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TVBIZWIRE
May 5, 2016
9:16 am
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OWN Shocker: Top Executive, Longtime Oprah Confidante, Exits the Network (NY Post, TVWeek)

Staffers at Oprah Winfrey’s OWN network were reportedly blindsided by the news Wednesday that longtime Winfrey confidante and OWN Co-President Sheri Salata is leaving the network.

The New York Post’s Page Six reports that Salata plans to launch her own company, which is described as a “brand innovation agency and content/story platform.”

“A company insider said there was ‘an audible gasp’ after Winfrey announced the move in a companywide meeting at the LA headquarters this week,” the story reports. “We’re told the sudden move left staffers’ heads spinning, and workers began boxing up Salata’s office as soon as the veteran broadcaster and media mogul broke the meeting up.”

Salata has been working with Winfrey for 21 years, including a run as executive producer of “The Oprah Winfrey Show” and a role as president of Winfrey’s Harpo Studios. OWN and the Oprah Media Group have reportedly signed on as clients with Salata’s new firm.

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TVBIZWIRE
May 5, 2016
8:37 am
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Why Leonard Nimoy and William Shatner Stopped Talking to One Another Years Before Nimoy’s Death (About Entertainment)

When “Star Trek” icon Leonard Nimoy died a little more than a year ago, he and William Shatner hadn’t spoken in years, and new details reveal what may have been the cause of their falling-out.

“On the anniversary of Nimoy’s death, Shatner released ‘Leonard: My Fifty-Year Friendship with a Remarkable Man,'” About Entertainment notes. “The book, co-written with David Fisher, details Nimoy’s life and Shatner’s relationship with Nimoy. In the book, he describes how they met, their struggling relationship, and the bonds they shared. But in the end, it also describes how Nimoy refused to speak to Shatner in the final years of his life.”

The report focuses on a Shatner interview about five years ago with The Daily Mail.

“In 2011, Shatner released a documentary called ‘The Captains,’ where he interviewed actors like Kate Mulgrew and Avery Brooks who played starship captains on the ‘Star Trek’ series,” the story reports. “Apparently, Shatner had asked Nimoy to make an appearance in the documentary. Nimoy refused. Despite that, Shatner’s cameraman filmed Nimoy secretly during a convention appearance to include as footage without Nimoy’s permission. There was never a final argument or blowout over it, but that seemed to have been the last straw. They never spoke again.”

leonard my fifty-year friendship-william shatner

TVBIZWIRE
May 5, 2016
7:29 am
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NBC Unveils Plans for ‘Today’ Show’s Natalie Morales (USA Today)

After news broke this week that “Today” show regular Natalie Morales might be leaving the program, NBC confirmed its plans for the morning veteran. Morales’ role will indeed be changing, but it turns out she will still be a part of “Today.”

USA Today reports that Morales, who joined “Today” in 2006, is moving to Los Angeles, where she will become “Today’s” West Coast anchor and will add hosting duties on NBCUniversal’s “Access Hollywood” and “Access Hollywood Live.” Senior VP Noah Oppenheim, the NBC exec in charge of “Today,” detailed plans Wednesday in an email to the show’s staff.

The move comes as “Access” anchor Billy Bush is expected to join “Today.”

In the email, Oppenheim wrote: “As you all know, Natalie has already been spending a lot of time in California, reporting live from special events like the Oscars, Golden Globes and Latin American Music Awards, conducting celebrity interviews and set visits, and spearheading two big series spotlighting women who are leaders in Silicon Valley and Hollywood.  With our show’s increasing focus on West Coast stories, it became clear to me that having a permanent anchor presence in L.A. would be of enormous value.”

Morales, 43, will also continue to play “a prominent role” on “Dateline NBC,” the email notes.

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TVBIZWIRE
May 5, 2016
6:44 am
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This May Be the Best One Yet: Gwen Stefani Joins James Corden for ‘Carpool Karaoke,’ With a Surprise Appearance by Two of the Biggest Stars in Hollywood — Watch It Now (CBS)

CBS late-night host James Corden continues to score with the popular “Carpool Karaoke” segments from “The Late Late Show with James Corden.” In the latest installment he “carpools” with Gwen Stefani, and they’re joined midway through the segment by two big surprise guest.

Check it out …

TVBIZWIRE
May 5, 2016
6:11 am
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Who the Bookies Think Will Win a Trump vs. Clinton Showdown (NY Post)

Bookies have laid odds on who will win the presidential election, even though betting on it is illegal in the U.S. The New York Post reports that the online bookmaker Ladbrokes has Hillary Clinton as the 4-11 favorite, meaning a bet of $11 would win $4.

Donald Trump is a 9-4 underdog.

