06/04/20: Netflix cancels Astronomy Club: The Sketch Show


Cynopsis Medias First Morning Read
Thursday June 4, 2020

Tonight’s Premieres
CBS All Access: The Thomas John Experience
Food Network: Summer Rush at 10p
History: Mountain Men at 9p
Hulu: In My Skin
ID: Dead Reckoning at 9p, A Time to Kill at 10p
UPtv: Heartland at 8p

Tonight’s Finales
ABC: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire at 8p
HBO: We’re Here at 9p
Science: Mysteries of the Abandoned at 9p


Snapchat said is no longer promoting President Trump’s content on its Discover platform. “We will not amplify voices who incite racial violence and injustice by giving them free promotion on Discover,” said the company. “Racial violence and injustice have no place in our society and we stand together with all who seek peace, love, equality, and justice in America.” Trump’s content remains available to users who subscribe or search for it.

The Center for Democracy and Technology, a tech group supported by Facebook, Google and Twitter, filed a lawsuit against President Trump, claiming his executive order on social media – which could allow the government to assume oversight of political speech on the internet – threatens to “curtail and chill constitutionally protected free speech.” The CDT said the White House violated the First Amendment, which “prohibits government officials from using government power to retaliate against and individual or entity for engaging in protected speech.” Trump issued the order after Twitter fact-checked one of his tweets.

As protests over the death of George Floyd continue, The Walt Disney Co. has pledged $5 million to support nonprofit social justice groups. “The killing of George Floyd has forced our nation to once again confront the long history of injustice that black people in America have suffered, and it is critical that we stand together, speak out and do everything in our power to ensure that acts of racism and violence are never tolerated,” said CEO Bob Chapek. “This $5 million pledge will continue to support the efforts of nonprofit organizations such as the NAACP that have worked tirelessly to ensure equality and justice.”

Google is donating $12 million to groups working to address racial inequities, said CEO Sundar Pichai in an email to employees. “Our black community is hurting, and many of us are searching for ways to stand up for what we believe, and reach out to people we love to show solidarity,” said Pichai. “Supporting worthy organizations is a step in the right direction, but it is not a replacement for doing the harder work ahead both within and outside of Google.” The first grants of $1 million each will go to the Center for Policy Equality and the Equal Justice Initiative.

Netflix canceled Astronomy Club: The Sketch Show after one season. The series, exec produced by Kenya Barris, launched December 6. “Seems like a good time to mention ‘Astronomy Club’ was sadly not renewed by Netflix,” said a post on the show’s Twitter account. “Thank you to all the fans who watched! Hoping that more black artists & comedians are given the platform to have voices in the future.”

The Real co-host Amanda Seales said in an Instagram Live video that she does not plan to renew her contract with the Fox daytime talker. “It doesn’t feel good to my soul to be at a place where I cannot speak to my people they way they need to be spoken to,” said Seales, who signed on as a permanent co-host six months ago.

A Florida sheriff has confirmed that the will of Don Lewis, late husband of Tiger King star Carole Baskin, was forged. “They had two experts declare it a forgery,” said Hillsborough County sheriff Chad Chronister in a video. “We knew that before, because the girl who came forward and said, ‘Hey, I was forced to say I witnessed these signatures.’” Basin responded with a statement saying, “All of the documents were authenticated by at least two expert firms and everyone involved in the conservatorship agreed by stipulation ratified by the court to their authenticity.” During the Netflix show, Joe Exotic – now in prison for hiring a hit man to kill Baskin – accused her of feeding Lewis to a tiger.

Responding to a Wall Street Journal report of imminent layoffs, Quibi founder Jeffrey Katzenberg and CEO Meg Whitman assured staffers in a memo on Wednesday that no employees are getting cut. “Nothing has changed since our last company meeting two weeks ago,” the memo said. “Quibi is in a good financial position. As we said in that meeting, we will look for ways to tighten our belt. We are not laying off staff as a part of cost saving measures. We’ve recently added a dozen new Quibi employees.” Senior executives agreed to take a 10% pay cut “because it’s the right thing to do,” according to the memo.

