Charles Barkley signs for live TNT talk show
New York-Charles Barkley, whose gift for gab netted him a spot on Turner Network Television’s NBA booth team after he left the basketball court, is getting a half-hour live general talk show, “Listen Up! Charles Barkley With Earnie Johnson,” at 7 p.m. Thursday nights on TNT starting Oct. 31. Mr. Barkley is also scheduled to appear weekly on CNN’s “Talkback Live.”
Showtime schedules hate-crime film for 2003
New York-The tragic true-hate-crime story of an African American man who was dragged to his death while chained to the back of a pickup truck by three white men in a small Texas town is the basis for Showtime’s “Jasper, Texas,” an original telefilm starring Jon Voight, Louis Gossett and Joe Morton. The film is slated for June 2003, when its premiere will commemorate the fifth anniversary of the crime.
Large media companies see signs of ad recovery
Los Angeles-Merrill Lynch analyst Jessica Reif Cohen reported that the big news from her annual media and entertainment conference last week was the advertising turnaround for bigger media companies.
“There are signs of a very strong turnaround, with strong growth across various businesses. While we had anticipated this, it seems to be happening much faster and stronger than expected,” she said in a special note to clients.
She cited that Viacom’s TV station pacings are up about 25 percent, and Fox reports pacing up in the mid-20s percent range. The Los Angeles conference was closed to the press.