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Good morning.It’s Tuesday, December 17, 2013, and this is your first early morning briefing.

Tonight’s Premieres:
PBS: How Sherlock Changed the World at 9p
truTV: Hard Core Pawn at 9p

Tonight’s Finales:
BET: Real Husbands of Hollywood at 10:30p
E!: Giuliana and Bill at 8p, Tia and Tamera at 9p
HBO: REAL Sports with Bryant Gumbel at 10p
ID: A Crime to Remember at 10p
NBC: The Voice at 9p
TBS: Trust Me, I’m a Game Show Host at 10:30p
TLC: Little People, Big World at 9p


They didn’t just make music. They made history.

Fridays at 10 pm et/pt

Smithsonian Channel
For ad sales, contact: Mary Ellen Bottone at

Brian’s back! Three weeks after the death of Family Guy‘s talking dog drew fan outrage, it was revealed Sunday that Brian was alive, courtesy of a Christmas wish and time travel. “I mean, you didn’t really think we’d kill off Brian, did you?” tweeted show creator Seth MacFarlane. “Jesus, we’d have to be f***ing high.”


With an average of only 13,000 daily viewers, Al Jazeera America, launched in August, didn’t get off to a strong start. But according to an email provided to Buzzfeed, that doesn’t matter to the channel partially funded by the government of Qatar. “We are investing in programming, talent and marketing,” said the net. “We are in this for the long term.”

Eager for a bigger piece of the ad revenue pie, Facebook is working to push dollars from TV to digital. A leaked 32-page document reported by TechCrunch reveals the social networking service’s plan to “beat television with reach and YouTube with targeting,” starting in Q1 2014.

Nielsen released a study on Monday confirming that TV technology in homes is getting more sophisticated: 16 percent of households have Internet-enabled televisions, and 83 percent have HDTVs (versus 41 percent in 2009); DVRs are in 49 percent of households. The research company also reported 54 percent of households use digital cable to access TV content, versus 31 percent for satellite.

The Television Academy’s 23rd Hall of Fame inductees are Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep), writer-producer David E. Kelley (The Practice), late-night host Jay Leno, Fox Broadcasting Company founder Rupert Murdoch and former president of ABC Entertainment Brandon Stoddard. Sound pioneer Ray Dolby will be inducted posthumously. Ceremony is Tuesday, March 11 in LA.

A new study from Kantar Media suggests sports programming is more important than ever to the bottom line. Network TV ad expenditures in the third quarter of 2013 fell 17.9 percent versus a year go, because there was no Olympics season boost, according to the report. But Spanish-language ad spending saw a 9.9 percent increase, thanks to more hours of soccer programming.

Barbara Walters Presents: The 10 Most Fascinating People of 2013 includes a chat with Miley Cyrus, in which the singer opens up about her breakup with Liam Hemsworth. Others in the top ten include Jennifer Lawrence, NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden and baby George, heir to the British throne. The 21st installment if the ABC special airs Wednesday, December 18 at 9:30p.

Monster.com got promotion, and Pivot got a new associate producer. After collaborating with online job search firm Monster and its Cool Job program, Millennial-centric Pivot hired Lata Pandya for late-night news program TakePart Live. Pandya begins January 6, 2014.

Foot Locker is teaming with the NBA for a multiyear partnership that makes the sports retailer an official marketing partner of the league. One element, a new fan engagement program called “Kicks of All-Star,” will live on a branded section of NBA.com and show which sneakers players are wearing.

AOL launched Gwyneth Paltrow and fitness guru Tracy Anderson‘s 10-episode documentary series, The Restart Project, on Monday. From Ryan Seacrest Productions, the show tells the stories of women who have overcome hardship, now “transforming their lives and bodies through diet and exercise.” First two eps are available on Restart-project.com. 

Bravo greenlit reaction video show People’s Couch, after a test run in October, reports Variety. The Studio Lambert reality series turns cameras on TV fans, showing how they respond to shows. 

Voting for the SAG Awards opened Monday. Votes must be received by noon (PT) on Friday, January 17; awards ceremony airs Saturday, January 18 at 8p on TBS and TNT.

