04/22/22: CNN+ shutting down

Cynopsis Medias First Morning Read
Friday April 22, 2022

Today’s Premieres
Apple TV+: The Long Game: Bigger Than Basketball; They Call Me Magic
HBO Max: A Tiny Audience
IMDb TV: Pretty Hard Cases
Netflix: Heartstopper; Hold Tight; Selling Sunset; The Seven Lives of Lea
Prime Video: A Very British Scandal

Today’s Finales
Apple TV+: WeCrashed
VH1: RuPaul’s Drag Race at 8p

Saturday’s Premieres
Estrella TV: Tu-Night Con Omar Chaparro at 9p
Rakuten: Shooting Stars
TNT: Rich & Shameless at 7p

Sunday’s Premieres
Adult Swim: Three Busy Debras at midnight
BBC America: The North Water at 10p
Food Network: Duff: Ace of Taste at 12p; Worst Cooks in America at 9p; Inside Eats With Rhett & Link at 10:30p
HBO: Barry at 10p; The Baby at 10:30p
HGTV: Home Town Kickstart at 8p
HLN: Sex & Murder at 10p
Showtime: The Man Who Fell to Earth at 10p
Starz: Gaslit at 8p
Very Local: Rob Does Beantown

Sunday’s Finales
Epix: From at 9p
PBS: Sandition on Masterpiece at 9p, Before We Die at 10p
TV One: Unsung at 9p, Uncensored at 10p

IN THE NEWS

CNN+ will shut down on April 30, one month after its launch and thirteen days after the merger of WarnerMedia and Discovery. “As we become Warner Bros. Discovery, CNN will be strongest as part of WBD’s streaming strategy which envisions news as an important part of a compelling broader offering along with sports, entertainment, and nonfiction content,” said Chris Licht, Chairman and CEO of CNN Worldwide. “We have therefore made the decision to cease operations of CNN+ and focus our investment on CNN’s core news-gathering operations and in further building CNN Digital.” Andrew Morse, EVP, Chief Digital Officer of CNN Worldwide and Head of CNN+, has decided to leave the company after a transition period; Alex MacCallum, CNN Worldwide, Head of Product/General Manager CNN+ will step in to lead CNN Digital.

Licht notified CNN+ employees of the shutdown in a meeting on Thursday, saying it was a “uniquely sh***y” situation,” and “it was not your fault you had the rug pulled out from underneath you.” CNN+ employees will continue to be paid and receive benefits for the next 90 days to explore opportunities at Warner Bros. Discovery, and staffers who aren’t absorbed elsewhere will receive a minimum of six months’ severance, said Licht in an internal memo.

“In a complex streaming market, consumers want simplicity and an all-in service which provides a better experience and more value than stand-alone offerings, and, for the company, a more sustainable business model to drive our future investments in great journalism and storytelling,” said J.B. Perrette, head of Discovery streaming in a statement. During the town hall meeting, Perrette expressed frustration that “prior leadership decided to just keep going” with the launch of CNN+ despite the impending merger.

National TV still has the broadest reach for news and entertainment, according to Comscore’s latest TV Trends report, which analyzes 2021 TV consumption. But while sports TV viewership on broadcast channels reached new heights in 2021, returning to pre-pandemic levels (NBC +29.89%, CBS +12.72%, FOX +10.98%), broadcast news networks saw a significant drop in viewership in 2021, post-2020 election (Fox -25.46%, CBS -10.6%, ABC -10.56%). As for TV trends to watch out for, the report suggests nostalgia is here to stay; the home renovation craze “will continue to build”; and broadcast TV will “continue to be a significant piece of an effective advertising strategy for the forseeable future.”

US homes accessing over-the-air TV content via an antenna grew to 18.6 million in 1Q21 (or 15.3% of households), up from 18.4 million (14.3% of households) the year prior, according to Nielsen. People in homes that combine OTA viewing with at least one streaming service have an average age of 45, 40% have children, and the median income is $49,000. In the homes that have OTA and a vMVPD, the average age is 49, 35% have children and the median household income is $77,000. In homes that go over-the-air but don’t stream, people have an average age of 61, 13% have children and their median income is $22,800.

HBO and HBO Max added 3 million subscribers in 1Q22, their last quarter under the AT&T umbrella. WarnerMedia revenue for the quarter was $8.7 billion, up 2.5% versus 1Q21, thanks in part to a 4.4% rise in subscription revenues. WarnerMedia is now part of Warner Bros. Discovery.

