversee the future of the Disney/ABC Television Group,” Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger said in a statement.

Sherwood has been the president of ABC News since 2010. Under his leadership, “Good Morning America” snapped the “Today” show’s 16-year winning streak. In a statement, he thanked Iger and Sweeney for their leadership, and ABC News staffers for their dedication.

“I must also thank the remarkable people of ABC News who inspire me every day with their creativity, dedication and spirit. I will keep their commitment to excellence and their fierce competitiveness firmly in mind as I move forward to meet this exciting new challenge,” he said.

The official announcement, as well as the internal note to ABC staffers from Sweeney, is after the jump.

Read more

Friday Newsmagazines See Big Growth

Screen Shot 2014-03-23 at 11.21.38 AM“20/20″ was Friday night’s No. 1 show, drawing 8.3 million viewers, tying a season high. The show was up +20% vs. last year in viewers and up +5% in the A25-54 demo. “20/20″ also came in first in the news demo for the 10pm hour. Two hours earlier, on NBC, “Dateline” brought in 7.6 million viewers, its best performance since Jan. 3 and winning its 8pm time period in the A25-54 and A18-49 demos. “Dateline” Friday was up +24% in viewers week-to-week.

<< PREVIOUS PAGENEXT PAGE >>