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Posts Tagged ‘Ken Jautz’

Barbara Walters, Charlie Rose, Diane Sawyer, Matt Lauer Gather for Piers Morgan Book Party

MorganLauer1On a big night of news, many TV news power players took time to drop by The Carlyle Hotel for Piers Morgan‘s book bash.

Morgan’s “Shooting Straight: Guns, God, Gays and George Clooney,” is a diary of his first three years at CNN, since taking over the timeslot of the legendary Larry King. Hosted by British GQ editor Dylan Jones at the swank Carlyle Restaurant, the guest list included everyone from Fareed Zakaria and Jenny McCarthy to Donald Trump and Tony Bennett. “If there’s a cooler man alive, I’ve not met him,” said Morgan of Bennett.

We also spotted Barbara Walters and Diane Sawyer, who arrived after updating the West Coast feed of “World News.” And morning anchors, Charlie Rose of CBS, and NBC’s Matt Lauer. Asked what he thought about his new “Today” show set, Lauer paused, then said, “It’s very orange.” It’s taking some getting used to, Lauer added.

Another morning host, CNN’s Chris Cuomo told us reports of troubled times at “New Day” are off the mark. “I’ve never had a closer working relationship with a co-anchor than I have with Kate (Bolduan),” Cuomo said. While ratings are growing — the program was up +29% in viewers and up +15% in the demo in the third quarter — Cuomo admits it’s going to take time to prove the show’s worth. “New Day” launched four months ago today. “Joe (Scarborough) told me it took 15 to 18 months for that show to break out,” he added, speaking of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

Back to Morgan who gave a special shout-out to CNN president Jeff Zucker, who’s been his boss twice, first at NBC and now at CNN.

“I had breakfast with Jeff when he was gone from NBC and I said, ‘wouldn’t it be funny if you turned up at CNN?” and he said, ‘Yeah, that’d be crazy,’ … and here he is.”

“I think we all feel a renewed sense of vigor about the place,” said Morgan.

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Albie Hecht Named General Manager of HLN

Spike TV founder Albie Hecht has been named executive vice president and general manager of HLN, CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker announced today. His appointment is effective September 30.

Hecht’s appointment comes on the heels on an executive reorganization at HLN and CNN. Scott Safon, the former HLN chief, departed the network at the end of August, and CNN/U.S. EVP Ken Jautz has been managing HLN in the interim.

“Three key factors made the decision to join HLN easy: the opportunity to further evolve a noted brand, reinvent news in a digital age and work for Jeff, an industry giant,” Hecht said in a statement. “Creating engaging and buzzed about content across multiple platforms is in my DNA, and I am excited to make magic with the talented team at HLN.”

Hecht is a former president of Nickelodeon Entertainment. He is currently the CEO of Worldwide Biggies, a digital entertainment studio based in New York.

More from HLN after the jump. Read more

HLN Finds Itself At Another Crossroads, As It Slates Primetime Health/Wellness Block

Later this year, HLN will start airing a two-hour health and wellness block on Sunday nights from 7-9 PM. The block will be based on the “Upwave” brand developed by parent company Turner Broadcasting, according to Variety. The formats and hosts are still to be determined, but the Upwave videos currently have a heavy focus on fitness and healthy eating (you can watch a sizzle reel here).

For HLN, it is another fork in the road as the channel has struggled to break apart from its bigger sibling and develop its own identity.

HLN is currently best known for its courtroom programming like “Nancy Grace,” but also features entertainment news programming like “Showbiz Tonight.” During the day (and when there isn’t a big trial), HLN’s programs seem geared to stay-at home moms, with a heavy emphasis on family-centric news programming. During the weekend it features long-form crime and mystery programming.

Now there may be cooking shows and fitness programs in primetime.

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Scot Safon Out At HLN, Andrew Morse Joins CNN In Leadership Rejiggering

CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker is reorganizing his executive team in a big way.