NeNe Leakes is suing NBCUniversal, Bravo and other companies and executives related to her former show, “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” alleging they “foster a corporate and workplace culture in which racially-insensitive and inappropriate behavior is tolerated – if not, encouraged.” In the suit, Leakes claims she complained to executives overseeing the show about racist remarks by castmate Kim Zolciak-Biermann, complaints that led in part to Leakes being forced off the show in 2020. The suit seeks monetary damages to be determined at trial.

CBS’ “The Late Show” was canceled yesterday after host Stephen Colbert tested positive for Covid-19. “Basically I’m feeling fine – grateful to be vaxxed and boosted,” tweeted Colbert. “This just proves that I will do anything to avoid interviewing Jason Bateman.” New episodes are slated to return May 2; repeats had already been planned for next week, when the show is on hiatus.

On Thursday, FOX News Channel’s Sean Hannity became the longest-running primetime cable news host in television history, breaking the record of the late Larry King. Hannity has been part of FNC’s primetime lineup since the launch of the network in 1996.

The Explorers Club and Discovery announced an expanded partnership with the new series, “Tales from the Explorers Club,” and a commitment to diversity with “The Explorers Club 50: Fifty People Changing the World that the World Needs to Know About.” The Explorers Club Discovery Expedition Grants is entering its second year with a commitment to advance and showcase new expeditions, research, and scientific achievements.

CYNOPSIS SPORTS CMO EXCHANGE

Tuesday, May 24, 2022, 1:00pm ET

Join senior executives for an afternoon of marketing-related sessions and panel discussions. 15 renowned marketers are already confirmed to speak from companies like MLS, WNBA, NASCAR, UFC, FanDuel and NBCUniversal.

Register free now

PRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT

AMC Networks has greenlit a “Straight Man,” a one-hour comedic drama starring Bob Odenkirk (“Better Call Saul”), with partners Sony Pictures’ Television TriStar TV and Gran Via. The project was announced as being in fast-track development earlier this month in advance of AMC Networks’ upfront event in NYC. Aaron Zelman and Paul Lieberstein, who adapted the project from the novel of the same name by Richard Russo, will serve as co-showrunners.

Bowie State University has signed on as a premier sponsor for two original Maryland Public Television PBS documentaries: “Harriet Tubman: Visions of Freedom” and “Becoming Frederick Douglass.” Created by filmmaker Stanley Nelson, the two films are co-productions of Firelight Film and MPT with an appropriation from the State of Maryland. Bowie State is the first historically Black university to sponsor PBS docs. The one-hour documentaries will premiere on PBS stations in October 2022.

MTV’s 2022 Video Music Awards show is coming back to New Jersey, airing live from Prudential Center on Sunday, August 28. “Our 2019 show in Newark was undoubtedly one of our biggest and most successful shows yet and we’re excited to bring back the incredible fan energy for one of music’s most anticipated and iconic nights,” said Bruce Gillmer, President of Music, Music Talent, Programming & Events, Paramount and Chief Content Officer, Music, Paramount+.

SeeHer is spearheading an ongoing proprietary study which correlates the accurate portrayal of women, measured through the global gender equality measurement (GEM®), with direct impact on sales return. “Women power the economy through leading in spending and in influence of all household purchases, but economic equality has yet to be reached between women and men,” notes Jennifer Pelino, EVP of Global Media Solutions, IRI Worldwide, adding, “If equality was reached, then $28 trillion could be added to the world’s economy!”. For more on the study’s findings, go to Cynsiders.

Nine series regular roles have been cast on Netflix’s untitled Arnold Schwarzenegger spy series: Travis Van Winkle (“You”), Gabriel Luna (“Terminator: Dark Fate”), Fortune Feimster (“The Mindy Project”), Jay Baruchel (“This Is the End”), Milan Carter (“Warped!”), Fabiana Udenio (“Jane the Virgin”), Barbara Eve Harris (“Station 19”), Aparna Brielle (“A.P. Bio”), and Andy Buckley (“The Office”).

Also casting up is Freeform anthology series “Cruel Summer” for season two. Onboard are Sadie Stanley (“The Goldbergs”), Griffin Gluck (“Locke & Key”), Kadee Strickland (“Private Practice”), Lisa Yamada (“Little Fires Everywhere”), Sean Blakemore (“Greenleaf”), and Paul Adelstein (“True Story”).