The CW’s Batwoman will have a new identity when the show returns for season two without Ruby Rose in the lead. Rather than recast Kate Kane, a casting notice called for a character named Ryan Wilder who is “likable, messy, a little goofy, and untamed” – unlike the character Rose played. Rose made the surprise announcement that she was leaving the show last month.

Local TV viewership is still significantly higher than pre-COVID-19 levels, but 18-24-year-olds are turning away from local TV as their news source, reports SmithGeiger. While 25% of the age group relied on local news in a March study, the number dipped to 23%in April and 11% in May. “We are post-peak in this environment; there is no question,” said Dr. Seth Geiger, President and co-founder of SmithGeiger. “But the trust that has been placed in local news has stayed relatively stable and is still at a very high level.”

Have you seen the lineup for Tuesday’s FREE virtual event? View the agenda e and join Cynopsis on June 9th as we interact with A-list speakers who will tackle the many different ways brands, leagues and networks are aiming for success in a post-COVID world. Register for The Great Sports Disruption today and let’s get back to the business of sports.

The adtech community is stepping up to the plate…

The Cynopsis Adtech Awards
Enter by June 10th

During a time when in-person events have been cancelled, the adtech community is stepping up. They’re helping to guarantee marketers upfront inventory and preserve revenue for media owners by using breakthrough approaches and solutions. Adtech providers are a group that lives on the cutting edge of innovation, which is why we are celebrating their platforms, campaigns, and strategies in more than 20 categories. View them all here.


FilmRise’s new linear channel FilmRise Action has debuted on The Roku Channel, with a lineup of movies like Stolen Blitz and Sharpshooter. All films have been edited to ensure a PG-13 rating suitable for family viewing.


PBS is broadcasting a series of films and new specials focused on race in America. In addition to re-broadcasting films focused on African American history by Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Stanley Nelson, PBS will also curate a playlist of programs from Frontline, POV, Independent Lens and other series that explore the impact of racism on Black Americans and the larger country. Tonight, June 4, PBS is re-airing The Talk – Race in America at 9p.

Coverage of the preliminary hearing of the murder case of Ahmaud Arbery starts today, June 4 at 9a on Court TV. Father and son Gregory and Travis McMichael are accused of felony murder in the shooting death of Arbery as he was jogging in Georgia.

Also airing today is a virtual town hall to discuss the current political and racial climate. We Are One: More Than A Hashtag will stream live at 8p on the digital platforms across the Urban One brands Radio One, Reach Media, TV One and iOne Digital.

Tubi has curated a collection of movies and documentaries under the banner, “United Against Inequality.” Among the offerings are Harriet Tubman: They Called Her Moses (1918), Up From Slavery (2011), Freedom Road (1979), and The Injustice System in America (2007).

Antenna TV celebrates Father’s Day with an all-day marathon of Coach, starting at 5a on Sunday, June 21.

Decades TV is airing Pandemic Amnesia: Recovering the Memory of the 1918 Influenza Outbreak, a documentary investigating the catastrophic impact of the 1918 health crisis, on Monday, June 8 at 9p.


RealNetworks has two new tools that use AI to help video viewers identify who they’re seeing. Browser extension StarSearch by Real identifies famous people in any video streamed from YouTube, Netflix and other popular sites, while media player RealPlayer 20/20 offers one-click video downloads and instantly spots and identifies people in videos, and enables organization of media files based on who appears in them. RealAudio was introduced 25 years ago, and “Streaming has since become a central part of society, especially in these challenging times,” said RealNetworks founder and CEO Rob Glaser. “We hope that millions of consumers worldwide will find StarSearch and RealPlayer 20/20 delightful and useful.”

Identity resolution company Tru Optik announced an agreement with Deep Root, an audience-powered analytics company, to integrate Deep Root’s proprietary audience-based segments – political, public affairs and corporate advocacy – to Tru Optik’s Political Data Cloud. The integration will enable media companies and political advertisers to leverage Deep Root’s audience segments with data sets of voter history, consumer and behavioral insights across OTT/CTV. “There’s no denying that now, more than ever, registered voters are engaging in content from connected TV. Political candidates, campaigns and advocacy groups must recognize this and leverage these platforms in order to reach targeted voter audiences,” said Richard Kosinski, EVP, Sales, Tru Optik.

Google is being sued for allegedly collecting data on Chrome users who were using the browser’s incognito mode, in what the lawsuit describes as a violation of California privacy laws and the federal wiretap law. “Google tracks and collects consumer browsing history and other web activity data no matter what safeguards consumers undertake to protect their data privacy,” allege two California residents and a Florida resident in a class-action complaint filed Tuesday in US District Court for the Northern District of California. A Google spokesperson said the company “strongly” disputes the claims.


While 82% of viewers want to see relevant ads, only 54% find ads they see relevant, according to a DISQO study conducted in May – and a majority of people (56%) said they responded negatively when seeing irrelevant ads. Advertisers are faring better with younger generations, found DISQ, with 60% of 18-24-year-olds most likely to agree that the ads they see are relevant, versus 41% of 65-74-year-olds.

CTV continues to grow, with 36% year-over-year volume increases, despite continued declines across mobile (-26%) and PC (-20%) device types, according to the Innovid iQ dashboard, offering a weekly view of the video ad landscape amid COVID-19. For the week of May 24 to May 30, key takeaways include:
· After 4-weeks of year-over-year growth, global video volume dropped 8% year-over-year.
· Even with an overall decline, several verticals including CPG (+ 59%), Telecom (+18%), Finance (+11%), and Pharma (+3%) experienced year-over-year volume growth. Auto (-80%) continues to see significant declines year-over-year, alongside Retail (-37%).
· On the publisher front, programmatic publishers led growth with +33% year-over-year impression volume.


BBC One, Heyday Television and NBCUniversal International Studios’ surveillance thriller The Capture will return for a second run. The first season on BBC One was BBC iPlayer’s biggest new title of 2019 with over 22 million requests on the platform to date.

Nucleus Media Rights has reached an agreement with kids streaming service Kidoodle.TV for the preschool series Bubu and The Little Owls. Beginning June, Kidoodle.TV will feature the first two seasons of the animated children’s series globally on connected devices including iOS, Android, AppleTV, Fire TV, LG, Samsung, Chromecast, Roku, Amazon, and other streaming media devices.

Cineflix Rights has signed a partnership deal with Live PD Host/Executive Producer Dan Abrams’ Law&Crime Productions and Justice Network to greenlight the new crime series Killer Cases. The series has been pre-sold to A+E Networks Crime + Investigation channels across its EMEA territories including the UK, Africa, Italy, Iberia, Germany Poland, and Africa, where the series will broadcast as Murder Masterminds.

GoQuest Media inked a deal with streaming platform MX Player that sees GoQuest Media acquire the worldwide distribution rights for two of its top-rated epic drama originals, Queen and Ek Thi Begum (The Mafia Queen).

Melbourne’s Fred Media acquired kids’ TV shows Brainbuzz and Smashdown! from Nine Network, adding nearly 175 hours to its kids’ catalogue.

BBC Storyville has acquired the UK rights to Scandalous, a documentary about the National Enquirer, from AGC International. BBC Storyville will broadcast the film on BBC Four in June.

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Click here for a complete look on what’s out there.


Univision ranked as the number one network on broadcast television in primetime among A18-34 (226,000) the week of May 25, and finished as the third most-watched broadcast network, among A18-49 (549,000). The net delivered year-over-year primetime audience growth for the eleventh consecutive week among Total Viewers 2+ (+12% to 1.4 million), A18-49 (+17% to 549,000) and A18-34 (+18% to 226,000).

