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2 items from 2014

Billy Kimball to Step Down from Fusion as Chief Programming Officer

11 September 2014 10:46 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Billy Kimball is leaving startup news-and-satire cable network Fusion and will be replaced as chief programming officer by Wade Beckett, a former showrunner of Espn’s SportsNation” and former executive at NBCUniversal’s G4.

“Throughout his tenure, Billy has worked tirelessly to constantly improve our existing shows, nurture our talent, and develop exciting new projects, many of which are now reaching the pilot phase,” said Fusion CEO Isaac Lee in a memo to staffers. “As you all know, Billy is a brilliant producer and we hope to continue working with him on a number of projects in the future.”

Beckett is slated to join Fusion in October.

Kimball is one of the architects of an iconoclastic lineup that mixes hard-news analysis from veterans like Jorge Ramos with youth-skewing satirical programs such as “No, You Shut Up” that featured a talking hot dog and other anthropomorphic creatures holding forth on the »

- Brian Steinberg

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To Cover State of the Union, Fusion Taps Talking Animals and A Chatty Hot Dog

27 January 2014 4:30 AM, PST | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

When President Obama delivers his State of the Union address Tuesday evening, NBC News will trot out Brian Williams to anchor its coverage. Fox News Channel will rely on Bret Baier. PBS will feature Judy Woodruff and Gwen Ifill. But Fusion, the upstart news-and-lifestyle cable outlet, will make use of two bickering crabs and a talking hot dog.

In a maneuver sure to raise eyebrows, Fusion, a joint venture of Univision and ABC News that launched in October, will veer from the traditional when offering coverage of the President’s annual agenda-setting speech. Rather than give the spotlight to Jorge Ramos or Leon Krauze, two veteran news anchors who occupy important slots in its primetime schedule, Fusion will instead count on the talents of a group of puppets, and the comedic minds who fill their mouths with speech.

The cast of Fusion’s 9:30 p.m. satirical program includes Yerd Nerp, »

- Brian Steinberg

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2014 | 2012 | 2010

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