Oprah Winfrey has made a strategic move in her effort to revitalize her ratings-challenged OWN cable network, and it’s a move that may resonate with longtime Winfrey fans, Advertising Age reports.
The move is rolling out “Oprah Builds a Network,” a documentary about her struggle to get OWN off the ground. Part one of the two-parter aired Sunday, with part two set for July 15 at 9 p.m. on OWN.
The program represents the kind of self-examination that’s consistent with Winfrey’s past pattern of turning her personal struggles into positives — and in many cases, into ratings. “Oprah Winfrey has a long history of turning her personal struggles into ‘aha! moments’ that resonate with viewers,” the story reports.
The piece adds: “In Sunday night’s episode, Ms. Winfrey said her celebrity status was both a great asset for the fledgling network and a great detriment because it raised expectations ‘beyond anything I was capable of doing on my own.’
“She also reiterated regret over remaining primarily focused on the final months of ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’ when OWN was starting out. ‘I can honestly say I wasn’t committed to the network because I was committed to the show,’ she said.”
Winfrey admits that the network wasn’t ready when it began airing on Jan. 1, 2011, adding that that decision to go ahead with the rollout was made to avoid disappointing her fans by delaying the debut.
Here’s a teaser for the documentary: