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2 items from 2015

Marlene Sanders, a Pioneering Woman in TV News, Dies at 84

15 July 2015 3:47 PM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Marlene Sanders, a trailblazer for women in TV journalism as an on-air talent and executive, died Tuesday of cancer at a hospice in Manhattan.She was 84.

In 1976, Sanders was one of the first women to reach the upper echelons of management when ABC made her VP and director of documentaries. Before that, in 1966, she was one of the first network newswomen to report from the field in Vietnam, the New York Times reported.

Her on-air work was also path-breaking. In 1964, Sanders substituted as ABC’s weekend news anchor for Ron Cochran, who was sidelined with a throat ailment. Later she took over for Sam Donaldson as anchor of ABC’s weekend news for three months in 1971.

Sanders was born in in Cleveland. After attending Ohio State University for a year, she tried her hand at acting, eventually finding work as an assistant on a twice-daily news broadcast and later becoming »

- Reece Ristau

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AFI Docs: The Birth of Punditry

18 June 2015 10:47 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Washington — The AFI Docs Festival, the annual showcase of nonfiction film, opened with a title that is a perfect fit for this politics-and-media-obsessed town: “Best of Enemies.”

The documentary, from Morgan Neville and Robert Gordon, recounts the backstory of the infamous ABC News debates that pitted intellectual heavyweights Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley against each other during the coverage of the 1968 Democratic and Republican conventions. Rather than a genteel disagreement of ideas, it turned into a bitter feud that had Vidal calling his counterpart a crypto-fascist, and Buckley returning by calling his nemesis a “queer.”

The project is not a walk down memory lane, but instead traces the lineage of today’s cable news shoutfests and punditry overdrive to that moment.

“We came upon the footage, and the footage, though 40 years old, spoke very much to the present moment,” Morgan said after the opening-night screening on Wednesday at Newseum, »

- Ted Johnson

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2015 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2003

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