05/05/21: Yamiche Alcindor named the new moderator of “Washington Week”





A18-49 performance bucked industry trends, with a +30 point delta over industry norms.
20% audience growth in A25-54.

The 3rd season of VICE TV’s top performing show of all time, Dark Side of the Ring, returns, Thursdays at 9pm. Watch the #1 non-fiction series on networks in less than 70 million homes, as well as its spinoff franchises, Dark Side Of Football and Dark Side of the ’90s.

Cynopsis Medias First Morning Read


Wednesday May 5, 2021

Today’s Premieres
CBS: “Kids Say the Darndest Things” at 8p
Comedy Central: “Crank Yankers” at 10:30p
Netflix: “The Sons of Sam: A Descent into Darkness”
PBS: “Human: The World Within” at 9p

Today’s Finale
TLC: “My 600-Lb. Life” at 8p


Sinclair Broadcast Group is expanding its morning news program, “The National Desk,” to evenings. “We have received exceedingly positive feedback that frequently cites the remarkable, unique value of ‘The National Desk’,” said Chris Ripley, President and CEO of Sinclair. “Going beyond reporting the news, ‘The National Desk’ offers audiences firsthand coverage that is not always available online or on the national level, and we have found that people are eager for this content.” The program, available on 68 of Sinclair’s stations, will run from 10p-midnight ET starting September 27.

Yamiche Alcindor has been named the new moderator of PBS news analysis series “Washington Week,” effective Friday, May 7. Alcindor will continue to serve as “PBS NewsHour” White House correspondent. She is also a political contributor for NBC News and MSNBC. Alcindor will be the ninth moderator in “Washington Week”’s 54-year history, following Washington Post political reporter Robert Costa, who held the position from 2017 to 2021, and Gwen Ifill, who moderated the program from 1999 until her death in 2016.

CTV ad spend grew 22% year-over-year in 2020, according to IAB’s “Video Ad Spend 2020 and Outlook 2021” report. Seventy-three percent of CTV buyers report shifting budget from broadcast and cable to CTV in 2021. Advertisers, on average, spent $20M on CTV in 2020, and 35% of buyers expect to increase CTV video ad spending in 2021. “This is a bellwether moment in media that reflects the continued acceleration and shift to digital,” said Eric John, VP of IAB Media Center. “While we are seeing growth across all digital video, the movement to more audience-based buying approaches has resulted in increased buyer demand for CTV.”

Havas Media Group announced the launch of Meaningful Marketplaces, a way to invest in news sources and minority-owned and operated media that provides engaging media curated “by humans and never machines.” Meaningful Marketplaces offer a reduction in sell-side fees for media partners, giving them a greater share of investment and opportunity to invest in content and creators. Advertisers have a guaranteed brand safe environment, and transparent costs. “Meaningful Media has never been more important. To thrive, it needs an equitable and self-sustaining ecosystem,” said James Gyngell, Global Managing Director of Partnerships at Havas Media Group. “We developed Meaningful Marketplaces to function as that ecosystem. Meaningful Marketplaces is launching with MediaMath, Pubmatic, and Magnite.

Interpublic Group has invested in Creative Studio CONVICTS, helping premium brands develop and distribute culturally innovative content. The CONVICTS partnership will be activated through Mediabrands Content Studio, the media and marketing solutions division of Interpublic Group. “We believe that brands need to be having conversations ahead of culture. Being connected to culture-creators is paramount in activating the insights we glean from our data,” said Brendan Gaul, Global Chief Content Officer, Mediabrands. “After the last year of intense societal and political change and a global health pandemic, brands know they need to go beyond routine marketing messages and join consumers where their true passions and core beliefs are to win.”

TBS’ “Conan” will air its final episode Thursday, June 24. The last weeks of shows will include special guests as well as an hour-long finale with a look back on the past 11 years of the late-nighter. Conan O’Brien won’t languish for long – he has a deal with TBS parent WarnerMedia to develop a new show for HBO Max, described as a departure from the traditional talk-show format.

Netflix canceled “The Irregulars” after one season. The detective drama, based on the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, premiered in March.

