11/10/16: Cable news hits ratings highs Election Night; Media execs see positives in Trump presidency; Freeform kills Dead of Summer




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Good morning. It’s Thursday November 10, 2016, and this is your first early morning briefing.

Tonight’s Premiere:
Science Channel: World’s Biggest Shipbuilders at 10p

Tonight’s Finales:
A&E: 60 Days In at 9p, Behind Bars: Rookie Year at 10:30p
CMT: I Love Kellie Pickler at 10p
Food Network: Chopped: Beat Bobby Flay at 9p
FX: Better Things at 10p




Watch an All-New Episode of Gold Rush
Friday 9p
On Discovery



What will a Donald Trump presidency mean for the media business? Before the election, the candidate said his administration would block AT&T’s planned purchase of Time Warner Inc., and look into breaking up Comcast Corp. and NBCUniversal. “Deals like this destroy democracy,” said Trump. But AT&T CFO John Stephens struck an optimistic note during an investors’ conference yesterday. “We really look forward to working with President-elect Trump and his transition team,” said Stephens. “Policies and discussions about infrastructure investment, economic development and American innovation all fit right in with AT&T’s goals.”

Dish Network CEO Charlie Ergen is also bullish on merger possibilities, going so far as to say in an earnings call yesterday that it would be “malpractice” to sit on the sidelines. “We have wireless spectrum, we have scale and video, but we don’t have a network,” said Ergen. “You can imagine all the interesting things that are going to happen.” As for the surprise Trump victory, Ergen pointed to a positive for Dish: “It certainly is possible that with new leadership, all net neutrality might go away.”

One-time Donald Trump target Megyn Kelly urged Americans to “keep an open mind” about a Trump presidency. Co-hosting morning show LIVE with Kelly yesterday, the Fox News anchor noted, “Love him or hate him, he’s the president elect of our country, and the one thing he needs now more than ever is our prayers and good wishes.”

The Simpsons was first to predict a Donald Trump presidency – 16 years ago, as Deadline points out. In a 2000 episode of the Fox animated comedy, set in the future, Lisa is elected president after a disastrous term by the former Apprentice boss. See the clip here.

Life at Freeform is over for Dead of Summer. The 1980s-set horror series centered on camp counselors will not be back for season 2.

Viacom’s Bob Bakish, stepping into an acting CEO role next week, pushed the company’s “global outlook” on an earnings call Wednesday. “It’s not about whether you have to spend dramatically more money necessarily,” Bakish said. “Our international experience shows you can deliver significant audiences on genres other than high-dollar scripted programming.” Bakish pointed to Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, which is “significantly stronger internationally” with host Trevor Noah than it was with Jon Stewart.

ABC isn’t upping its 13-episode order for freshman Conviction, but the legal drama is still on the slate. While Conviction just hit an A18-49 rating low of .6, its most recent Live+7 lift was 62 percent, to 1.3. The network, which still has an option to order a second season, had given full season orders to newcomers Speechless, American Housewife and Designated Survivor.


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Tim Hincks, former president of Endemol Shine Group, and ITV alum Peter Fincham, are teaming for production company Expectation Entertainment. Broadcast magazine broke the news.


Former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson, whose sexual harassment lawsuit against Fox News chief Roger Ailes led eventually to his resignation, will appear on ABC’s 20/20 on Friday, November 18. It’s Carlson’s first TV interview since the scandal.

Ovation TV will air its 10th annual Battle of the Nutcrackers starting Monday, December 12 at 7a. Viewers can vote for their favorite version of the classic ballet on the net’s Facebook page. Winner is repeated on Monday, December 21 at 7p.

The Chew is serving up Thanksgiving episodes the week of November 14. Taye Diggs (Empire), Ali Wentworth (Nightcap), Andrew Rannells (Falsettos), Billy Eichner (Billy on the Street) and Ziggy Marley are among the guests game for food-centric fun.

FXX celebrates The Simpsons with “Joyeux D’oh!-el,” featuring holiday-themed episodes starting Monday, December 19 at 8p with eight back-to-back episodes, continuing throughout the week and ending with eight back-to-back episodes from 4p-8p on Sunday, December 25.

The Donald Trump-inspired episode of Law & Order: SVU, focused on a presidential candidate faced with sordid accusations from women, has been bumped again. NBC had initially moved the episode from October 12 to October 26, then to a post-election date of November 16. This time around the shuffle is due to original episodes being yanked in favor of reruns opposite the red-hot World Series last week.


Yesterday, a day-after that had some sobbing and others celebrating, and more than a few friends scrubbed from Facebook, brought a Veteran’s Day video from INSP that more people can see eye to eye on. Tearjerker “Thank You For Your Service,” one in a series created for INSP’s Moments.org site to show veterans their country is grateful for their sacrifice, has been viewed over 2 million times on YouTube. You can find it here.


Rosie O’Donnell is onboard Showtime comedy pilot SMILF. The comedian and former talk show host will play the mother of a single twentysomething.

Alison Wright (The Americans) was tapped for a series regular role on new Ryan Murphy anthology series Feud on FX. First season focuses on the rivalry between Joan Crawford (Jessica Lange) and Bette Davis (Susan Sarandon).