UniMás delivered primetime audience growth week-over-week among A18-34 the week of May 25 (+4% to 79,000), and audience growth year-over-year during primetime among Total Viewers 2+ (+6% to 434,000), A18-49 (+21% to 210,000) and 18-34 (+25% to 79,000), marking the 32nd consecutive week of audience growth.

With news preemptions keeping most syndicated shows from improving in the session ending May 24, Dr. Phil hit a nine-week high 2.3 Live+SD national Nielsen rating, up 5% from the week before. Live with Kelly and Ryan (2.0, steady) finished a strong second and Ellen DeGeneres (1.5, unchanged) remained at its season low for a second week.

Top 10 M-F Syndicated Strip Series for the week of May 18 ranked in order by HH Rtg
Family Feud (CTD) 6.2 AA
Jeopardy (CTD) 6.0 AA
Judge Judy (CTD) 5.9 AA
Wheel of Fortune (CTD) 5.8 AA
The Big Bang Theory (WB) 3.2 AA
Inside Edition (CTD) 2.6 AA
Entertainment Tonight (CTD) 2.6 AA
Dr. Phil Show (CTD) 2.3 AA
Last Man Standing (DAD) 2.1 AA
Hot Bench (CTD) 2.1 AA

TV Time’s Binge Report for the Week of May 25
Dynasty (The CW) – 5.75%
Friends (NBC) – 1.69%
The Office (NBC) – 1.65%
Modern Family (ABC) – 1.59%
Control Z (Netflix) – 1.52%
Brooklyn Nine-Nine (NBC) – 1.40%
Grey’s Anatomy (ABC) – 1.28%
The 100 (The CW) – 1.17%
How to Get Away with Murder (ABC) – 1.12%
How I Met Your Mother (CBS) – 1.02%
The weekly Binge Report ranks shows with the most binge sessions. A binge session is when four or more episodes of a show are watched and tracked in the TV Tie app within a given day.

Broadcast Nielsen Ratings for Tuesday, June 2
Show, P2+ 0000s, (A18-49)
ABC: black-ish 2.89 (0.5), black-ish 2.11 (0.4), American Pain 3.10 (0.6) Genetic Detective 3.09 (0.4)
CBS: NCIS 6.56 (0.6), FBI 4.82 (0.4), FBI: Most Wanted 4.12 (0.4)
CW: DC’s Stargirl 0.96 (0.2), DC’s Legends of Tomorrow 0.73 (0.2)
FOX: Hell’s Kitchen 1.78 (0.6), 24 Hours to Hell and Back 1.63 (0.5)
NBC: America’s Got Talent 8.89 (1.3), World of Dance 4.27 (0.8)
TELEMUNDO: Cennet 1.28 (0.4), 100 Dias Enamorarnos 0.93 (0.4), La Riena del Sur 0.68 (0.3)
UNIVISION: Te Doy la Vida 1.80 (0.6), Amor Eterno 1.94 (0.6), Como to no Hay Dos 1.60 (0.5)
Source: Nielsen, live + same day time period averages


Tricia Melton has joined Warner Bros. as Chief Marketing Officer of Global Kids, Young Adults and Classics, effective June 29. Melton was most recently SVP, Marketing, Brand, Creative and Communications at Freeform.

Entravision appointed Chris Munoz as EVP of National Sales. He previously was SVP for Univision National Sales.


Patricia Reed Scott, who helped bring film and TV productions to New York in the 1980s and ‘90s, died of injuries sustained in a fall. She was 86. Scott served as director of the Mayor’s Office of Film, Theater and Broadcasting from 1983 to 1989 and as commissioner of the office from 1994 to 2002.

Character actress Mary Pat Gleason died of cancer on June 2. She was 70. Gleason’s many television credits include Saved by the Bell, Desperate Housewives, Mom, The Blacklist and American Housewife, among others.

Actress Peggy Pope died May 27. She was 91. In addition to roles in theater and film, Pope appeared on numerous TV shows, including Mork & Mindy, Rhoda, Night Court, Barney Miller and ER, among others.