YouTube comedy series “Liza on Demand” will end after its upcoming third season. It’s YouTube’s last original scripted series, as the site focuses on unscripted content.

If you’re wondering what the future of the media Upfronts looks like one year into the pandemic, you’re not alone. Cynopsis is sharing the results of our survey of media & production executions on their expectation and insights on the upfronts market. See the essential findings & download the full report here.

Measurement & Data Virtual Conference
Using a Standard Unit of Measure to Pave the Way to Convergence
To establish a level playing field for convergence, the media advertising industry must deploy a standard unit of measurement across revenue platforms. Listen in on Wednesday, June 16 as the Media Ad Sales Council discusses the crux of impressions-based buying & selling from both a challenges and opportunities perspective and the necessary next steps to make its implementation a reality.




Discovery+ handed a straight-to-series order to true crime anthology series “Confessions of a Crime Queen,” a mash-up of scripted and documentary genres from Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and his G-Unit Film and Television, Rich Bye and Goodbye Pictures, and Lionsgate Television. “As G-Unit Film & Television continues its rapid growth, we have to think outside the box and challenge ourselves to tell entertaining and important stories in new ways,” said Jackson. “With the support of discovery+, our friends at Lionsgate TV and in partnership with top producer, Rich Bye and Goodbye Pictures, we have the right team to help us continue pushing the creative envelope.”

In development at the Discovery streamer is a mini-series adaptation of Girls with Bright Futures, a novel about the cutthroat world of college admissions. The project comes from John Goldwyn (“Manhunt: Unabomber”) and Karen Rosenfelt (“Twilight”).

“Big Sky” was renewed for a second season by ABC. Executive producer Elwood Reid will take the showrunner reins from series creator David E. Kelley. 20th Television produces in association with A+E Studios.

HGTV greenlit “Curb Appeal” spin-off “Curb Appeal Xtreme,” following dramatic overhauls of the front and backyards of homes in Nashville, Tennessee, with outdoor living spaces that include features such as game rooms and open-air kitchens. The series is slated for late summer 2021.

NBC ordered a pilot for a sequel to its 1984-92 comedy “Night Court.” Melissa Rauch (“The Big Bang Theory”) is executive producing as well as starring as the daughter of the late judge Harry Stone, with John Larroquette reprising his role as Dan Fielding. “My intention was purely to be behind the camera on this project, but my plans quickly changed after falling in love with the incredible script from the brilliant mind of Dan Rubin,” said Rauch. “I couldn’t be more thrilled to join forces with Dan, the immense talent that is John Larroquette, and the two powerhouse institutions of comedy that are NBC and Warner Bros. to bring Night Court back to television.”

Epix pulled the trigger on Billy the Kid, a romantic adventure based on the life of the America outlaw, written by Michael Hirst (“Vikings”) and executive produced by Michael Hirst, Donald De Line (De Line Pictures), Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey (Amblin Television), and Otto Bathurst and Toby Leslie (One Big Picture). The greenlit eight-parter is a co-production between Epix Studios and MGM International Television Productions, in association with Nordic Entertainment Groups streaming service Viaplay.

“Big Man on Campus,” a docu-series focused on basketball phenom Makur Maker as he navigates the highs and lows of his freshman year college experience against the backdrop of the Black Lives Matter movement and the global pandemic, landed an order from Apple TV+. The series is directed and executive produced by Seth Gordon (“Undefeated”), and will be produced for Apple by Exhibit A, Boardwalk Pictures and Sony Pictures Television.

Casting notes: Harold Perrineau (“Lost”) will star in Epix sci-fi drama “From.”…Jamie Lyn Spears, Dion Johnstone and Brandon Quinn have been upped to series regulars for the second season of Netflix’s “Sweet Magnolias.” The romance drama is slated to return in 2022…Rosemarie DeWitt (“Little Fires Everywhere”) has joined the cast of HBO Max limited drama “The Staircase.”

The Early Bird Deadline for Cynopsis’ Top Women in Media Nominations is tomorrow! Get your nominations in for the women who lead the way in your org. We want to honor your On-Air Talent, Data & Research Trendsetters, Social Media Groundbreakers, and Marketing Trailblazers. Check out all the categories and get started here.


At YouTube’s 10th annual NewFront event, emceed by Hasan Minhaj, the company announced it has expanded itsYouTube Select sponsorships to include cultural moments, like Mother’s Day, Summer Music, Black History Month & Pride, plus exclusive content like the NFL’s Game Day All Access, returning for a third season this fall. YouTube CTV ads will include interactive features like brand extensions, inviting viewers to learn more about a product without interrupting their viewing experience. Brands will be able to measure conversions generated by brand extensions directly in Google Ads.

Among new originals are docu-series “Ice Cold,” exploring issues of racial inequality through the prism of hip-hop jewelry; “Recipe for Change” (wt), bringing Asian storytellers together to celebrate API culture; unscripted series “Best Shape of My Life” (wt), following Will Smith’s journey to better fitness; and docu-series “Noted,” focused on Alicia Keys.

During its first NewFronts presentation, TEGNA announced the expansion of its attribution solution to measure performance of linear TV and streaming campaigns. In 2021, TEGNA Attribution will provide industry-specific performance data for the automotive and tourism industries. Advertisers in these categories will have access to advanced, industry-specific outcomes and sales data for campaigns placed with TEGNA and Premion. TEGNA Attribution is partnering with IHS Markit to leverage Polk Automotive Solutions, enabling advertisers to reach the most qualified automotive consumers and connect advertising schedule details to verified new car sales. TEGNA Attribution is also partnering with Arrivalist, using Arrivalist’s geo-location intelligence data to provide advanced location attribution solutions for convention and visitors bureaus and other vacation/tourism advertisers.

“These new attribution offerings allow automotive and tourism clients to advertise with TEGNA and Premion with greater confidence, knowing we deliver proven results and unmatched measurement insights,” said Tim Fagan, SVP and Chief Revenue Officer, TEGNA.

Condé Nast announced a video programming slate for the 2021-22 season that includes 75 returning originals as well as 50 digital video pilots in production across 17 brand channels, including Vogue’s expansion into wellness, GQ Sports’ 2022 Super Bowl lineup, and Vanity Fair’s expansion into audio. “Last year we announced the launch of the Condé Nast Influence Network, our alternative to traditional broadcast and cable networks, showcasing our unmatched ability to create video content that resonates with consumers and drives the cultural conversation,” said Pam Drucker Mann, Global Chief Revenue Officer and President, US Revenue. “This year, we’re building on that influence by creating more engaging, interactive experiences for our audiences and distributing them across new channels — connecting with 10.3 million viewers that aren’t reachable on broadcast and cable.”

The company also announced the launch of Condé Nast Shoppable, which builds buyable content directly into its series. Shoppable series include Vogue’s “7 Days 7 Looks” and “Beauty Secrets” and GQ’s “Grooming Gods,” each of which will give viewers the ability to instantly purchase the products showcased by celebrities, models and influencers.


TLC’s “sMothered” returns for a new season on a new night, Monday, May 31 at 9p. The reality show follows six extremely devoted mother/daughter duos.

HBO talk show “Pause with Sam Jay” makes its debut Friday, May 21 at 9p. Created by Sam Jay (“Sam Jay: 3 in the Morning”) and Prentice Penny (“Insecure”), the series explores cultural issues.

Season three of hunting series “The Maverick” premieres on Sportsman Channel on Sunday, June 27 at 8p.

Headed for a sophomore run is MTV’s “Teen Code,” starting Tuesday, May 4 on Snapchat. The series is an extension of MTV’s “Girl Code” and “Guy Code” franchise.


The AFI Life Achievement Award Gala Tribute honoring Julie Andrews has been scheduled for November 11 in Hollywood. First slated to take place in April 2020, the event was postponed due to the pandemic. The special will air on TNT at a date to be announced.

Because of the pandemic, the traditional live Memorial Day concert on the West Lawn of the US Capitol will not be held, but a pre-taped special, “National Memorial Day Concert,” will air Sunday, May 30 on PBS. Hosted by Joe Mangenga and Gary Sinese, the show will feature performances and tributes from Washington, D.C. and around the country honoring American heroes.