The odds-on favorite to be Trump’s running mate is John Kasich, who ended his presidential bid Wednesday. Kasich is listed at 4-1, a little ahead of Chris Christie at 6-1.

On the Democratic side, the oddsmakers are leaning toward HUD Secretary Julian Castro at 9-4 as Clinton’s running mate, with both Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren at 6-1.

TVBIZWIRE
May 4, 2016
12:11 pm
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Fixture on NBC’s ‘Today’ Show May Be Headed Out (NY Post)

One of the regulars on NBC’s morning program “Today” is reportedly weighing options, including a spot on “Access Hollywood.” The New York Post reports that Natalie Morales, whose contract expires in October, appears poised to make a move.

Morales anchors news segments on “Today” and co-hosts its third hour. The report quotes a source saying, “Natalie is moving to California,” which would suggest that a move to “Access” is a done deal.

“If that happens, NBC would essentially be swapping current ‘Access Hollywood’ host Billy Bush for Morales,” the report notes. “Bush is expected to join ‘Today’ as a co-host in its third hour at 9 a.m. ahead of the Summer Olympics.”

The report notes that reps for Morales have also had early talks with ABC about a possible move to “Good Morning America.”

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TVBIZWIRE
May 4, 2016
11:27 am
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Shocking Revelation by Charles Manson Disciple Who Has Been Approved for Parole (NY Post)

One of the Manson Family killers was approved for parole even after she made the shocking revelation during her April 14 parole hearing that she would have killed babies when she was participating in the group’s murder spree back in 1969.

The New York Post reports that Leslie Van Houten, now 66 years old, went into detail about her role in the murders of Leno and Rosemary LaBianca during her seven-hour parole hearing. She was 19 at the time of the killings.

Presiding Commissioner Ali Zarrinnam reportedly asked Van Houten: “You would have done anything at this point, right? If there were babies in the home, would you have killed babies, newborns, toddlers?”

Referring to Charles Manson, Van Houten said: “I think I would have if he’d have said.”

The Post adds: “The gray-haired femme fatale never recanted or took responsibility for her shocking statement, saying instead that she had ‘surrendered completely, morally, ethically’ to Manson.”

Governor Jerry Brown will make the final decision in the next few months as to whether Van Houten is released from prison.

TVBIZWIRE
May 4, 2016
11:09 am
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ABC’s ‘Live! with Kelly and Michael’ Names First Guest Host for Post-Strahan Spot (TVWeek)

The first guest host has been named for the “tryout” spot opposite Kelly Ripa after Michael Strahan exits ABC’s daytime show “Live! with Kelly and Michael,” but it seems unlikely that the new guy will be trying out for the job.

The show announced that Jimmy Kimmel, who has a regular gig at the other end of the schedule with his ABC late-night show “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” will fill in Monday, May 16. Kimmel’s appearance follows the Strahan sendoff scheduled for Friday, May 13.

The show did not announce how long Kimmel will be sitting in. He has been a frequent guest host on the show in the past.

Strahan will move full time to ABC’s “Good Morning America” in the fall.

jimmy kimmel live abc

TVBIZWIRE
May 4, 2016
10:44 am
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Here’s What the TV Special Featuring Tracy Morgan, Emma Watson, Danny Trejo and Ellie Kemper Is About — and Who Else Will Be on the Program (TVWeek)

A gathering of stars from TV, movies, comedy, music and sports will be assembled for a special that will air May 26 on NBC. The occasion is Red Nose Day, a charity event run by Comic Relief to benefit children in need.

Among the celebrities on tap for NBC’s second annual “Red Nose Day Special” are Ellen DeGeneres, Jack Black, Paul Rudd, Julianne Moore, Liam Neeson, Sarah Silverman, Tracy Morgan, Key & Peele, Anna Kendrick, Seth Rogen, Zac Efron and Ellie Kemper.

The comedy and music special will be hosted by Craig Ferguson.

Please click here for the rest of the celebrity lineup and additional details in the release from NBC.

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TVBIZWIRE
May 4, 2016
10:21 am
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Look Who’s Going to Star in New Talk Show From Dr. Phil (THR)

A new talk show is in the works from Stage 29 Productions, the banner run by Dr. Phil and his son Jay McGraw, with entrepreneur and former model Amber Rose set to star. The Hollywood Reporter’s Live Feed reports that the weekly talk show has landed at VH1.

The show is set to debut this summer.

“The weekly series will feature Rose conducting candid interviews with celebrity friends and leading what is billed as provocative, entertaining and humorous conversations with guests on topics including pop culture, motherhood, relationships, friendships, race and entrepreneurship,” THR reports.

Amber Rose (OWN interview)Amber Rose (OWN interview)

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