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TVNewswire: Wednesday, Feb. 27

Feb 27, 2008  •  Post A Comment

ABC, Fox, Sony Want Leno After ‘Tonight’ (New York Times)
ABC and Fox have each contacted Jay Leno through intermediaries to indicate their interest in “The Tonight Show” host after he’s succeeded by Conan O’Brien next year, the New York Times reports. Sony Pictures Television has also approached Leno, who’s paid about $25 million a year, about a syndicated talk show, the newspaper says.
Emmy to Salute Reality Hosts With Award, For Real (Daily Variety)
The Emmys may give an award for best reality-show host in a nod to the genre’s popularity, Daily Variety reports, citing people it didn’t identify. While an Emmy spokesman called reports of the new award “premature,” the Academy tentatively approved it. Official approval may take place next month, the newspaper says.
Banks, Kutcher Convince ABC They’re Beautiful (Daily Variety)
ABC ordered a reality series to be co-produced by Ashton Kutcher and Tyra Banks, Daily Variety reports. ABC ordered eight episodes of the yet-to-be-named show about good-looking people living together in a house, the magazine says.
NBC Won’t Bet More Chips, So ‘Las Vegas’ Busts (Daily Variety)“Las Vegas” won’t be renewed by NBC, which began airing the show in 2003, Daily Variety reports. The expensive casino sets made the prospect of restarting the show after the Writers Guild of America strike cost-prohibitive, show creator Gary Scott Thompson told TV Guide earlier this week.
Akimbo Follows the Money, Focusing on Transactions Over Set-Tops (TVWeek)
Set-top box company Akimbo will focus on publishing and advertising systems for video on demand providers after its efforts to deliver niche content through its boxes didn’t work as well as planned, TVWeek reports. Among the services Akimbo will provide are subscription, pay-per-minute and download-to-own services, the magazine says.
Coach Calls Foul on Big Ten Network (Chicago Tribune)
Michigan State basketball coach Tom Izzo called Big Ten Network a “PR nightmare” because most cable subscribers in the state can’t seen his team play on TV, the Chicago Tribune reports. Increased pressure by the schools could weaken BTN’s demand to be on basic cable plans.Cable operators, led by Comcast, want the channel on a sports tier.
Kimmel-Affleck Video Gets 2 Million YouTube Hits (New York Times)
Jimmy Kimmel’s joke video about his affair with Ben Affleck has gotten more than 2 million YouTube hits since the clip was shown on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” after Sunday’s Oscars, the New York Times reports. A response to his girlfriend Sarah Silverman’s clip about her own relationship with Matt Damon, the bit includes a “We Are The World”-type sing-a-long, and features the likes of Brad Pitt, Harrison Ford and Cameron Diaz.
‘Deal’ Will Go Global for May Sweeps (Reuters)“Deal or No Deal” and its host Howie Mandel will mark the May sweeps by taking the game show overseas to countries such as South Africa, Estonia and the Philippines, Reuters says. About 40 versions of the show are produced around the world.
‘Access Hollywood’ Host Bush Will Get Radio Show (Reuters)“Access Hollywood” co-anchor Billy Bush signed an agreement for a weeknight radio show on Westwood One network, Reuters reports. “The Billy Bush Show,” which starts in April, will center on entertainment stores and celebrity guests.
—Danny King

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