Honorees for this year’s Urban One Honors, which celebrates the accomplishments of African American women, include Stacey Abrams; reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones; Dr. Ala Stanford, founder of The Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium; CEO of Walgreens Boots Alliance Rosalind Brewer; President and CEO of Martha’s Table, Kim R. Ford; and civic entrepreneur Robin Rue Simmons. The show airs on TV One on Sunday, May 16, at 9p, and will be simulcast for the first time on sister network CLEO TV.


Twitter is acquiring Scroll, an ad-free subscription service for news. “This is an exciting opportunity for us to introduce this proven model to publishers on our service and make reading the news better for everyone involved,” said Mike Park, Twitter’s VP Product, in a blog post. “Looking ahead, Scroll will become a meaningful addition to our subscriptions work as we build and shape a future subscription service on Twitter.” Twitter is taking on the entire 13-strong Scroll team.

Location-based digital network Captivate is launching a Small Business Spotlight series, donating up to $1 million in advertising inventory plus editorial coverage for qualifying small businesses in the US. Throughout the month of May (Small Business Month), local businesses can submit their story and ad for the opportunity to be featured on Captivate within three business days.


Amazon now has 120 million monthly viewers on OTT between Amazon live sports, Fire TV, Twitch and IMBd TV, according to Mediaocean, with 60% of viewers A18-49. The advertising business is growing 77% in Q1, with $7B in revenue, per data points about Amazon as an ad platform.

VIZIO has added 10 lifestyle channels to SmartCast, its smart TV operating system. The free channels include PeopleTV, QVC, HSN, Jack Hanna, Love Nature, Real Wild, Fuse Sweat, Absolute History, Revry and Horse & Country.

INSP has launched on HD to Xfinity X1 customers. “INSP has enjoyed a great partnership with Xfinity over the years through the carriage of our SD channel,” said Mark Kang, SVP of Worldwide Distribution for INSP. “They have always embraced our brand of wholesome, Western and Western-adjacent programming.”

A diverse group of celebs are backing Bright, a new video platform for live conversation and learning co-founded by Guy Oseary and Ashton Kutcher’s Sound Ventures. Madonna, Naomi Campbell, Shawn Mendes, Amy Schumer, D-Nice, Laura Dern, Judd Apatow, Deepak Chopra, Diplo, and “Property Brothers” Drew and Jonathan Scott are among the 200+ stars onboard to help participants “level up” their lives.

Poker industry veteran Mori Eskandi was appointed of President of PokerGo in February. While he faced pandemic challenges over the past months, he sees a bright future for sports streaming. Find out why he thinks it’s such a good bet, in Cynsiders.

FilmRise, the New York-based film and television studio and streaming network set to launch the FilmRise Classic TV Channel and App, has licensed “The Dick Van Dyke Show,” “That Girl,” and “The Danny Thomas Show.” The deal between FilmRise and Paul Brownstein Productions gives FilmRise global TV and digital rights to the classic comedies.


Prime Focus Technologies announced the launch of a new hybrid-cloud media center in Leeds, UK. PFT Leeds will provide Channel 4’s operations, including receipt and delivery of content, quality control, edit & remastering, archiving, live simulcast of linear channels and transcoding, along with packaging and delivery of non-linear services.

Reshet has ordered a new version of game show, “The Money Drop,” from Endemol Shine Israel, after a decade off-air. Originally created by Remarkable Television, the format has been adapted in over 53 territories to date.

Red Arrow Studios International and Japanese commercial broadcaster TV Asahi struck a new partnership to co-develop new entertainment formats for the international market. First up: game show “Crazy Elevator,” in which players try to reach the top of a tower to claim a prize.

Portfolio Entertainment’s STEM-based show “Addison” will be heading to new territories, including Kidstream for the US, PCCW for Hong Kong and A+ Kids for France and Africa.

An online asset for media execs looking for the latest in tech, streaming, network offerings, and tools to support their business initiatives.




NBC’s broadcast of the Kentucky Derby on May 1 delivered an audience of 14.4 million, up 53% from last year’s attendee-less race and down 12% from 2019.

