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Jan 16, 2002  •  Post A Comment

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This week’s personnel movesEverything they touch turns to gold: Far from flashes in the proverbial pan, EM’s Most Bankable exude staying power (See Syndication’s 10 Most Bankable Stars)

WB renews ‘Smallville,’ ‘Reba’; seeks to boost Sunday

Proclaiming it is still on track with teen and young female viewers, The WB has made second season orders on freshman dramas “Smallville,” and “Reba,” and sophomore drama “Gilmore Girls.” MORE

MGM sale still up in the air: In response to Tuesday’s report in the Los Angeles Times that MGM is up for sale at $7 billion, the company has denied it has entered into any agreements regarding a transaction and that “there can be no assurance that the company will decide to enter any transactions.” MORE

Dockery to manage diversity for Clear Channel: James Dockery, corporate counsel at Clear Channel Communications, will become director of diversity for the company. MORE

ABC’s Lyne puts ‘Once and Again’ on hiatus: In her first scheduling move since being installed as ABC Entertainment president last week, Susan Lyne is putting the growth-resistant “Once and Again” on the shelf for seven weeks. The hiatus starts this week when the 10 p.m. (ET) Friday time slot is restored to “20/20,” with correspondent John Miller sharing anchor duties with Barbara Walters. MORE

Lineup set for NBA ‘Read to Achieve’ special: The lineup joining Britney Spears on the “NBA All-Star Read to Achieve Celebration” special at 11 a.m. (ET) Feb. 9 has been set. MORE

FCC tells DirecTV it must comply with must-carry rules: The Federal Communications Commission yesterday gave DirecTV 60 days to begin carrying Paxson Communications’ broadcast TV signals to comply with the satellite must-carry law. MORE

NAB will work with FCC on equal employment rules: The National Association of Broadcasters board has voted unanimously to work with the Federal Communications Commission to come up with new equal employment opportunity regulations that can pass court muster, sources said. MORE

Peacock wins week with ‘Friends,’ ‘ER’: NBC won the week of Jan. 7 to 13 among adults 18 to 49 with its regular prime-time lineup. The network beat the highest ratings averages of the season for both ABC and CBS despite airing regular programs against such stiff competition as CBS’s “Survivor: Africa” finale on Thursday and “People’s Choice Awards” on Sunday and ABC’s “American Music Awards” on Thursday and its pair of prime-time NFL telecasts. MORE

Nelvana gets rights to ‘Berenstain Bears’: Nelvana has been granted the rights to “The Berenstain Bears” franchise from Berenstain Enterprises to develop, produce and distribute episodic television series and individual programs based on the popular children’s brand. MORE

King stretches truth about contract renewal: Larry King’s well-known penchant for inflating his paycheck backfired on the CNN schmoozemeister Tuesday when people familiar with negotiations for his nearly completed new contract scoffed at a leak to the New York Post that he’s doubling his salary to $14 million a year. MORE

Cable nets shuffle ad sales execs: Musical chairs continues in the world of TV advertising sales, with changes at or near the top of A&E, Rainbow, Discovery and Fox Cable, among others. MORE

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