For starters, after 22 years at the company HLN chief Scot Safon will be departing at the end of August. Current CNN/U.S. chief and former HLN executive VP Ken Jautz will manage HLN in the interim.

“Recently, Scot approached me with the desire to take a well-deserved break, and to move on to the next phase of his career,” Zucker wrote in a memo to staff this morning. “I have enjoyed working with Scot, and I am truly sorry to see him go. But I do understand the desire to do something new.”

The CNN Worldwide chief also confirmed the addition of Bloomberg TV’s Andrew Morse, who will become senior VP of domestic newsgathering and digital editorial, reporting to Zucker. Meredith Artley, Sam Feist and Terence Burke will all now report to Morse.

Michael Bass will oversee New York and Atlanta programming, while talent and acquisitions chief Amy Entelis will now report directly to Zucker. Ken Jautz will oversee operations and finance at CNN/U.S. while managing HLN in Safon’s absence.

Tony Maddox will be giving up some of his domestic newsgathering responsibilities to focus exclusively on international coverage.

Zucker’s full memo, below.
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Bill O’Reilly Loves ‘Lincoln’: ‘You Know You’re Gonna Win Best Picture’

Fox News Channel’s Bill O’Reilly gives an enthusiastic two thumbs up for “Lincoln,” the new Steven Spielberg film which documents the final few months of the Civil War as Abraham Lincoln tries to get the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery through the House of Representatives.

TVNewser attended the screening and a Q&A with Spielberg, Daniel Day-Lewis, who plays Lincoln, and screenwriter Tony Kushner moderated by TIME’s Rick Stengel. Stengel called first on O’Reilly who asked Day-Lewis how long it took to prepare for the role. “It took a year,” Day-Lewis says. “It seemed preposterous at first … growing up in Southeast London” to play the 16th president of the United States.

O’Reilly then gave his seal of approval: “You know you’re going to win Best Picture.” Then, to Day-Lewis, “and you’re going to win Best Actor.” And to Spielberg: “And you’re going to win Best Director and [Tommy Lee] Jones is going to win Best Supporting Actor.” Jones plays “Radical Republican” Pennsylvania Congressman Thaddeus Stevens.

Before the screening we had a chance to talk with O’Reilly, author of “Killing Lincoln” on its 55th week on the New York Times Best-Sellers list, this week at No. 5. His “Killing Kennedy” is No. 1 on the list for the second straight week.

We asked the Fox News star if he was excited by the news that FNC chairman and CEO Roger Ailes had signed on for another four years. “Excited? We’d be shocked if he hadn’t,” said O’Reilly.

Other notable tvnewsers at the event, “60 Minutes” correspondent Lesley Stahl, who had a revealing feature on Spielberg last Sunday, “CBS This Morning’s” Gayle King, Charlie Rose, and EP Chris Licht. MSNBC’s Chris Jansing and Lawrence O’Donnell, who ducked out during the Q&A to make it back to 30 Rock for his 10pm show. CNN execs Mark Whitaker, Ken Jautz and Bart Feder and ABC’s “This Week” EP Sandy Cannold.

And, after an early morning co-hosting “GMA,” Oprah Winfrey also attended. She gave a bear hug to Kushner. Then, exiting the theater — appropriately at the Loews Lincoln Square on the Upper

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Party for Jeffrey Toobin’s Latest Book, ‘The Oath’

Politics and law were the hot topics at Time Warner Center last night as colleagues, friends and family came out to fete Jeffrey Toobin and his new book, “The Oath,” about the often confrontational relationship between the Obama White House and the Supreme Court.

The book party included a discussion with CNN’s Senior Political Analyst David Gergen. Among the attendees: Mediaite’s Dan Abrams and his father, attorney Floyd Abrams; CNN anchor Ashleigh Banfield, execs Ken Jautz and Mark Whitaker; News Corp’s Joel Klein, Bloomberg’s Norm Pearlstine, The New Yorker‘s David Reminck as well as Toobin’s mother, Marlene Sanders, a former CBS News correspondent and Toobin’s wife Amy McIntosh.