Georgie Okell joins Fuse News, Fuse‘s nightly music news program, starting January 6, 2014. Okell, who replaces the departing Alexa Chung, hosted U.K. Channel 4‘s Freshly Squeezed.


Incredible wilderness getaways are the focus of upcoming Nat Geo series, Building Wild. Designer Paul DiMeo (Extreme Makeover: Home Edition) partners with woodsman Pat Bakaitis to create improbable retreats starting Tuesday, January 14 at 9p.

Not a football fan? Hallmark is airing its first annual Kitten Bowl on Super Bowl Sunday. Host Beth Stern will be joined by celebs including Regis Philbin, Rachael Ray and Hoda Kotb for the feline festivities on February 2 at 12p.

Forced to choose between getting married or getting on a plane home, foreign fiances of American citizens have three months to wed before their visas expire on TLC‘s upcoming 90 Day Fiance. The series documents the culture shock and skeptical families of four anxious couples involved in international romances; another couple’s journey is tracked exclusively on TLC.com. Series premieres Sunday, January 12 at 10p.

Using modern technology, two brothers from Michigan are the latest to embark on a 200+-years-long hunt for a storied treasure in The Curse of Oak Island. The docu-series from Prometheus Entertainment debuts Sunday, January 5 at 10p on History.

An intrepid St. Louis group risks arrest and bodily harm to rescue historic items from the wrecking ball in Discovery‘s Salvage Crew. The Coolfire Originals docu-series premieres with three back-to-back eps on Sunday, December 22 at 11a.

Esquire bets on the world of professional horse race handicapping in new series Horseplayers. Handicappers compete to win the annual National Handicapping Championship – and nearly $1 million – in the Go Go Luckey production, premiering Tuesday, January 21 at 10p.



Four teams of survivalists – woodsmen, mountaineers, military vets and endurance athletes – are dropped into the wilderness in Nat Geo reality competition Ultimate Survival Alaska. In the second episode of season two, airing Sunday, December 22 at 9p, setbacks include an unexpected bear den, a capsized boat and a tumble into a glacial lake.

Mythbusters comes back for its twelfth season with a Star Wars-themed episode featuring Sophia Bush (Chicago PD). Could Luke have really swung across that chasm holding Princess Leia? Find out Saturday, January 4 at 8p.

It’s a date: ABC and Dick Clark Productions announced the 2014 Billboard Music Awards will be broadcast live from Las Vegas on Sunday, May 18. The three-hour 2013 telecast was the night’s highest-rated show in A18-49 (3.5/10).

TLC‘s Cake Boss returns Monday, December 30, for Cake Boss Kickoff LIVE. From 8p-11p, the net will offer viewers watch-and-win prizes, and the chance to engage with “Boss” Buddy on TLC’s digital and social platforms. Cake Boss anchors the night at 9p, with Bakery Boss moving to its new time slot afterwards, at 10p.

Program Call:Cynopsis Media will be producing its annual NATPE Shopping Guide sent to all Cynopsis and Cynopsis Kids subscribers on Thursday, January 23, 2014, the week before NATPE Market and Conference opens at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach Resort. If your company is an official exhibitor at NATPE 2014, please email Lynn Leahey at: lynn@cynopsis.com for details on how to submit listings.


Rosie Perez (It Could Happen to You) has been added to the cast of ABC pilot An American Education, reports Deadline. Perez will play a tough-talking vice principal opposite British actor Jack Whitehall.

Upcoming cable channel El Rey‘s From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series added three new cast members. EW.com reports Adrianne Palicki (Friday Night Lights), Jake Busey (son of Gary) and Lane Garrison (Bonnie & Clyde) are onboard for the series. No premiere date has been set.

Dominic Adams has landed on season two of Lifetime‘s Devious Maids as a regular. The ABC Studios series, first among cable nets in its Sunday at 10p slot, is slated for a summer 2014 return.


MiTu a multi-channel network dedicated to Latino content, announced a content syndication deal with Univision Communications to provide original and partner-produced content to Uni’s digital platforms.


Breaking Bad spin-off Better Call Saul will be available to Netflix subscribers in Europe and Latin America not long after the show makes its U.S. debut on AMC, reports the streaming service, and available in the U.S. and Canada shortly after its AMC season finale. Breaking Bad “has proven very popular with Netflix subscribers around the world,” said chief content officer Ted Sarandos. Netflix had reportedly been eager to grab Saul if AMC couldn’t reach a licensing deal with Sony Pictures Television.


Sundance Channel is celebrating Santa’s big day with Oy to the World: A Mel Brooks Christmas Marathon, hosted by the moviemaker. The Producers, History of the World Part 1, Young Frankenstein and Robin Hood: Men in Tights air December 25, starting at 6a. “I want to thank Sundance Channel for giving the world the best Christmas present ever,” said Brooks. “23.5 hours of me!”

NUVOtv is counterprogramming on Christmas Eve with a “Not So Silent Night” action movie marathon all day Christmas Eve and Christmas. Not an elf in sight in movies including Marked for Death, Under Siege and Extreme Ops


Homeland drew its biggest audience ever on Sunday night, according to Nielsen estimates. The season three finale of the Showtime crime thriller delivered 2.4 million viewers at 9p, up 12 percent from its year-ago finale, and 2.9 million for the night. The finale of the net’s freshman entry Masters of Sex attracted 1.2 million viewers at 10p, up 21 percent from its premiere, and 1.5 million for the night.

Fox comedy The Simpsons was Sunday night’s number one entertainment series among A18-49, up 13 percent week to week with 3.5/9. Family Guy got an 11 percent lift, to 3.0 in the demo, as Brian the dog was resurrected. Boosted by an NFL overrun, Fox was the highest-rated net, with 4.1/11, and second (to NBC football) in total viewers, with 11 million.

The fall finale of ABC‘s Once Upon a Time Sunday night was down three tenths, to a series low of 1.9 in A18-49. Betrayal was up a tenth for a 10-week rating high of .8.

Fox News is dominating the year’s cable news ratings chart, through December 8 averaging 1.77 million total viewers and 297,000 in A25-54. MSNBC was second (645,000 viewers and 203,000 in the news demo), followed by CNN (578,000 viewers and 187,000 A25-54 and HLN (403,000 viewers and 142,000 A25-54).

TV Playback Rank, based on the difference between Nielsen’s first-reported Live + Same Day and the final Live + 7 Day rating for the week of November 25, 2013

Program Live+SD
A18-49 US AA%   Live+7 

US AA% +7 minus SD contribution
The Blacklist (NBC) 3.0 5.1  2.1 (70%)
Sleepy Hollow (FOX) 2.2 3.6  1.4 (64%)
Once Upon a Time (ABC) 1.9 3.2 1.3 (68%)
Castle (ABC) 2.1 3.4 1.3 (62%)
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC) 2.6 3.9 1.3 (50%)
Grimm (NBC) 1.3 2.6 1.5 (100%)
Person of Interest (CBS) 2.2 3.4 1.2 (55%)
How I Met Your Mother (CBS) 2.9 4.1 1.2 (41%)
New Girl (FOX) 1.9 3.1 1.2 (63%)
Almost Human (FOX) 1.9 3.0 1.1 (58%)

Source: The Nielsen Company. National Live + Same Day and Live +7 Day Program Ratings. Program rankers based on regular, original telecasts only.

Friday A18-49 Analysis: ABC won the most A18-49 viewers Friday with 1.5/5, according to final primetime national ratings from Nielsen. CBS’s Undercover Boss was number one at 8p with 1.4/5, followed by 1.1/4 for NBC’s Dateline. ABC’s Shark Tank surged at 9p with 2.0/7, versus 1.3/4 for NBC’s Grimm. ABC was still on top at 10p with 1.4/5 for 20/20, trailed by 1.2/4 for CBS’s Blue Bloods.

Live + Same Day Household Ratings: Friday, December 6, 2013  time period averages.  Source: NTI, Galaxy as dated. Live+SD.

CBS 5.8/10 Undercover Boss 4.5/8, Hawaii Five-O 6.0/10, Blue Bloods 7.0/13
ABC 3.7/6 Last Man Standing 4.0/7, The Neighbors 2.7/5, Shark Tank 4.5/8, 20/20 3.9/7
NBC 3.5/6 Dateline Friday 4.2/7, Grimm 3.1/5
FOX 1.7/3 Bones [r] 2.2/4, Raising Hope 1.3/2, Raising Hope 1.2/2
ION 1.0/2 Criminal Minds .9/2, Criminal Minds 1.0/2, Criminal Minds 1.0/2
UNI .8/1 Por Siempre Mi Amor [r] .8/1, Que Vida Me Robo [r] .7/1, Teleton USA 1 .9/2
TELE .8/1 Marido en Alquiler .8/1, Rein Sur .8/1, Santa Diablo .7/1
CW .6/1 Carrie Diaries .5/1, Nikita .4/1
UMA .4/1 Cineplex .4/1, Cineplex .3/1

A18-49:  ABC 1.5/5, CBS 1.3/4, NBC 1.2/4, FOX .7/2, UNI .6/2, TELE .5/2, ION .5/2, CW .2/1, UMA .2/1


Marc Buhaj was promoted to Senior Vice President, Programming and General Manager, Disney XD. Buhaj had been Senior Vice President, International Original Series and Co-Productions, Disney Television Animation.

HLN tapped Keith Brown to serve as Senior Vice President, Programming; Kari Kim for the position of Vice President, Development and Adrienne Lopez as Director of Special Projects. Brown had run Perez-Brown Media, Kim had been VP, Production and Development at Worldwide Biggies and Lopez’s experience included serving as VP of Talent and Casting at Nickelodeon.

Kate Rohmann was upped to Vice President, Operations at BSTV Entertainment. Rohmann had been line producer.

Marco Bresaz jumped across AMC Networks to join AMC as Vice President of Unscripted Programming. Bresaz had been SVP of Original Programming and Development at Sundance Channel.

This Day In History sponsored by Discovery Fit & Health:
1989 – The Simpsons debuted.

Answer to Our Last Trivia Question: What was the first game show to be broadcast in color? The Price Is Right. Kudos to: Steve Daniloff-WYOU-TV, WBRE-TV/PA, Paul Gluck-Ardmore House Media/Ardmore, PA, Gerry Bixenspan-TV Marketing, Inc./NYC, Lewis Cosby-Knoxville, Cynthia New-Charter/Cape Girardeau, MO, David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA/LA, Larry Hutchings/Pacific Palisades, CA, Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA, Michael Malone/LA.

Today’s Trivia Question – Game Show Theme Week: Which game show spun off a short-lived kid’s version in 1969, featuring stars dressed up as fictional and historical characters?(Email trivia@cynopsis.comwith your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone. Unofficial rules: Only the second four correct answers from each time zone will be mentioned; and once you’ve been mentioned in any of the Cynopsis editions, you can’t be mentioned again that calendar week.).



Our awards show continues to spotlight the groundbreaking work created by sports media, don’t let your 2013 efforts go unnoticed!

Entry Deadline:January 17, 2014 |  Late Submissions: January 24, 2014
Awards Event: April 2014 (NYC)

Learn about the awards program & how to enter:

Keep Watching & Reading,
Lynn Leahey

Roberta Caploe: Editorial Director
Diane K Schwartz: Senior Vice President, Media Communications Group 

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JOB OPENING: ACCOUNT DIRECTOR/CSE/ATL: 7+ yrs, Knowledge of media, advertising and sponsorships. Manage & grow media integration for Fortune 500 clients. Experience developing compelling creative media campaign. Resume to: jobs@groupcse.com (12/24)

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ABC: Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. [r], The Goldbergs [r], Trophy Wife [r], What Would You Do?
CBS: NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles, Person of Interest 
CW: The Originals [r], Supernatural [r]
FOX: Dads [r], Brooklyn Nine-Nine [r], New Girl [r], The Mindy Project [r]
ION: Criminal Minds, Criminal Minds, Criminal Minds
MyTV: Bones, Bones
NBC: The Biggest Loser, The Voice [
PBS: Red Metal: The Copper Country Strike of 1913, How Sherlock Changed the World [
Telemundo: Marido en Alquiler, La Reina del Sur, Santa Diabla
UMA: Boa, The Bourne Ultimatum
Univision: Por Siempre Mi Amor, Lo Que la Vida Me Robo, Mentir Para Vivir

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