Sep 17, 2014
2:47 pm

CBS Moves to Spur Change in Ratings Standard (Variety)

CBS would like the TV business to get on with transitioning to a new standard ratings metric, and Variety reports that the network announced today what it plans to do about it.

“The Eye said Wednesday it will add projected Live Plus 7 numbers to its daily overnight ratings reports as of next week, which marks the official start of the 2014-15 season and the rollout of the bulk of CBS’ fall slate,” the story reports. “The move is meant to be a statement to the TV biz and to advertisers that L7 ratings (and their C7 commercial ratings counterpart) should be seen as the new normal, given the vast growth of time-shifted viewing.”

Live Plus 7 takes into account DVR and VOD views within seven days of a program’s premiere on the linear channel. “For a host of complicated reasons, L7 numbers do not include most streaming activity other than live streaming of network programming done on a smartphone or tablet within the confines of the viewer’s home,” the report notes.

Fox has also moved in the same direction, and has been providing Live Plus 3 and Live Plus 7 projections for much of its programming for the past year.

Said CBS head man Leslie Moonves: “L7 and C7 are the metrics that more accurately account for how viewers watch our shows and how we get paid for our programming — both in advertising and content licensing. C7 deals were a significant part of our upfront negotiations this year, and we are doing more and more C7 deals all of the time. As new technologies continue to improve audience measurement across all platforms, these more precise metrics are becoming the industry standard, benefiting advertisers and content providers alike.”

Variety adds: “David Poltrack, CBS Corp.’s chief research officer, compared evaluating a show’s performance on overnight numbers to ‘reporting the results of a baseball game after the fifth inning.’”


Sep 17, 2014
2:46 pm

‘SNL’ Alum Returns to the Show as Host (EW)

A “Saturday Night Live” veteran who spent eight years on the NBC late-night sketch comedy show will be back on familiar ground when he returns next month as a guest host.’s Inside TV reports that Bill Hader will host the Oct. 11 installment of “SNL,” which will feature Hozier as the musical guest.

“This is Hader’s first time as a host; one can only hope he’ll tap into the deep reservoir of characters and impressions he accumulated during his eight years on the show,” the report notes. “And, yes, fingers crossed for Stefon.”

Hader exited “SNL” after the 2012-13 season. In 2012 he became the first “SNL” cast member since Eddie Murphy in 1984 to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy for outstanding supporting actor in a comedy series.

bill hader

Bill Hader

Sep 17, 2014
2:45 pm

NBCU and Bravo: ‘Broader Agenda’ in ‘Shahs of Sunset’ Strike? (Deadline)

One week into a strike by crew members on the Bravo reality series “Shahs of Sunset,” no one is talking, Dominic Patten reports on, and the cable network and parent NBCUniversal appear to be drawing a line in the sand.

Picket lines are reportedly in place at the L.A. offices of show producer Ryan Seacrest Productions — even though the company announced Sept. 7 that it had “every intention of engaging in a discussion as soon as possible.” Members of the postproduction crew walked off the job, and the Motion Picture Editors Guild is fighting for a union contract for those crew members.

“In stark contrast to the quick deal Mark Burnett’s ‘Survivor’ reached with the guild after a similar strike last month, Bravo and NBCU decided last week to push back the Season 4 debut of ‘Shahs’ to take any hard deadline off the table,” Patten writes.

Insiders are saying delays in talks are not coming from Seacrest’s company, but from “further up the food chain,” Patten notes.

The report quotes one of those insiders saying: “NBCU and Bravo are calling the shots and they have a much broader agenda than this show,”

A second source adds: “The reality is NBCUniversal has made a tactical decision to push back against the unionization of unscripted shows. How far and long they are willing to go is uncertain right now.”

Shahs of Sunset - Season 2

Sep 17, 2014
2:44 pm

Discovery Takes Control of Kids’ Channel, Plans to Rebrand (Multichannel News)

Discovery Communications is ending its four-year partnership with toy manufacturer Hasbro in the children’s channel The Hub, and will rebrand the channel as Discovery Family, Multichannel News reports.

Discovery will take a controlling interest in the channel, which launched in 2010, and will expand its programming to include content for parents as well as for kids, the report notes.

“The Hub, which linked programming from Discovery Kids channel like ‘Adventure Camp’ and ‘Flight 29 Down’ with Hasbro properties like Transformers and My Little Pony, was supposed to be the perfect marriage between commerce and entertainment,” the piece reports. “But the network, which competed against kids’ programming juggernauts Nickelodeon and The Disney Channel, never was able to carve out a proper niche. And it came under fire early on because of its close association with a toymaker and for what some critics called violent programming.”


Sep 17, 2014
2:37 pm

CBS Buys Two Comedies From ‘The Millers’ Creator (THR)

The creator of the CBS sitcom “The Millers” — who was also behind “My Name Is Earl,” “Raising Hope” and “Yes, Dear,” among other shows — has sold two new comedy projects to CBS.

