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KTLA Reporter: Kingsley Smith’s Departure Part of ‘Ill-Advised Dismantling’ of KTTV

KTTV_logoKTLA reporter Sam Rubin takes to Facebook to offer his version of the events that led to KTTV news director Kingsley Smith‘s resignation from the Los Angeles Fox O&O. Rubin, who covers media and entertainment for Tribune’s CW affiliate in LA, writes that “a smarter and stronger executive would have stood up to those giving the orders” as KTTV “went from feeling fun and brash, to heartless and cold”:

The real reason that Smith lost his job is that for the past two years or so he has been a willing and active participant is the ill-advised dismantling of a once popular and important news gathering organization. So after Smith followed orders, fired a ton of people at Fox 11; including very talented and popular on-air types like Mark Thompson and Dorothy Lucey; the ratings are a disaster, the news gathering abilities are destroyed; and guess who gets the blame …. the sap who followed the orders, coming from higher-ups in New York incidentally, to cut KTTV to beyond the bone.

What really matters here, and this is where “executives” always make the biggest mistake, is that television news in 2013 is a personality business. There is simply nothing more important than “feel,” how a show sincerely feels to those who watch it.  Read more

After 20 Years at Fox, Kingsley Smith Resigns From KTTV

kttv set_304x200After two years as KTTV news director, Kingsley Smith is stepping down from the Los Angeles Fox O&O.

“After 20 years with Fox Television Stations, Kingsley Smith has resigned from employment with the company and will be pursuing other opportunities,” KTTV vice president and general manager Kevin Hale said in a statement.

Smith joined KTTV in 2011. He has also worked as news director for Fox-owned WTXF in Philadelphia and KTVI in St. Louis, which was a Fox O&O at the time he was there. Earlier in his career, he spent 15 years at KDFW in Dallas, where he worked his way up from producer to executive producer to assistant news director.

A station spokesperson tells TVSpy that a search is underway for Smith’s replacement. In the interim period, assistant news director Tom Searson will be acting news director.

CNN Morning Anchor Surprises Her Former Anchor Team

pereira_KTLAFormer KTLA anchor and current CNN “New Day” anchor Michaela Pereira surprised her former anchor buddies on the set of the CW affiliate’s morning show.

Pereira walked into Sam Rubin‘s single and plopped down a box of cookies from Levain Bakery on New York’s Upper West Side.

The team talked about Pereira’s new job at CNN in New York, how she gets recognized in New York by vacationing Angelenos and how touching down in Los Angeles made her emotional, “we’re coming low over Inglewood and I suddenly was recognizing streets and everything and I found myself getting choked up.” Watch the video after the jump. Read more

Michelle Valles Debuts on KNBC’s ‘Today in LA’

michelle valles knbcMichelle Valles took over as the new co-anchor of “Today in LA” this morning, just one day after Alycia Lane was shown the door at the NBC owned station in Los Angeles.

The newscast made no acknowledgement of the “Today in LA” talent shuffle. Michael Brownlee, who has co-anchored the newscast alongside Lane for more than a year, was off this morning. Whit Johnson, KNBC’s noon anchor, filled in for him. Valles’ online bio has been updated to reflect her new role, while Lane’s has been stripped from the KNBC website.

In addition to Lane, KNBC morning traffic reporter Sean Murphy parted ways with the station a as a result of the shuffle. On today’s newscast, KNBC chopper reporter and photographer Will Kohlschreiber handled traffic reports from the station’s chopper.

TVSpy hears that the executive producer of KNBC’s morning newscast, Amy Mattison, was also let go Wednesday. A KNBC spokesperson declined to comment.

Telemundo Los Angeles Adds Estafania Iglesias as Weather and Traffic Reporter

iglesias_telemundo_croppedEstafania Iglesias has joined Telemundo Los Angeles/KVEA as morning weather and traffic reporter.

She joins anchors Dunia Elvir and Julio Vaqueiro on the expanded Noticiero Telemundo 52, Buenos Dias Los Angeles. The show runs from 5:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. Monday to Friday.

“Estefania brings a fresh and fun approach to the traffic and weather segments, which are very important to our community,” Celia Chavez, president and general manager of Telemundo 52/KVEA said in a statement. “She’s a great addition to the newscast team.”

