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4 items from 2004

Norville surrenders MSNBC talk show

17 December 2004 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

NEW YORK -- After a year of disappointing ratings, TV news veteran Deborah Norville is calling it quits on her primetime MSNBC talk show. In a letter to MSNBC employees Friday, network chief Rick Kaplan said Norville would be leaving her hourlong program sometime in mid-January. That's when a new show will debut, but MSNBC has declined to discuss specifics. "We're looking forward to developing new, compelling programming for the 9 p.m. time period," Kaplan said. The move was widely expected. Deborah Norville Tonight wasn't able to compete at 9 p.m., regularly coming in third against Fox News Channel's Hannity & Colmes and CNN's Larry King Live. But in a letter released Friday, Norville said she couldn't do the syndicated daily Inside Edition and the MSNBC show. "This decision comes down to one issue: time," she said. "With my pre-existing commitments to King World's 'Inside Edition' and to my husband and three children, there simply are not enough hours in the day to do justice to my colleagues at MSNBC and the program we aspire to do." »

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Syndication ratings: Court shows up, others down

18 August 2004 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Syndicated shows were in the doldrums for the week ended Aug. 8 as most were in repeats and fewer viewers were watching television from the previous frame. Court shows exhibited some improvement during the week, which saw HUT (households using television) levels drop by an average of 387,000 households from the previous week, according to Nielsen Media Research figures. Judge Judy averaged a 4.5 household rating, up 7% week-to-week, while Judge Joe Brown was flat at a 3.4. Divorce Court (2.6) was up 4%, Judge Mathis (2.4) was up 9%, and People's Court (2.4) was flat. The entertainment magazine strips also saw some improvement week-to-week, with Entertainment Tonight posting a 4.5, up 5%. Inside Edition was up 3% to a 3.2, Extra was up 5% to a 2.2, and Access Hollywood fell 5% to a 2.1. Celebrity Justice was down 17% to a 1.0. »

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'Inside' job for ex-anchorman Moret

8 July 2004 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Former CNN anchor Jim Moret has joined the syndicated newsmagazine Inside Edition as a senior correspondent. Moret, who will be based in the newsmagazine's Los Angeles bureau, spent nearly a decade at CNN, where he served as co-anchor of Showbiz Today and The World Today and anchor of NewsNight. While at the cable news network, Moret anchored many breaking news stories and live events, including the 2000 terrorist bombing of the USS Cole and the 2000 Democratic National Convention. He also was CNN's chief anchor for coverage of the O.J. Simpson criminal trial in 1995 and served as anchor and analyst for Simpson's civil trial in 1996-97. "Jim brings a wealth of experience covering breaking-news events, in-depth reporting of ongoing stories and the deft touch for the celebrity and show business stories our audience has come to expect," said Charles Lachman, executive producer of Inside Edition, which is produced and distributed by King World. After leaving CNN in 2001, Moret hosted a series of ABC specials and co-hosted the network's Academy Awards preshow three times. He also has served as guest anchor on KTLA's Morning News in Los Angeles and on WNYW's Good Day New York. Moret joins Inside Edition as the newsmagazine, anchored by Deborah Norville, prepares to enter its 17th season. »

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MSNBC, Norville eye young crowd

8 January 2004 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

NEW YORK -- MSNBC believes that its hiring of Inside Edition anchor Deborah Norville will fill a huge void in its primetime schedule by giving it a Larry King-type interview show that will try to reach a younger audience. Norville, who will join MSNBC in her 9 p.m. slot Jan. 21, will remain with the King World-syndicated strip for the remaining 18 months of her contract, through the 2004-05 season. MSNBC announced the addition Wednesday, though Norville's hiring had been an open secret within the industry for the past month (HR 1/2). Skeptics wonder whether Norville could compete head-to-head in the time slot with Larry King Live for bookings. But MSNBC president Erik Sorenson pointed to King's older-skewing audience -- more than 60% are older than 55 -- and said Norville will try to book newsmakers and celebrities who appeal to younger audiences. He said the show will focus on the stories of the day across a broad spectrum of personalities. »

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