03/04/15: Oprah shuts doors at Harpo Studios Chicago; Andrew Lack in talks to return to NBC News; Jillian Michaels partners with Spike TV on fitness series


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Good morning. It’s Wednesday March 4, 2015, and this is your first early morning briefing.

Tonight’s Premieres:
BBC America: Broadchurch at 10p
Bounce: Selma A March to Remember at 9p
CBS: CSI: Cyber at 10p
FYI: My City’s Just Not That Into Me at 10p
Smithsonian: Killer IQ: Lion vs. Hyena at 8p
TLC: Strange Love at 10p

Tonight’s Finales:
A&E: Wahlburgers at 10p
BET: It’s a Mann’s World at 9p, The Game at 10p
USA: Suits at 10p
VH1: Mob Wives at 8p

Oprah Winfrey is shuttering Harpo Studios’ Chicago studios and moving production to OWN headquarters in LA. Winfrey informed her staff of the relocation Tuesday morning, according to the Hollywood Reporter. While Chicago has been “everything” to her, said Winfrey, “the time had come to downsize this part of the business and to move forward.”


Andrew Lack, president of NBC News from 1993 to 2001, is in early talks with NBCUniversal about returning to take a top post there. NBCU has been criticized for its response following the revelation that anchor Brian Williams misrepresented reporting experiences, leading to Williams’ six-month suspension without pay. Since September, Lack has served as CEO of the Broadcasting Board of Governors.

NBC commissioned I Can Do That!, developed and distributed by Armoza Formats. Based on an international format currently airing in over 15 countries, the series features celebrities putting on an entertainment show with skills they didn’t know they had. Marlon Wayans hosts.

Spike TV gave the green light to eight more episodes of Lip Sync Battle. Among the performers: Emily Blunt, Anne Hathaway, Terrence Howard, Justin Bieber, Queen Latifah, Will Arnett, Mike Tyson and Terry Crews. The show debuts on Thursday, April 2 at 10p.

IFC‘s Garfunkel & Oates, the comedy based on Riki Lindhome and Kate Micucci‘s musical web videos, won’t be back for a second season. The AMC Networks-owned cabler canceled the series.

ABC is moving forward with Uncle Buck, a comedy pilot based on the 1989 John Candy film of the same name. Mike Epps will star in the title role; Nia Long co-stars.

There was a whole lotta love in the room at the Cynopsis Social Good Awards yesterday morning, as execs celebrated good works that did the television industry proud. From social justice and sustainability initiatives to health awareness campaigns, the array of nominees was truly impressive. Awards went Nat Geo, USA, OMD, MTV…the list goes on, and you’ll find it here. But the truth is, everyone was a winner – congratulations to all for jobs well done.


Thursday, April 23, 2015 | Astor Center, NYC | REGISTER NOW

We’re no longer in a “digital” world. We’re beyond it, in a confusing moment of media history where content lives everywhere and is generated by everyone… where the line between viewers and producers has blurred away. Where exciting revenue models can gain and lose traction in a moment, sometimes leaving more questions than answers in their wake.

Join us on April 23rd to get the information you need to meet and exceed your business goals.



Universal Cable Productions has signed an overall deal with reality television producer Charlie Ebersol of The Company. As part of the deal, Ebersol will develop and produce scripted programming with UCP for NBCUniversal’s portfolio of networks as well as for external and digital networks. “Charlie Ebersol amazes me,” said Dawn Olmstead, EVP, Development at UCP. “He has his hand in all areas of pop culture in very relevant ways. He’s a big thinker with big ideas who looks at our business from a unique perspective.”

Jillian Michaels (The Biggest Loser) is partnering with Spike TV to find the next fitness phenom in non-scripted original series Sweat Inc. The net ordered 10 one-hour epis from 3 Ball Entertainment, set to go into production this summer for a fall premiere.

Spike TV partnered with Legendary Pictures to develop Emergency Broadcast, an original scripted series featuring a group of government first responders who confront the planet’s crises and disasters. Based on an original idea by Thomas Tull, Chairman and CEO of Legendary, the project re-teams Legendary with longtime collaborator and best-selling author Max Brooks, who serves as a consultant on the project.

Omnicom Media Group has entered into an upfront agreement with National CineMedia (NCM) to bring Omnicom client brands to movie patrons across NCM’s network in 2015. The deal includes NCM’s FirstLook pre-show, Shazam cinema interactivity, movie theater lobby activations, and online and mobile video campaigns specifically targeting NCM movie audiences.

WE tv ordered 10 hour-long episodes of Cutting It: In the ATL to premiere in May. The reality series showcases the high-stakes, drama-filled world of Atlanta hair salons as four salon owners go head-to-head.

Spike TV is teaming with actor/producer Dwayne Johnson and Dany Garcia‘s $7 Bucks Productions for a development deal to create and produce live events, specials, sports and initiatives surrounding veterans. “Dwayne Johnson, Dany Garcia and $7 Bucks Productions personify Spike’s direction to be big and bold with original programming that speaks to a broader audience,” saidCasey Patterson,exec producer/EVP Talent Development and Production, Viacom Entertainment Group.


Syfy‘s fifth and final season of Lost Girl kicks offFriday, April 17 at 10p. Also on that date, the season two of the net’s werewolf dramaBitten premieres at 8p. The series lands in its regular time slot debut Friday, April 24 at 9p.

Anarchy in the monarchy: E! debuts its first original scripted drama series, The Royals, with an extended 75-minute premiere on Sunday, March 15 at 10p. Leading the are Elizabeth Hurley and Vincent Regan as Queen Helena and King Simon, along with William Moseley as Prince Liam and Alexandra Park as Princess Eleanor.

What do Guy Fieri and Blake Shelton have in common? Their love for hunting turkeys  and eating them. On a special episode of Avian-X TV, airing Saturday, March 7 at 7p on Sportsman Channel, the pair spend time gobbling turkey on Shelton’s ranch.


WE tv renewed Mary Mary and L.A. Hair for fourth seasons. Mary Mary returns on Thursday, March 5 at 10p, while L.A. Hair is set for a summer premiere.

FXX comedy Man Seeking Woman will be back in 2016. The network ordered a 10-episode second season of the Jay Baruchel series.


Bill Murray will guest star on Rashida Jones’ upcoming TBS police comedy Angie Tribeca as Vic Deakins, a grocery-store clerk who flirts with Jones’ Angie.

The Wonder Years alum Fred Savage is heading back to TV. The actor has been tapped to co-star in FOX‘s upcoming Rob Lowe comedy The Grinder as Lowe’s younger brother.

Alicia Coppola is returning to NCIS: Los Angeles, reports TVLine, reprising her role as FBI Agent Lisa Rand on an episode of the CBS drama this spring.

Jeremy Jordan (Smash) has been tapped for a guest spot on CBS series Supergirl. He’ll portray Winn, a superstar IT whiz.


Sarah Michelle Gellar (The Crazy Ones, Buffy the Vampire Slayer) is joining the voice cast of Disney XD‘s Star Wars Rebels, which already includes her husband Freddie Prinze Jr. The actress will have a recurring role on the animated series. “We’re thrilled to have Sarah Michelle Gellar on board for season two,” said executive producer/supervising director Dave Filoni. “She is a true ‘Star Wars Rebels’ fan and her passion undoubtedly comes through in the voice recording sessions.”


Want to find out what shows are online and when?

Check out the Watcheroo Digital Programming Guide

Organized by show name, date, and platform, we have everything you’ll need to be caught up on digital premieres, ongoing programs, live-streamed events and integrated series.


Science Channel had its best month in net history in February, with double digit Live+3 Primetime audience growth in key demos including P2+ (up 23 percent, to 387,000), P18-49 (up 23 percent, to 158,000) and P25-54 (up 26 percent, to 177,000). It was also Science’s youngest month since 2011, with a Prime median age of 46.

Meredith Vieira (1.2, up 9 percent) surged 40 percent in the W25-54 demo, matching its season high 0.7.

Celebrity Name Game (1.5, up 7 percent) hit a new season high and rose 13 percent among W25-54 (new season high 0.9 demo rating).

Monday’s finale of Ellen’s Design Challenge was the highest-rated show of the night on HGTV, averaging.86 among P25-54. Averaging a .83 P25-54 rating this season, the six-episode furniture design competition grew 48 percent versus the prior 13 week average and ranked as a top 10-rated cable program for the Monday 9p time period among P25-54.

The season three premiere of Fuse docu-series, BigFreedia: Queen of Bounce ranked as the top season premiere ever for the network, delivering 300,000 total viewers and double-digit gains in total viewer delivery (up 41 percent),P18-34 delivery (up 23 percent) and HH ratings (up 38 percent) versus its second season premiere, based on Nielsen Live+3numbers.

