A CBS comedy from Emmy-winning writer and producer David E. Kelley is in negotiations with Robin Williams to lure the actor back to television for the first time in three decades, reports our good friend James Hibberd at EW.com's Inside TV blog.
The series is a half-hour comedy set in the advertising world, about a father/daughter workplace, the story notes. Williams would star and Kelley would write and produce with 20th Century Fox Television.
Williams' last regular TV role was on the 1978-82 hit "Mork & Mindy," which made him a household name, the story says.
Sarah Palin's "Facebook outburst complaining about Fox [News] canceling her appearance at the Republic National Convention [previously reported] reveals something deeper about Palin’s often rocky relationship with the network. Palin's contract is up in January, and according to sources, Fox News executives are now weighing what kind of deal they would sign, if they sign one at all."
That's what Gabriel Sherman writes in New York magazine.
Sherman continues, "Palin earns roughly $1 million per year from Fox, making her the highest paid contributor at the network. Fox executives have been disappointed with her ratings; Palin has been disappointed by Fox's decision to not give her top billing on bookings. According to sources, the relationship at times has gotten so bad that much communication has been conducted via Palin’s husband Todd. One thing is clear: It's risky for her to push the envelope too far. Fox has been a central pillar of Palin’s national reach since quitting the governorship, and without the network's platform, it's unclear how she could maintain even her current, much-diminished level of visibility."more »
'One Man's Vulgarity Is Another Man's Lyric': Clint Eastwood Attacks Obama in No Uncertain Terms in Rambling Monologue at the Republican Convention. Love It or Hate It, It Was Certainly Unconventional. If You Missed It We Have the Video
"It doesn't matter what stripe your politics are, or whether you thought last night was a victory or disaster, Clint Eastwood stole the night. He stole it with the expertise and facility of a veteran actor who knew exactly what he was doing - stealing a scene, and stealing it with utter conviction."
So writes our good friend Verne Gay, the veteran TV columnist at Newsday, referring to Eastwood's speech at the Republican National Convention on Thursday night, Aug. 30, 2012.
Gay continues, "There is but one thing anyone will remember from this week - one thing and one thing only: The sight of Dirty Harry addressing an empty chair. Let the big minds address whether this remarkable TV moment was good or bad for the Republican ticket and they already have: Bob Schieffer last night said it was a political disaster, shifting attention from the candidate to a loopy actor addressing an empty chair. His colleague Norah O'Donnell said this morning that it was the 'not good, the bad and the very ugly.' "
Gay adds, "Political conventions are TV shows, only TV shows, and the one from Tampa last night starred a silver-maned screen icon named Clint Eastwood who drifted wildly off-script, addressed an empty chair, put words in the mouth of an invisible “president” that were vaguely - no, very distinctly - scatological, rambled for seven minutes, drove event organizers to drink....and in the process .totally, irrevocably heisted the entire week."
For the TV viewer, Gay notes that "[W]e got Clint and it was electrifying - a glorious, bizarre, fun, wild, weird, kooky, incendiary moment that threatened to throw the entire convention into a complete tailspin - and just before the nominee spoke. Now THAT'S entertainment, friends."
As they say, let's go to the video,from the PBS NewsHour:more »
"After five years of trying to sell ads on television using the automated buying system that works so well for its signature search ads, Google has finally given up," reports Robert Hof at Forbes.com.
The article continues, "The shutdown is clearly a disappointment for Google, yet another sign that its math-driven advertising systems don’t readily translate to traditional advertising. Back in 2009, the company shut down radio and print ad efforts for lack of interest."
Hof adds, "In a blog post this afternoon [Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012] from Shishir Mehrotra, VP of YouTube and video, the ad giant said it will shunt the group’s staff to other projects: 'Video is increasingly going digital and users are now watching across numerous devices. So we’ve made the hard decision to close our TV Ads product over the next few months and move the team to other areas at Google. We’ll be doubling down on video solutions for our clients (like YouTube, AdWords for Video, and ad serving tools for web video publishers). We also see opportunities to help users access web content on their TV screens, through products like Google TV.' "more »
TVWeek has published an abbreviated TVBizWire/E-Daily e-newsletter this morning. We will also publish our Daily Viral Video e-newsletter today, but not a separate afternoon E-Daily.
We're off Monday, Memorial Day, and will return will all our products on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2012.
Meanwhile, if news breaks, we'll send out a TVWeek Extra Alert.
From our family to your family we wish you a safe and fun Labor Day holiday.more »
More Sad News About Robin Roberts: Her Mom Dies. The GMA Co-Anchor, Who Is On Medical Leave Herself, Made It To Her Mom's Bedside Just Before Her Mom Passed
"These are tough days for Robin Roberts," reports E! Online. "The 'Good Morning America' anchor's mother, Lucimarian Tolliver Roberts, died Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012, at the age of 88, co-anchor George Stephanopoulos announced on the show Friday."