NEW & RETURNING SERIES

The underworld of underwear is explored in “Victoria’s Secret: Angels and Demons,” premiering on Hulu Saturday, June 14. The three-part expose follows the fall of the lingerie brand.

HBO drama series “The Time Traveler’s Wife” debuts Sunday, May 15 on HBO. The love story, adapted by Steven Moffat from the novel by Audrey Niffenegger and directed by David Nutter, tells the story of a marriage with a time travel problem.

History’s “Alone” returns for season nine on Thursday, May 26 at 9p, with survivalists dropped off on the shores of Labrador, Canada – home of the polar bear. Season two of “Kings of Pain” kicks off the same night at 10:30.

HBO Max docuseries “Menudo: Forever Young,” from filmmakers Angel Manuel Soto (“Charm City Kings”) and Kristofer Ríos (“Havana Skate Days”), debuts with all episodes on Thursday, June 23. The doc follows the rise and fall of the Latin American boy band.

“The Great Soul Food Cook-Off” premieres Friday, May 6 at 10p on OWN. The competition series celebrates Black chefs and Black culinary traditions.

In new discovery+ series “Hungry for Answers,” food expert Caroline Randall Williams travels the country uncovering fascinating, often untold Black stories behind some of America’s classic food and spirits. All four episodes of the series will be available to stream beginning Wednesday, June 8.

New FX drama “The Old Man,” starring Jeff Bridges as a man who absconded from the CIA decades ago and is now hunted by an assassin, premieres Thursday, June 16 at 10p.

“Becoming Elizabeth,” recounting the early life of the Tudor queen, debuts Sunday, June 12 at 9p.

Lifetime is launching Life & Crime Mondays, starting with “#TextMeWhenYouGetHome” at 9p and “Sleeping With a Killer” at 10p on June 6, and “Phrogging: Hider in My House” and “Meet Marry Murder” arriving later this summer. Why the turn to crime? “Our Ripped from the Headlines movies have really struck a chord with our audiences,” said Amy Winter, EVP and Head of Programming, Lifetime and LMN. “Lifetime is the perfect home for these cautionary, fascinating, and stranger-than-fiction programs.”

COMING UP

SeriesFest unveiled new additions to its previously announced Season 8 lineup taking place May 5 -11 in Denver. Among the new events are a screenings and panels of new Starz series “Gaslit” and truTV’s “101 Places to Party Before You Die.”

Carl Jackson Motion Pictures and CJC Cinema are releasing musical drama “Immortal Soul” in select theaters and on Fox’s Tubi on Friday April 22. The movie follows a couple who are forced to build a relationship supernaturally.

Whoopi Goldberg, William Shatner, Amy Poehler, Alex Kurtzman, Maury Povich, Warner Bros. Television Group Chairman Channing Dungey and producer Jeff Sagansky will be honored with NATPE’s 2022 Tartikoff Legacy Awards, given out June 2 at a gala at the Beverly Wilshire. Previously the celebration took place during the NATPE Miami Marketplace.

TECH TALK

Snap’s first quarter results “reflect the underlying momentum in our business through a challenging operating environment,” said CEO Evan Spiegel. Revenue increased 38% to $1,063 million, compared to the prior year, but net loss was $360 million, versus $287 million the year prior. The Snap community grew 18% year-over-year, to reach 332 million. “We remain focused on providing value for our growing community, delivering ROI for our advertising partners, and investing against our enormous opportunity in augmented reality,” said Spiegel.

Fidelity Investments became the first leading brokerage firm to offer an educational metaverse experience with the opening of The Fidelity Stack, built in Decentraland, featuring a multi-level design complete with a lobby, dance floor, and rooftop sky garden for users to explore on foot – or through teleport. In the Invest Quest at The Fidelity Stack, users are challenged to traverse the building learning the basics of ETF investing while gathering “orbs” along the way. “Fidelity is constantly innovating as we re-imagine what it looks like to engage with customers as a trusted financial services company in the future,” said Kathryn Condon, Head of Marketing Channels and Emerging Platforms at Fidelity. “As Web 3.0 takes shape, Fidelity is excited to bring our expertise in financial education to this new virtual space.”