Iglesias started her career as a host for America TV in Argentina. She has also worked at E! Entertainment Latin America. Most recently she was a weather and entertainment reporter for KRCA in Los Angeles.

KNBC Shakes Up Morning Newscast: Alycia Lane Out, Michelle Valles In

alycia lane_knbc First on TVSpy: KNBC, the NBC owned station in Los Angeles, is shaking up its morning newscast. Co-anchor Alycia Lane and traffic reporter Sean Murphy are out, a KNBC spokesperson confirms to TVSpy.

“Alycia Lane and Sean Murphy’s last day was today, October 16. We are grateful for the contributions they have both made to NBC4 and wish them the best in their future endeavors,” a station spokesperson told TVSpy.

Both Murphy and Lane joined KNBC after working at KYW, the CBS owned station in Philadelphia. Lane joined KNBC in 2009 and Murphy made the move in 2010.

During her five years in Philadelphia, Lane landed in the headlines for a highly-publicized tryst with co-anchor Larry Mendte and for her involvement in an altercation with a female New York City police officer. KYW released her from her contract in 2008, saying “it would be impossible for Alycia to continue to report the news as she, herself, has become the focus of so many news stories.”

She subsequently sued CBS and Mendte for defamation. Both cases were eventually dismissed.

Going forward, Michelle Valles will co-anchor the morning newscast with Michael Brownlee. Valles is currently KNBC’s weekend morning co-anchor.

Julio Vaqueiro Joins Telemundo Los Angeles

julio vaquieroJulio Vaqueiro has been named morning co-anchor at Telemundo Los Angeles. Vaqueiro will anchor alongside Dunia Elvir beginning October 1.

“Vaqueiro brings a depth of experience from his work covering international news. He will be an integral part of ‘Buenos Dias Los Angeles’ providing great news coverage to our Latino community,” Telemundo Los Angeles president and general manager Celia Chavez said in a statement.

Vaqueiro’s hire is timed with the expansion of the morning newscast, which will add an additional hour beginning next week. More from Telemundo Los Angeles after the jump. Read more

WATCH: Loud Talker Adds Background Drama to KTLA Live Shot

KTLA_videobombA woman who started in the background of  KTLA reporter Kareen Wynter‘s live shot loud talking on her cellphone, ended the report by being walked out of the shot by Sheriff’s Deputies when she turned up the volume.

The Los Angeles CW affiliate featured the drama on its facebook page writing, “A screaming woman had to be escorted away from outside the Michael Jackson wrongful death trial in downtown Los Angeles.”

Wynter said she was prepared for the ruckus after seeing the woman disrupt live shots of other reporters. The station didn’t say what happened to the woman after the brouhaha. Watch the video after the jump. Read more

KABC Passes 600,000 Facebook Likes

KABC LOGO_304X200KABC has surpassed 600,000 Facebook likes, making it the most-liked Facebook page among all local stations in the U.S., according to the Los Angeles ABC O&O.

“The ABC7 Facebook fans continue to see our page as an important destination for news, information, discussion and sometimes a little fun,” KABC vice president and news director Cheryl Fair said in a statement. “It is also a vital and growing source of direct communication between ABC7 and our viewers.”

With more than 145,000 followers, KABC also says they are the leader of local stations on Twitter.  General manager Arnold J. Kleiner said social media “is a priority for us as we look to the future of local television.”

“We are all connected in social media more than ever and as the most watched television station in Southern California we want to serve our viewers just as well in the social space as we do on television,” he said.

Meteorologist Crystal Egger Joins KNBC

Crystal Egger is joining KNBC, the NBC owned station in Los Angeles, as the meteorologist for the morning newscast.

“Crystal’s skills and in-depth knowledge will be a great addition to our team, and will deliver to our viewers the weather information they need to start their days,” KNBC vice president of news Todd Mokhtari said in a statement.

Egger joins KNBC from The Weather Channel, where she was a meteorologist for the network’s primetime programming. She has previously worked at KDVR in Denver, KIFI in Idaho Falls and Cable News 16 in San Diego.

More from KNBC after the jump. Read more

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