Broadcast Evening News Shows Weekly Average Ratings (week of February 23, 2015)
Nightly News 9.67 million total viewers; 2.1/8 2.46 million A25-54
ABC: World News Tonight 9.47 million total viewers; 2.0/7 and 2.37 million A25-54
CBS: Evening News 8.03 million total viewers; 1.6/6 and 1.96 million A25-54
Source: Nielsen, NTI Total Viewers and A25-54 Live+SD

Top Ten Basic Cable Network Performance among Live+7 Total Viewers for the week of: 2/9/2015Primetime(000)/Total Prog. Day (000)
2642/DSNY 1345
AMC 2293/ADSM* 1321
DSNY 2241/NICK 1311
DISC 1883/ FOXN 1100
FOXN 1799/TOON 1064
USA 1743/TNT 1015
TBSC 1672/USA 948
HIST 1568/NAN* 884
HGTV 1559/HGTV 831
ADSM 1404/DISC 772
Source: Turner Research from The Nielsen Company data. All ratings based on Total US Television Universe of
116,400,000 homes. * + Network broadcasts less than 51% of minutes in a 24 hour day. Notes: Data based on most currently available Nielsen Data stream; Final: Live+7. Primetime is Mon-Sat 8p-11p and Sun 7p-11p. Total day is Mon-Sun 6a-6a for household and demographic performances.

Top Ten Basic Cable Network Performance among Live+7 A18-49 for the week of: 2/9/2015Primetime (000), Total Prog. Day (000)
1397/ ADSM* 766
AMC 1329/TNT 473
TBSC 854/USA 408
DISC 788/NAN* 402
USA 779/TBSC 392
ADSM 729/AMC 383
FX 648/NICK 373
BRAV 578/FX 348
AEN 533/TOON 339
HIST 533/DSNY 335
Source: Turner Research from The Nielsen Company data. All ratings based on Total US Television Universe
116,400,000 homes. * + Network broadcasts less than 51% of minutes in a 24 hour day. Notes: Data based on most currently available Nielsen Data stream; Final: Live+7. Primetime is Mon-Sat 8p-11p and Sun 7p-11p. Total day is Mon-Sun 6a-6a for household and demographic performance.

Top 10 Basic Cable Programs among Live+7 A18-49 (000) for the week of: 2/9/2015
Walking Dead
(AMC) 12088
Better Call Saul (AMC) 4138
Talking Dead (AMC) 4006
NBA All-Star Night (TNT) 3748
NBA All-Star Game (TNT) 3374
Gold Rush (DISC) 2767
Love & Hip Hop Hollywood (VH1) 2186
Alaskan Bush People (DISC) 2148
The Real Housewives of Atlanta (BRAV) 2142
Being Mary Jane (BET) 1965
Source: Turner Research from Nielsen Media Research Data. All ratings based on Total US Television Universe
of 116,400,000 homes; Ranked by Delivery (000); Final: Live+7

Top 10 M-F Syndicated Strip Series for the week of 2/16/15 ranked in order by HH Rtg
Wheel of Fortune (CTD) 7.6AA
Jeopardy (CTD) 7.4AA
Judge Judy (CTD) 7.3AA
Family Feud (2/T) 7.2AA
Big Bang Theory (WB) 6.4AA
Entertainment Tonight (CTD) 3.9AA
Modern Family (2/T) 3.6AA
Dr. Phil Show (CTD) 3.5AA
Live with Kelly & Michael (DAD) 3.4AA
Inside Edition (CTD) 3.4AA
Source: Nielsen Media Research

Top 10 M-F Syndicated Strip Series for the week of 2/16/15 ranked in order by A18-49 Rtg
The Big Bang Theory (WB) 3.1AA
Family Feud (2/T) 2.4AA
Modern Family (2/T) 2.2AA
Family Guy (2/T) 1.8AA
Jeopardy (CTD) 1.7AA
Judge Judy (CTD) 1.7AA
Wheel of Fortune (CTD) 1.6AA
Two and a Half Men (WB) 1.6AA
How I Met Your Mother (2/T) 1.4AA
Seinfeld (SPT) 1.3AA
Source: Nielsen Media Research

Monday A18-49 Analysis: NBC won the most A18-49 viewers Monday with 2.7/8, according to final primetime national ratings from Nielsen. NBC topped 8p with 3.7/12 for The Voice, followed by ABC’s The Bachelor: The Women Tell All at 2.4/8. NBC’s The Voice held onto the lead at 9p with 4.2/12, versus 2.4/7 for ABC’s The Bachelor: The Women Tell All. NBC finished the night at #1 with Night Shift at 1.4/4. CBS’ NCIS: Los Angeles followed at 1.2/2.

A18-49: NBC 2.7/8, FOX 1.8/6, CBS 1.7/5, ABC 1.7/5, UNI 1.3/4, TELE 0.6/2, ION 0.3/1, CW 0.2/1

Live + Same Day Household Ratings: Monday, March 2, 2015 time period averages. Source: NTI, Galaxy as dated. Live+SD.
NBC: 6.4/11
The Voice 8.7/14, The Night Shift 4.0/7
CBS: 5.2/9
The Big Bang Theory [r] 5.6/9, Mike & Molly 6.0/9, Scorpion [r] 4.8/8, NCIS: Los Angeles [r] 4.5/8
ABC: 4.1/5
The Bachelor: The Women Tell All 5.3/8, Secrets and Lies [r] 2.8/5
FOX 3.5/6 Gotham 3.8/6, The Following 3.2/5
UNIVISION: 1.7/3 Mi Corazon es Tuyo 1.9/3, Hasta Fin del Mundo 1.8/3, Malquerida 1.5/3
ION: 0.8/1 Criminal Minds 0.8/1, Criminal Minds 0.8/1, Criminal Minds 0.8/1
Telemundo: 0.8/1 Los Miserables 0.8/1, Tierra de Reyes 0.7/1, Duenos del Paraiso 0.9/2
CW: 0.5/1 The Originals [r] 0.5/1, Jane the Virgin [r] 0.4/1

Sunday A18-49 Analysis: ABC and FOX tied for the most A18-49 viewers Sunday with 1.7/5, according to final primetime national ratings from Nielsen. CBS’ 60 Minutes won 7p at 1.6/5, followed by ABC’s Once Upon at Time at 1.3/4. ABC took over the lead at 8p with Once Upon A Time at 2.2/6. FOX’s The Simpsons and Brooklyn Nine-Nine placed #2 at a 1.8/5 average. At 9pm, ABC’s Secrets and Lies was #1 at 1.5/4, followed by Univision’s Nuestra Belleza at 1.4/4. ABC’s Secrets and Lies closed at the night on top at 1.5/5, followed by CBS’ Battle Creek and Univision’s Sal y Pimienta, which tied at 1.0/3.

A18-49: ABC 1.7/5, FOX 1.7/5, CBS 1.3/4, NBC 1.1/3, UNI 1.1/3, TELE 0.3/1, ION 0.3/1

Live + Same Day Household Ratings: Sunday, March 1, 2015 time period averages. Source: NTI, Galaxy as dated. Live+SD.
CBS: 6.5/11
60 Minutes 8.2/14, Madam Secretary 7.2/11, The Good Wife 5.7/9, Battle Creek 4.9/9
ABC: 3.4/5 Once Upon A Time 2.6/4, Once Upon A Time 3.8/6, Secrets and Lies 3.9/6
NBC: 2.8/5
The Voice [r] 3.1/5, Dateline 2.5/4
FOX: 2.1/3
The Simpsons [r] 1.5/2, Bob’s Burgers 1.7/3, The Simpsons 2.3/4, Brooklyn Nine-Nine 2.0/3, Last Man on Earth 3.2/5
UNIVISION: 1.5/2 Aqui y Ahora 1.3/2, Nuestra Belleza 1.7/3, Sal y Pimienta 1.4/2
ION: 0.7/1
The Lincoln Lawyer 0.7/1
TELE: 0.4/1
Cine Exclusivo 0.4/1

Saturday A18-49 Analysis: CBS had the most A18-49 viewers Saturday with 0.7/3, according to final primetime national ratings from Nielsen. At 8p, CBS’ Crimetime Saturday, ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live After the Oscars and NBC’s NHL all tied for the top spot at 0.5/2. CBS held on to #1 at 9p with 48 Hours at 0.7/3. Univision’s Sabado Gigante ranked #2 at 0.6/2. CBS gained ground at 10p with 48 Hours at 0.9/3, while Univision’s Sabado Gigante trailed at 0.6/2.

A18-49: CBS 0.7/3, UNI 0.6/2, ABC 0.5/2, NBC 0.5/2, ION 0.4/1, FOX 0.3/1, TELE 0.3/1

Live + Same Day Household Ratings: Saturday, February 28, 2015 time period averages. Source: NTI, Galaxy as dated. Live+SD.
CBS: 3.3/6
Crimetime Saturday [r] 2.8/5, 48 Hours 3.3/6, 48 Hours 3.8/7
ABC: 1.6/3 Jimmy Kimmel Live After the Oscars [r]1.6/3, Shania: Still the One 1.7/3, Forever 1.5/3
ION: 1.0/2 Criminal Minds 0.9/2, Criminal Minds 1.1./2, Criminal Minds 1.0/2, Criminal Minds 0.9/2
FOX 0.9/2 Backstrom [r] 1.0/2, Sleepy Hollow [r] 0.7/1
NBC: 0.8/2 NBC NHL 0.8/21
UNIVISION: 0.7/2 Sabado Gigante 1.1/2
TELE: 0.3/1 Cine Millonario [7p start] 0.3/1, Futbol Estelar 0.2/0


Media industry executive Marc Graboff will join Discovery Communications in April 2015 as President, Global Business & Legal Affairs, Production Management and Studios. Graboff last served as President of CORE Media Group.

RLJ Entertainment, Inc. has promoted Mark Ward to Chief Acquisitions Officer, Feature Films and hired Angela Northington as Senior Vice President Content Acquisitions, UMC.

Andy Clurman has been upped to CEO of Active Interest Media. He was promoted from his role as president, and will retain that title.

This Day in History:
1997 -The first episode of Just Shoot Me aired on NBC.

Answer to Our Last Trivia: What song did Happy Days’ (1974-1984) Richie sing about girls he dated or wanted to date? Blueberry Hill. Kudos to: John Dunn-Source Marketing/Norwalk, CT, Lauren Varga-CoxReps/NYC, Marc Zalinsky-Viacom/NYC, Bob Cook-B.C. Entertainment Group, Inc./Orlando, FL, Lisa Fikeys-Zimmerman/Chicago, IL, Tim Rank-True Media, Maryland Heights, MO/Gretchen Brady-KDAF,Dallas, TX, Judy Margolis-The Ad Place/Dallas, TX, Patti Rodriguez-Corporate Program Coordinator/Portland, OR, Susan Nessanbaum-Goldberg-M and S Entertainment, Inc/LA, Mary Cregan-MEC Media/Los Angeles, Kerri Huyck/Wasco, WA, Caroline A. Godin-One Girl Revolution/Toronto, ON, Canada, Arthur Reinstein-Shaw Media/Toronto, ON, Canada.

Today’s Trivia: What instrument did Ugly Naked Guy play on Friends? (Email trivia@cynopsis.com with 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.).
Keep Watching & Reading,
Lynn Leahey

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

Cynopsis Ad Sales: Mike Farina | VP, Sales | 203-218-6480
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Cynopsis CLASSIFIEDS For More classifieds, visit the Cynopsis.com classifieds page here.

JOB OPENING: DIRECTOR RSCH/DC: Provide rsch expertise on issues relevant to brdcst ind. 8+ yrs of hands-on rsch analysis & reporting exp. Background in brdcst/telecomm. Exp accessing & analyzing Nielsen data and/or SPSS/similar stat analysis sftwr. Resumes: [email protected] (3/11)

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CASTING CALL: Companies can showcase their casting notices/casting calls here. For information on rates and specs for posting a casting notice, please email Trish at [email protected]

EXPERT SERVICES ADS: These ads are for companies or people who offer an expertise in the field of media by way of production, voice over artistry, writing, set development, etc. For information on rates and specs for posting an Expertise Service ad email Trish at [email protected]

INTERNSHIPS – These positions are for credit only – nobody gets paid here. These ads are always posted for free, and students work for school credit only. For more information on the specs for posting an Internship ad, email Trish at [email protected].

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E-mail [email protected] or call Trish Pihonak at 203-899-8459 for rates and specs for Job Openings.

Are you looking for a job? Post your Situation Wanted Ad here — Email [email protected] for specs.


ABC: The Middle, The Goldbergs, Modern Family, black-ish, Nashville
CBS: Survivor, Criminal Minds, CSI: Cyber [
CW: Arrow , The 100
Fox: American Idol, Empire
NBC: The Voice, Chicago PD [r]
PBS: Nature [r], NOVA [r], To Catch A Comet [r]
Telemundo: Los Miserables, Tierra de Reyes, Duenos del Paraiso
Univision: Mi Corazon Es Tuyo, Hasta el Fin del Mundo,
Que te Perdone Dios… Yo No

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