Many syndicated daytime shows – especially those cleared on network stations – lost all or part of their primary runs on April 19 and 20 due to live news coverage of the Derek Chauvin trial in the week ending April 25. One notable exception: “Live with Kelly and Ryan” (four-week high 1.8 Live+SD national Nielsen rating, up 6% from the week before), which opened up a wide lead among talkers. “Live” had been tied at the top for the previous three weeks. A very heavily preempted “Dr. Phil” (1.4, down 18%) took second. Ratings for all the other talk shows fell below the 1.0 level.

Broadcast Nielsen Top 10 M-F Syndicated Strip Series for the week of April 19 ranked in order by HH Rtg
“Family Feud” (CMV) 5.5 AA
“Jeopardy!” (CMV) 5.1 AA
“Wheel of Fortune” (CMV) 5.1 AA
“Judge Judy” (CMV) 4.3 AA
“The Big Bang Theory” (WB) 2.4 AA
“Entertainment Tonight” (CMV) 2.2 AA
“Inside Edition” (CMV) 2.1 AA
“Last Man Standing” (DAD) 1.8 AA
“Live With Kelly and Ryan” (DAD) 1.8 AA
“Hot Bench” (CMV) 1.5 AA
Source: Nielsen

Basic Cable Top 5 for the week of April 26
Primetime (P2+)
Fox News (2,261,000)
ESPN (2,088,000)
MSNBC (1,647,000)
HGTV (1,288,000)
CNN (1,122,000)
Total Day (P2+)
Fox News (1,210,000)
MSNBC (887,000)
CNN (694,000)
ESPN (688,000)
HGTV (658,000)

Broadcast Nielsen Ratings for Monday, May 3
Show, P2+ 000s, (A18-49)
ABC: “Incredibles 2” 2.17 (0.5), “Home Economics” 1.20 (0.3)
CBS: “The Neighborhood” 5.31 (0.7), “Bob Hearts Abishola” 4.91 (0.6), “All Rise” 3.63 (0.4), “Bull” 5.57 (0.5)
CW: “All American” 0.27 (0.1),“Black Lightning” 0.32 (0.1)
ION: “NCIS: LA” 0.83 (0.1), “NCIS: LA” 0.87 (0.2), “NCIS: LA” 0.79 (0.1)
FOX: “9-1-1” 6.12 (1.0), “9-1-1: Lone Star” 5.26 (0.8)
NBC: “The Voice” 6.24 (0.8), “The Voice” 6.21 (0.9), “Debris” 2.57 (0.4)
Telemundo: “Exatlon” 1.15 (0.3), “Suerte de Loli” 1.04 (0.3), “Buscando Frida” 1.25 (0.4)
Univision: “Disenando Tu Amor” 1.53 (0.4), “Te Acuradas de Mi” 1.55 (0.4), “Hija del Embajador” 1/33 (0.3)
Source: Nielsen live + same day time period averages


Little Dot Studios, an All3Media company, announced John Holdridge as Managing Director, USA. Holdridge was previously Fullscreen’s General Manager of Brand Services.

Banijay Rights has promoted Claire Jago to EVP, EMEA Sales and Acquisitions. In her expanded role, she will take responsibility for the team and activity across the entire region.

Patty Keenan has joined Ampersand as its Chief People Officer. Keenan’s experience in Human Resources includes time at PepsiCo, IBM, Andersen Consulting, and most recently AXA.

The National Association of Television Program Executives announced the election of Sarah Aubrey, Head of Original Content, HBO Max; Sean Cohan, Chief Growth Officer and President, International, Nielsen; Dan Cohen, President, Global Distribution Group, ViacomCBS; and Laura Kennedy, CEO, Avalon to its Board, effective immediately.

Frequence has hired Anna Enerio as Head of Marketing. Enerio was previously Head of Marketing at PARC.

Michael Dobson has joined iNvolved Media as SVP, Digital Media. Dobson was previously VP, Social Media Strategy & Buying with Horizon Media.

Thunderbird Entertainment Group Inc. elevated Sarah Nathanson to the position of Corporate Secretary and Chief Operating Officer for all Thunderbird Divisions. Prior to her promotion, Nathanson served as Thunderbird’s General Counsel.