ID5, the identity solution provider, announced that it is the first identity provider in the industry to receive certification from Neutronian. “Our certification from Neutronian is a strong, third-party endorsement of our capabilities and further validates our mission to provide an efficient and comprehensive identity solution that supports the entire ecosystem while keeping users’ consent at the forefront,” said Mathieu Roche, Co-founder and CEO, ID5. “Now, we can demonstrate to all industry players that we have a deep commitment to a high-quality, transparent, and privacy-first identity framework.”

CTV ad platform tvScientific has raised $20 million in Series A funding in a round led by Norwest Venture Partners, with participation from strategic partners NBCUniversal and Hearst Ventures. “Advertisers have always coveted the reach and engagement of television, but the medium’s immeasurability has made it inaccessible to all but the biggest brands,” said Jason Fairchild, Co-founder and CEO of tvScientific. “We’ve unlocked the awesome power of television for all types of advertisers by simplifying and automating CTV buying and optimization while leveraging massive data to prove the value of TV advertising.”

STREAMING

Allen Media Group’s Local Now has partnered with The Las Vegas Review-Journal, to introduce two new channels to the Local Now platform: “7@7” and “RJ Sports”. “Free-streaming local news is what Local Now does best, and the addition of these two local channels from the Las Vegas Review-Journal strengthens our local coverage in Las Vegas and its surrounding communities,” said Byron Allen, Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Allen Media Group, parent company of Local Now.

UPFRONT CALENDAR

April 25: Disney Storyteller’s Showcase (invite-only)
April 26: FETV (Empire State Building, NYC)
May 2-6: IAB NewFronts
May 2: NBCUniversal/Peacock NewFront
May 3: Samsung Ads at 9a (Samsung 837, NYC); Roku at 11:30a (Caldwell Factory, NYC)
May 4: Digitas at 9:25a; Blavity at 9:50a; Revolt Media at 10:05a; Black Enterprise at 10:25a; Diversity in the Creator Community at 10:40a; TikTok at 4:30p; Twitter at 6p (Pier 17)
May 5: A+E Networks at 9a; Nielsen at 9:20a; fuboTV at 9:30; Dotdash Meredith at 9:50a; Comscore at 10:10a; LG Ads at 10:20; Innovid at 10:55a; GSTS at 11:05a; Crackle Plus at 11:25a; Estrella Media at 12:45p; Vevo at 4:30p (Hammerstein Ballroom), Canela Media at 1p (virtual) and CincoDeFront at 5:30p (NYC)
May 16: NBCUniversal (Radio City Music Hall, NYC); Telemundo (Ziegfeld Theater, NYC); Fox (Skylight, NYC)
May 17: Disney (Basketball City at Pier 36, NYC); YouTube Brandcast at 8p; Univision (Javits Center in NYC)
May 18: Paramount (Carnegie Hall, NYC); Warner Bros. Discovery (Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden, NYC)
May 19: The CW (New York City Center Theater, NYC)

GOING GLOBAL

BritBox International will launch in Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland on April 28 with thousands of hours of viewing available. New titles will launch exclusively every month.

Nordisk Film TV Norway has landed the first international deal for entertainment format “Drag Me Out,” which will air on discovery+ and TVNorge. In the series created by Mastiff TV Denmark, celebrities are welcomed into the world of drag.

All3Media International has inked a new distribution partnership with PBS Distribution, as PBS Distribution boards West Road Pictures’ “Ridley” as the distribution partner in North America. Presales for the new detective drama have also been signed in Europe, China, Australia and New Zealand.

Seasons 1 and 2 of “The Pandavas,” new Indian co-production, premieres on POGO April 23, with new episodes every weekend. Inspired by local legends and mythological tales, the childhood of the Pandava brothers is retold and brought to life.

MEASUREMENT & DATA CONFERENCE

June 7, 2022, Edison Ballroom, NYC

There’s still time to book your seat at this renowned conference. Get the tools you need to effectively take on today’s cross platform challenges. Join us!

