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Dec 30, 2003  •  Post A Comment

Novack Announces His Retirement From Time Warner Post

Time Warner Vice Chairman Kenneth Novack said he will retire at the end of 2003, as the exodus of former America Online executives continued following the flawed merger of the online giant and the media titan.

Though Mr. Novack, 62, is resigning his post as vice chairman, he will remain an outside director of the company. He also has plans to join the Boston law firm of Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo as senior counsel. ’60 Minutes’ Tops Christmas Week: Ed Bradley’s interview with Michael Jackson pushed “60 Minutes” to No. 1 among prime-time programs for the Christmas week, traditionally one of the least-watched weeks of the year.

The hour, half of which was devoted to the Jackson piece, averaged 18.8 million viewers, coming out of a 15-minute post-game show, “The NFL Today,” that aired from 7:13 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and averaged 18.5 million viewers. (The game itself, a satisfying Green Bay victory over Denver, officially ranks as the most-watched show of the week, averaging 21.1 viewers between 4:15 p.m. and 7:13 p.m. ET).

The performance by “60 Minutes” was up significantly from “Minutes'” season-to-date average of nearly 15.8 million viewers, according to data from Nielsen Media Research. It was the fifth time in six weeks the magazine has broken into Nielsen’s Top 10 and the first time “Minutes” ranked first for the week since July 2, 2002.

Still, the last installment of “Minutes” in 2003 will not go into the record books as the most watched of the season so far. That honor goes to the Nov. 30 edition, in which former NFL star Lawrence Taylor aired dirty linen, which averaged 19.14 million viewers.

The Dec. 14 edition of the newsmagazine, devoted to the capture of Saddam Hussein, averaged 18.76 million viewers.

Led by “60 Minutes,” CBS finished first for the week of Dec. 22 to 27 in total viewers (9.73 million), followed by ABC (8.1 million), NBC (7.34 million), Fox (6.01 million), The WB (2.71 million) and UPN (2.62 million).

In the 18 to 49 demo, ABC slipped into first place with an average 2.8 rating, followed by CBS (2.6), NBC and Fox (2.5 for each), and The WB and UPN (1.0 for each).

Davis Added to CBS’s ‘At the Half’: Sports Illustrated writer Seth Davis has been added as a contributor to CBS Sports’ “At the Half” college basketball halftime show for the regular season.

Mr. Davis will make his debut on Saturday, Jan. 3, during regional coverage of North Carolina at Kentucky and Michigan State at Syracuse.

He will be teamed with analyst Bill Raftery and various hosts throughout the season.