This Day in History
1921 – Perfume Chanel No. 5 was released.

Answer to Our Last Trivia Question
What weekly series ran under five different titles and aired at different times on ABC, NBC and CBS? “Walt Disney Anthology Television Series.” Kudos to: Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; Charles Lore/NYC; Aaron Paquette-Screen Engine/ASI/Fort Worth, TX

Today’s Trivia Question
Which series focused on a TV priest who had an identical twin brother who was a con artist? (Email [email protected] 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.)

Cynopsis Team

Lynn Leahey
Editorial Director
Kerry Smith
Division President
Access Intelligence

Roberta Caploe

Cynopsis Ad Sales
Albert Nassour
Cynopsis Job Listings Sales
John Cox

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MY ENTERTAINMENT/NYC-REMOTE: NYC-based production company looking for a full-time Bookkeeper/Production Accountant to work both remotely and in office. Seeking candidate with 3-7 years’ experience and skilled in QuickBooks and Excel required. Full info HERE (5/19)



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GFX Op >>
NEWSMAX MEDIA/NY, NY: Must be able to set up and play out all graphic elements which are included in pre-recorded or live programming. Mnge graphic content as it corresponds to live and pre-recorded programs. Satisfy all production req for live and pre-recorded programming under the supervision of the show’s director and technical operations mngmt. Min 3 yrs of exp in graphic and character generation, plus 1yr exp with Ross Xpression. Full info HERE (5/7)

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THE PALEY CENTER FOR MEDIA/NYC: Research and identify companies to solicit for sponsorship. Communicate mission and programs with enthusiasm and make compelling cases for support to attract and secure corporate funders/sponsors and develop and create attractive sponsorship and marketing presentations. 8+ years of senior-level sponsorship and development experience required. Full info HERE (5/6)

LOS ANGELES: Lead Marketing team: Paid, BI analysis, analytics. Secondary: CRM & partner marketing. Manage day to day efforts, including paid programs w/ partners including Amazon, Vizio, etc. Identify new opportunities. College grad in relevant quantitative disciplines w/analytical leaning degree. Digital advertising experience or related fields-exposure to data science and predictive modelling required. Full info HERE (5/6)


Development of Pacing report for Digital & Linear Ad Sales. Assist in maintaining & developing day to day Digital Reports/statistics. Assist/development Custom Digital Ad Sales Decks and/or materials. BA in business, marketing, communications/media or related field, or equivalent education and experience. Min. 24 months related experience in Digital Research. Full info HERE (5/6)

CRACKLE PLUS/LOS ANGELES: Oversee BI analytics for customer acquisition, Manage day-to-day BI output, Track and analyze historical KPIs. B.S. in Statistics, Math, Economics, Engineering or Finance (or relevant disciplines). Digital advertising experience or related fields (exposure to data science and predictive modelling). Full info HERE (5/6)


Will provide guidance to A+E business divisions on global privacy matters, data collection, security and use issues. Support the Digital Media business group, Global Content Licensing business group and Privacy and Data Security matters. Requires 5-7 years legal experience, transactional work and digital media and distribution. Full info HERE (5/5)


Develop and implement programming and on-air promo schedules, analyze and maintain viewing data and manage Streaming TV program strategy and scheduling team. 8+ years in television or digital programming strategy required, in addition to a deep understanding and passion of television, streaming tv and digital content landscape. Full info HERE (5/5)

ABC: The Goldbergs, Home Economics, The Conners, The Conners, A Million Little Things
CBS: Kids Say the Darndest Things [p], SEAL Team, S.W.A.T.
CW: Kung Fu, Nancy Drew
FOX: The Masked Singer, Game of Talents
NBC: Chicago Med, Chicago Fire, Chicago P.D.
PBS: Greta Thunberg: A Year to Change the World, Human: The World Within [p], Human: The World Within
Telemundo: Exatlon Estados Unidos, La Suerte de Loli, Buscando a Frida
Univision: Disenando Tu Amor, Te Acuerdas Di Mi, La Hija Del Embajador



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