The Hollywood Reporter’s Live Feed reports that Greg Garcia’s CBS TV Studios-based banner Amigos de Garcia’s received script commitments for two untitled multicamera projects — one workplace comedy and another comedy about a couple that tries to set up two friends.

Bobby Bowman, a frequent collaborator with Garcia, will write the script and executive produce the workplace comedy along with Garcia, the report notes.

“Bowman’s credits include writing and exec producing Garcia’s ‘My Name Is Earl,’ writing and co-exec producing ‘Raising Hope,’ and penning episodes of CBS’s ‘The Millers,’” the story adds.

The other project comes from Chris Harris (“How I Met Your Mother,” “Late Show With David Letterman”), who will write the script and executive produce along with Garcia.

greg garcia

Greg Garcia

Sep 17, 2014
10:47 am

Drama Series Shuts Down Production After Death on the Set (Deadline)

Production on a science-fiction drama was shut down after a fatality occurred on the set. reports that the TNT series “Falling Skies” shut down following the death of a Teamsters security guard.

The guard was hit by an unattended truck, which rolled down a hill and pinned him against a tree, the story says. The incident happened in a park in Burnaby, British Columbia, where the show is taping its fifth and final season.

“A five-ton truck parked on a 6% slope had been left unattended,” said WorkSafeBC spokesman Scott McCloy, whose group is investigating the death. “The vehicle tailgate was lowered for off-loading of equipment. The truck rolled backwards down the slope and the deceased worker was caught between the tailgate and the tree.”

TNT said it is “deeply saddened by this tragic event, and on behalf of the producers and TNT, we wish to express our heartfelt condolences to the family of the security guard.”


Sep 17, 2014
10:31 am

Original ‘Cougar Town’ Cast Member Leaving Show (TVLine, TheWrap)

An original cast member on “Cougar Town” is leaving the TBS show. (SPOILER ALERT.) A report on says Brian Van Holt, who has played Bobby Cobb on the show since it debuted in 2009 on ABC, is exiting the series early in its sixth and final season. notes that Van Holt will rejoin the show later during season six as a guest star, with only the premiere currently slated to feature him.

Van Holt is leaving to pursue other opportunities, TVLine reports. The actor recently finished work on the Syfy limited series “Ascension.”

brian van holt

Brian Van Holt

Sep 17, 2014
10:27 am

One of the NFL’s Top Advertisers Takes Strong Stance on the League’s Problems: ‘We are not yet satisfied’ (Ad Age)

With the NFL under fire for its handling of suspended Baltimore Ravens player Ray Rice’s attack on his then-fiancee, Anheuser-Busch InBev is weighing in, and it’s not pleased, reports Advertising Age.

The brewer, one of the NFL’s biggest advertisers and sponsors, issued what the publication calls a “stern statement that appears to put the NFL on notice.”

“We are disappointed and increasingly concerned by the recent incidents that have overshadowed this NFL season,” the brewer said in its statement. “We are not yet satisfied with the league’s handling of behaviors that so clearly go against our own company culture and moral code. We have shared our concerns and expectations with the league.”

There was no indication that the brewer may pull advertising or support, however. A spokesman for A-B InBev said the company is “not prepared to share any additional details of our conversations with the league or our sponsorship activity at this time.”

An NFL representative said, “We understand. We are taking action and there will be much more to come.”

Before it issued the statement A-B InBev had declined to comment about Rice’s domestic-violence issue, the story adds.

Please click here to read the full report from Advertising Age.

a-b inbev-logo

Sep 17, 2014
10:11 am

Soft Viewer Turnout for New Syndicated Talk Show (TheWrap)

A new syndicated talk show premiered Monday to viewer numbers that are being described as weak. reports that “The Real,” which stars Tamar Braxton, Tamera Mowry-Housley, Loni Love, Jeannie Mai and Adrienne Bailon, drew what the article calls a “disheartening” 0.9 rating/3 share in primary run metered market averages.

That placed the show 40% below the numbers for its lead-in, the piece adds.

The show’s ratings were also 10 percent below the shows it replaced this year, the piece adds.

the real-title

Sep 17, 2014
10:09 am

Is ‘Crossfire’ in Trouble? CNN Show Reportedly Scrapping Staff (Daily Caller)

CNN’s reboot of the political debate show “Crossfire” may be in trouble, according to a report by the Daily Caller.

Staffers from the show are being shifted over to “The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer” and other shows, the report says. A publicist for CNN reportedly told the publication the show “is on extended hiatus.”

It wouldn’t be the first “extended hiatus” for the CNN show, which went off the air for eight years before the network revived it in 2013, with hosts Newt Gingrich, S.E. Cupp, Stephanie Cutter and Van Jones.

“But the show has never caught on. During the missing Malaysian airliner coverage, the program was routinely dropped for news for lengthy periods of time,” the piece notes.


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