CNN Hires New Anchor for Weekend Mornings

Victor Blackwell joins CNN as an Atlanta-based anchor and correspondent and will co-host CNN Newsroom Saturday mornings with Randi Kaye. Blackwell joins CNN from WPBF, the ABC affiliate in West Palm Beach. Blackwell has been the main co-anchor of WPBF’s newscasts since 2009. Before WPBF, Blackwell worked for WTLV/WJXX in Jacksonville, WPMT-TV in York, PA, and WHAG-TV in Hagerstown, MD.

“Victor is a passionate and committed journalist,” says CNN EVP Ken Jautz. “He will be a strong addition to our weekend morning team and in the field.”

Kyra Phillips Moves from CNN to HLN; Ashleigh Banfield Moves Off ‘Early Start’ to Late Mornings

Some changes announced at CNN and HLN this morning.

First, Kyra Phillips, who has been an anchor with CNN since 1999, is leaving the network and moving a few floors away at CNN Center, to HLN where she will anchor a new daytime program launching later this summer.

Also, Ashleigh Banfield is moving off “Early Start” and will anchor her own hour later in the morning in Phillips’ previous CNN timeslot of 11amET. John Berman, who left ABC News for CNN, will now co-anchor “Early Start” with Zoraida Sambolin as well as contribute to other CNN programs and to CNN.com.

All the changes take effect in a few weeks.

Recently, Phillips had been anchoring daytime hours on HLN and Banfield has been anchoring daytime hours on CNN, so the moves are not unexpected.

HLN executive Scot Safon says, Phillips’ program “will highlight her strengths as a journalist as well as her insights and observations on the news and the people at the center of the stories.”

Memos from Safon and CNN EVP Ken Jautz, after the jump…

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CNN Cancels ‘John King USA’

CNN is canceling its 6 PM program “John King USA,” and replacing it with an extra hour of “The Situation Room.” John King will become CNN’s lead national campaign correspondent for the remainder of the election cycle, though that is clearly not as plum a gig as having an hour-long nightly program.

In a memo to CNN staff obtained by TVNewser, CNN/U.S. chief Ken Jautz explained the move:

“John will be providing reports for SitRoom, AC360 and other programs and CNN platforms. This is John’s seventh presidential campaign, fourth with CNN, and making him available across our programming lineup allows us to better tap his skills and experience, especially on the ground reporting in major battleground states and among critical voting blocs.”

Joe Johns and Suzanne Kelly

CNN also made some other changes in its Washington bureau, naming Joe Johns crime and justice correspondent, and Suzanne Kelly intelligence correspondent.

The New York TimesBrian Stelter first reported the King news.

“JK USA” launched in March 2010, leading up to the midterm elections. Originally at 7 PM, it moved to 6 PM when Erin Burnett joined the network. The program–which focused heavily on politics–failed to catch on with viewers, although it saw a slight uptick during the heat of the current Presidential campaign.

Jautz’s full memo to staff is below.

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Ken Jautz’s CNN Mission: ‘Differentiate Ourselves in Cable Television’

Marketwatch.com’s Jon Friedman had lunch recently with CNN/U.S. EVP Ken Jautz, now 18 months into his tenure at the top of the cable news network. “He has one of the most delicate balancing acts in all of the media,” Friedman writes, “by serving his corporate bosses while leading his thousands of CNN network and online troops.” The takeaway on some of CNN’s biggest names:

  • Anderson Cooper, CNN’s biggest star, has made progress in establishing himself as a global presence on news stories and is unruffled by media naysayers who wonder why he doesn’t get higher ratings, considering how high profile he is. Jautz said he is “pleased” with Cooper’s growth.
  • Erin Burnett, who left CNBC last year to take over a CNN news show at 7 p.m., is gaining traction as a tough interviewer. “She’s doing great,” he said.

(h/t ICN)

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