The story continues, "The sad news follows Roberts' announcement that she will be taking a medical leave to undergo a bone-marrow transplant after being diagnosed earlier this year with myelodysplastic syndrome, a disease of the blood and bone marrow."
The story adds, "The 51-year-old Roberts had originally planned to start her leave after today's show but announced Thursday that she'd begin it a day early so she could fly home to Mississippi to be with her ailing mother. On the show Friday, Stephanopoulos said that Robin 'wanted to get home a little early to say goodbye to her mom. She made it home just in time.' "
The story adds,
ABC is in business with an alum of NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” on a multicamera comedy project, Deadline.com reports. The Alphabet Network has given a put pilot commitment to “The Housewives,” a female-centric effort from ex-“SNL”-er Casey Wilson along with June Diane Raphael, Will Gluck and Sony Pictures TV, the story reports.
The report notes: “Written and executive produced by Wilson and Raphael, ‘The Housewives’ is about three female friends in 1954. Raphael is in negotiations to play one of the three leads in the project, produced by Sony TV and Gluck’s studio-based TV production company Olive Bridge Entertainment. Richard Schwartz co-executive produces.”
It’s the second major sale of the season for Gluck’s company, the report adds, following the 22-episode order the company received from NBC for a Michael J. Fox sitcom.
“’The Housewives’ reunites the auspices behind last year’s single-camera comedy project ‘Walk Of Shame,’ which also was set up at ABC through Sony TV and Gluck’s company, with Wilson and Raphael writing,” the story adds. “Wilson has a pre-existing relationship with ABC and Sony TV -- she co-stars on the ABC/Sony comedy ‘Happy Endings.’”more »
ABC’s “Good Morning America” continues to assert its newfound dominance over its NBC rival “Today,” B&C reports.
Nielsen figures show that “GMA” beat “Today” by more than 520,000 total viewers for the week of Aug. 20, the story reports. It was “GMA’s” second-highest margin of victory in the head-to-head battle since the ABC show first topped “Today” back in April, the report notes.
“’Good Morning America’ has now won seven of the past nine weeks, with the only two wins by ‘Today’ because of NBC's Olympics coverage,” the story reports. “’GMA’ also outdrew ‘Today’ on all five days, extending its streak to nine straight days.”
“Today” did post a narrow win for the week in the key demo of adults 25-54, topping “GMA” by 5,000 viewers, the story notes.more »
A hip-hop mogul who has been the longtime manager of 50 Cent, Diddy, Ja Rule and Mariah Carey was found dead today in New York in an apparent suicide, TMZ.com reports. Chris Lighty died from what is being reported as a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, according to authorities.
“According to law enforcement, 44-year-old Lighty's body was found by police around 11:30 a.m. in the backyard of his Bronx apartment,” the story reports. “Lighty was pronounced dead on the scene, where a semi-automatic firearm was recovered.”
The story cites sources close to Lighty saying he had been arguing with his ex-wife shortly before shooting himself.
The report notes: “We're told the couple got divorced last year and Lighty hadn't been the same since.”
The case is under investigation as a possible suicide.
Lighty founded the record label and multimedia entertainment conglomerate Violator.more »
For the two nights of coverage of the Republican National Convention so far, Fox News Channel has been burying the competition in the ratings, Deadline.com reports.
The cable news channel averaged 7.70 million total viewers Wednesday night in the 10 p.m. (ET) hour, when Condoleezza Rice and Paul Ryan addressed the convention. In the key news demo of viewers 25-54 the figure was 2.06 million. Both numbers were up from the same hour on Tuesday -- up 12% in total viewers and up 23% in the demo.
The best any of the broadcasters could manage was NBC with 4.14 million total viewers and 1.49 million in the news demo for the 10 p.m.-11:05 p.m. coverage.
ABC settled for 2.85 million total viewers and 993,694 in 25-54 from 10-11:07 p.m., with CBS delivering 2.55 million total and 402,370 in the demo for the same period.
The other major cable news channels fell in behind the broadcasters. MSNBC settled for 1.44 million total viewers to 1.34 million for CNN. Between the two, CNN did win the 25-54 demo: CNN had 451.370 to 402,044 for MSNBC.
“In overall 8-11 PM ET prime-time coverage, FNC did better than CNN and MSNBC put together,” the story reports. “The News Corp.-owned network had 5.84 million total viewers compared to the 1.29 MSNBC had and the 1.11 million CNN drew. Among adults 25-54, FNC had 1.42 million while MSNBC had 366,743 and CNN had 341,758.”
All three cable news channels were down in total viewers Wednesday from the equivalent night of the 2008 GOP Convention -- some more than others. Fox News was down 9%, MSNBC fell 40% and CNN was off by a whopping 73% for the 8-11 p.m. period, compared with Sept. 3, 2008.more »