BOOK MY SPOT

RATINGS

Broadcast Nielsen Ratings for Wednesday, April 20
Show, P2+ 000s, (A18-49)
ABC: The Goldbergs 2.97 (0.5), The Wonder Years 1.88 (0.3), The Conners 1.87 (0.3), Home Economics 1.71 (0.3), A Million Little Things 1.81 (0.3)
CBS: Survivor 5.43 (0.9), Beyond the Edge 2.21 (0.3), Good Sam 1.74 (0.2)
CW: Freddie Mercury: Final Act 0.89 (0.1)
FOX: The Masked Singer 3.83 (0.6), Domino Masters 1.56 (0.3)
NBC: Chicago Med 6.66 (0.7), Chicago Fire 7.21 (0.8), Chicago PD 6.08 (0.7)
Telemundo: Exatlon 0.15 (0.3), Hercal: Amor y Venganza 1.24 (0.3), Pasion de Gavilanes 0.88 (0.3)
Univision: Rosa de Guadalupe 1.43 (0.5), Mi Fortuna es Amarte 1.55 (0.5), LIGA MX 0.91 (0.4)
Source: Nielsen live + same day time period averages

EXECUTIVE MOVES

Benoit Skinazi has been promoted to Chief Marketing Officer of Sharethrough. Previously, Skinazi was SVP of Marketing & Communication.

Vibrant Media has appointed Brandon Rea as Vice President of Sales, and Austin Light as Ad Operations Manager.

David H. Wright III has been promoted to SVP, Casting and Talent Relations, Disney Television Animation. Wright joined Disney in 1997.

Pepe Garza has been tapped by Estrella Media to serve as Head of Content Development and A&R For Music Division and Executive Producer for Digital Audio. Garza will also continue in his role as a judge for EstrellaTV series “Tengo Talento, Mucho Talento,” as well as Executive Producer of Estrella Media’s Regional Mexican music awards show, “Premios de la Radio.”

IN MEMORIAM

Actor Robert Morse died April 20. He was 90. A celebrated Broadway performer, Morse was also nominated for an Emmy five times for his role on “Mad Men,” and won for “Tru.”

A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE FROM NAB SHOW
 

This Day in History
1993 – The Holocaust Memorial Museum was dedicated in Washington, D.C.

Friday Fun Fact
No number before 1,000 contains the letter A.

Answer to Our Last Trivia Question
Which TV character kept drawings by her sister’s killer on her refrigerator? Detective Sonya Cross, on “The Bridge” (2013-14). Kudos to: Charles Lore/NYC; Susan Nessanbaum-Goldberg-M and S Entertainment/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank

Today’s Trivia Question
Which sitcom featured Alfre Woodard and Bill Maher as series regulars? (Email trivia@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone. Unofficial rules: a limit of four answers per time zone.)

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FRIDAY APRIL 22
ABC: NBA Countdown, NBA Basketball
CBS: Come Dance with Me, Bluebloods
CW: 2040
FOX: WWE Friday Night Smackdown
NBC: The Blacklist, Dateline NBC
PBS: Washington Week, Firing Line With Margaret Hoover, Great Performances, The Trick
Telemundo: Exatlon Estados Unidos, Hercal: Amor y Venganza, Pasion de Gavilanes
Univision: Soltero Con Hijas, Mi Fortuna es Amarte, Madre

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05/18/22: Cynopsis Jobs

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SE ADVERTISING MGR TODAY’S HOMEOWNER MEDIA REMOTE Develops custom advertising solutions for current/new clients by integrating media assets and platforms to drive results & generate revenue for the brand. Direct sales exp, 7+ yrs. Home improvement, digital &TV exp a plus. Full info HERE *** Wednesday May 18, 2022 ONLY 2 WEEKS […]

Cynopsis Presents: A New Chapter for Warner Bros. Discovery

A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE FROM WARNER BROS. DISCOVERY   Tuesday May 17, 2022 With Sports, Streaming and New Ad Products, Warner Bros. Discovery Has a Seat at the Winners’ Table Cathy Applefeld Olson Newly merged and ready for deal-making, Warner Bros. Discovery is heading into the Upfront market with a show-stopping statistic: During March […]

05/17/22: Apple TV+ gets cute with “Eva the Owlet”

A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE FROM A+E NETWORKS TV IS EVERYWHERE. IS YOUR MESSAGE EVERYWHERE TOO? Grab the Attention, Eyes and Ears of Your Consumers on All Ad-Supported Platforms It’s TV…EVERYWHERE. For Everyone. A+E Networks LINEAR | DIGITAL | SOCIAL | CTV | AUDIO Tuesday May 17, 2022 Today’s Premieres BET: Carl Weber’s Family Business at 9p […]

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