This Day in History
1070 – Roquefort cheese was created in a cave near Roquefort, France.

Answer to Our Last Trivia Question
On Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman (1976-77), who was the “Fernwood Flasher”? Mary’s grandfather, Raymond Larkin. Charles Lore/NYC, Gerry Bixenspan-TV Marketing Inc./NYC, Rev. Mark Wajda/Lakeland, FL, Phyllis McQuillan-MSG Networks/NYC, Ed Horwitz-The Talk/Studio City, CA, Paul Blutter-Walk and Talk Production Rentals/Burbank, Lorrie Shilling/El Segundo, CA, Miriam Aardahl-OMD/LA, Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station, TX

Today’s Trivia Question
The opening music for which 1989-1991 sitcom was “Good Lovin’”? (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.)

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Check out more jobs in Cynopsis Classifieds »
Job of the day
Rye Brooke NY

Responsible for growing and managing its Diginet business across all of its TV stations. Minimum of 5 yrs exp in sales in the TV industry and experience in Diginet/multicast/D2 business required. Exp’d networking & establishing new relationships with key players at agencies and advertisers. BA deg Full info HERE (6/16)

Glass Entertainment Group/Philadelphia:
Story producer to help lead a new episodic podcast. You will be involved in episode dvlopmnt, rsrch, interview prep & prod episodes (both during actual record & in post). Background in storytelling & min 5yrs exp making audio, pref w/proven field reporting exp. Full info HERE (6/13)

AccuWeather/State College PA:
Produce compelling live video segments for the national network on a daily and as-needed schedule. Put together the rundown for each individual segment and work with a team. Entrepreneurial spirit & working knwldg of non-linear editing suites req’d. Full info HERE (6/12)

AMC Networks’ Acorn TV/Silver Spring, MD:
Plans, implements, evaluates performance/KPIs of multi-territory subscriber acquisition campaigns; acts as creative lead and agency POC. Spanish fluency required; marketing exp, 5+ yrs. Full info/apply HERE (6/11)

Passionate, innovative & driven candidate to support planning, development & execution of marketing, brand building & PR initiatives for the company’s Football & Basketball clients. 5+ yrs comms, sales, superior marketing & athletic brand building skills a must. Full info HERE (6/7)

Earth Day Network/DC:
Help support the dvlpmnt/ execution of multi-channel, integrated communications and engagement strategies. 3+ yrs of communications planning and execution exp. Superior communication skills a must. Full info HERE (6/6)

Newsmax Media/NYC:
Exceptional storyteller with a dedicated command for news and cultural trends to write for fast-paced primetime and overnight newscasts. 3+ yrs of national or large market local news experience. Full info HERE (6/5)

Newsmax Media/NYC:
Exceptional storyteller with a dedicated command for news and cultural trends to write for fast-paced primetime and overnight newscasts. 3+ yrs of national or large market local news experience. Full info HERE (6/5)

Newsmax Media/NYC:
Responsible for working with show hosts, preparing the rundown of new stories, identifying and integrating guests, overseeing and executing the prod of key video & graphic elements w/guidance from the EP. 3+ yrs EP exp or overseeing newscast production. Full info HERE (6/5)

Newsmax Media/NYC:
Responsible for the production of live newscasts, news shows and recorded video segments for TV & digital platforms. Strong understanding of Newsmax brand and talent. Strong writing & organizational skills req’d as is the ability to produce content under heavy deadline pressure. Full info HERE (6/5)

ABC: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire [f], Holey Moley, To Tell the Truth
CBS: Young Sheldon, Man With a Plan, Mom, Broke, S.W.A.T.
CW: Burden of Truth, In the Dark
FOX: Celebrity Watch Party, Summer of Love
NBC: Council of Dads, Blindspot, NBC News Special: America in Crisis
PBS: This Old House Hour, The Talk – Race in America
Telemundo: Cennet, 100 Dias Para Enamorarnos, La Reina del Sur
Univision: Te Doy la Vida, Amor Eterno, Como tu no Hay Dos


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