'The Big News' was big news in broadcast world. The L.A. TV show, billed as the first 45-minute newscast in the nation, debuted in 1961. After it expanded to 60 minutes, executives from other cities visited to see how to set up a one-hour newscast. An apt title for the typical TV newscast of the 1950s might have been: "Inaction News!'' There simply wasn't much of it on the tube back in those days. In Southern California, the nightly fare on KNXT-TV (Channel 2) in 1959 consisted of a network newscast from 7:15 to 7:30, and two local newscasts from 7 to 7:15 and 11 to 11:15. Just 30 minutes of local news nightly, two-thirds of which was devoted to sports and weather. TV anchors would sometimes introduce stories by holding up the morning's newspaper headlines. So there was some astonishment in 1961 when KNXT (now CBS2) introduced "The Big News," billed as the first 45-minute newscast in the nation.
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