Colm Feore (House of Cards) has joined the cast of new CBC drama series 21 Thunder, set in the fiercely competitive world of an under-21 soccer academy.

Leonard Roberts (American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson) will recur on season five of TNT’s Major Crimes. Roberts will play the head of the Criminal Intelligence Division of the LAPD.


Spending on advanced advertising and programmatic TV has grown by 92 percent since 1Q16, according to Videology’s third quarter Video At-A-Glance report. “We’re seeing two big shifts in linear TV advertising: marketers want to use more data to further segment their audiences beyond age/gender and suppliers want to increase yield by packaging data with inventory,” said Scott Ferber, founder and CEO of Videology. “As both of these objectives become more common, we’re seeing more and more linear inventory come into the ‘advanced’ TV marketplace. There remains a fine balance between the ability to achieve scalable reach and precision targeting, but both advertisers and media companies are seeing the value in bringing data into the equation.”

Tribune Media attributed earnings that didn’t meet expectations to “the Trump campaign’s substantially lower than expected ad spend on television advertising and the fact that our station portfolio does not benefit from Olympic advertising because we have only two relatively small NBC affiliates,” said CEO Peter Liguori. While TV and entertainment revenues were up 7 percent, to $459.1 million, core ad sales fell 6 percent.

According to a “not necessarily representative” October poll of ad industry executive by Advertiser Perceptions for MediaPost, almost twice as many of those surveyed agree with the American Association of Advertising Agencies’ transparency principles than those that side with the Association of National Advertisers’ recommendations. But one third of the entire group polled believed the associations should just remain neutral on the topic of transparency.

If, for some reason, you wanted to leave the country and live somewhere else, where would you go? Let us know in the new Cynopsis poll: http://cynopsis.com/poll//




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And the winner of Election Night among broadcast nets was – NBC, with an audience of 11.97 million, according to Nielsen’s preliminary primetime ratings. ABC had an average 9.68 million viewers, CBS 8.8 million, Fox 4.28 million, Univision 3.89 million and Telemundo 2.16 million. 

Cable news had a big Election Night. Between 7p and 3a, Fox News drew 12.2 million viewers (4.8 million among A25-54), CNN scored 11.2 million viewers (5.7 million in the news demo) and MSNBC had 5.3 million viewers (2.1 million A25-54). During primetime, CNN had the most-watched Election Night in cable news history  with 13.26 million viewers, followed by FNC (12.1 million) and MSNBC (5.9 million).

According to second-by-second analysis of cable news nets on election night by Samba TV, the Fox News share of audience grew the most as Donald Trump’s surprise victory became apparent, from a 14.1 percent share of audience at 8p to 21.23 percent at 2a. CNN went from 29.8 percent to 26.0 percent and MSNBC inched up from 8.1 percent at the top of the primetime hour to 9.8 percent at 2a.

Grit and Escape posted their most-watched months in October. In primetime for the month, Grit was up 41 percent in households, 76 percent among P18-49 and 69 percent in P25-54. Escape had year-over-year gains of 68 percent in households, 125 percent in P18-49 and 94 percent in P25-54 in primetime.

LAFF’s Roseanne marathon on Sunday, October 30 posted delivery gains of 111 percent in households, 215 percent in P18-49, 160 percent in P25-54 and 161 percent in P2+ compared to the previous four weeks. 


Laura Dames
was promoted to Executive Vice President & General Manager of Turner Studios. Dames, a 24-year Turner veteran, will oversee all facets of Turner Studios, the production division that supports the entire Turner portfolio.

This Day in History:
1885 – Gottlieb Daimler unveiled the first motorcycle.

Answer to Our Last Trivia Question:  What terrorist group kidnapped Sydney on Alias (2001-2006) and tried to brainwash her into believing she was an assassin named Julia Thorne? The Covenant. Kudos to: Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station, TX, David Garber-LMU School of Film and TV/Playa Vista, CA, Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA, David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank.

Today’s Trivia Question: Who guested as daytime talk show host Dottie on Murphy Brown (1988-1998)? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone. Unofficial rules: A limit of four correct answers from each time zone will be selected.).

Classic Sitcom Anagram: A Swinging Pro (Email [email protected]; first three respondents with the correct answer who aren’t in trivia – will be posted along with the answer on www.Cynopsis.com.)
Keep Watching & Reading,
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Diane K Schwartz: Senior Vice President, Media Communications Group 

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ABC: Grey’s Anatomy, Notorious, How to Get Away with Murder
CBS: The Big Bang Theory, The Great Indoors, Mom, Life in Pieces, Pure Genius
CW: DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Supernatural
FOX: Rosewood, Pitch
NBC: Superstore, The Good Place, Chicago Med, The Blacklist
PBS: This Old House Hour, The Guilty [r], Antiques Roadshow [r]
Telemundo: Silvana Sin Lana, Sin Senos Si Hay Paraiso, Senora Acero 3: La Coyote
Univision: Despertar Contigo, Vino el Amor, El Color de la Pasion

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