Friday, April 23rd, 2004





Good morning. It’s Friday, April 23, 2004, and this is your first early morning briefing.

Quite the flurry of activity late yesterday afternoon — Ed Wilson quits his post as President of NBC Enterprises followed with speculation that Steve Rosenberg, President of Universal Domestic TV, will end up with the pivotal NBC Universal top post once the merger is complete next month.  Then the other shoe drops – Steve Rosenberg has also quit.  And speculation abounds:   As rumor has it, Wilson was to be given the job as head of the new syndicated division (which got Rosenberg thinking about packing his bags), but decided to leave the offer on the table and not renew his contract.  Then when NBC turned to Rosenberg, his plans were already in motion to leave.  Whether NBC will be able to coax him back in the house, remains to be seen.

Turner’s TBS/TNT networks celebrated their upfront presentation/schedule/brand yesterday in NYC and announced a new contemporary tag for TBS; as well as a couple of new program series coming to the nets this season. 

  • First the TBS brand — in an effort to make this network the Caliente of funny’, TBS has updated its look, adopted a new tag line:  very funny; and has decided to concentrate on what makes people laugh.  To that end, in conjunction with a series of branding and promotional spots, the net will add S#x and the City, Everybody Loves Raymond and Yes Dear to the schedule this summer and King of Queens in 2006. Additionally, a couple of new series are coming to the Sked:  Gilligan’s Island – the reality series – in which exec prod Mike Fleiss (The Bachelor) will cast people in the roles of skipper, first mate, millionaire and his wife, a professor, a movie star, and a girl from the heartland, and put them on a deserted island.  This show comes to TBS in December 2004, and the network has already ordered up a second season. By the way, Sherwood Schwartz and his son Lloyd are also exec producing, and the theme song is pretty much the same, if not a little zipped up. Outback Jack from exec prod Bruce Nash, takes a twist on the Bachelor set up, in that the lovely and sophisticated ladies are dropped into the middle of the Australian outback, where along with vying for the attentions of the handsome bachelor, will also be surviving in the outback.   This series launches on June 22 with 8 eps.
  • Over to TNT.  Original programming is the name of the game and coming to TNT this summer is The Grid, a 6 hour limited series starring Dylan McDermott, Julianna Margulies and Tom Skerritt; and next summer from Steven Spielberg is a 12 hour limited series called Into the West. TNT also returns with its Johnson & Johnson Spotlight original film, this year it’s The Wool Cap, again starring William H. Macy and director Steven Schacter.  Miniseries for this summer is Salem’s Lot based on the Stephen King novel, and in July the movie Evil Kneivel starring George Eads (CSI) and Beau Bridges.  And coming in the fall, The Librarian – a sort of Indiana Jones adventure film from Dean Devlin (Independence Day, The Patriot).

Season Finale Tonight:  Married to the Kellys ABC 930pm

WB Sweeps highlights this year will include:
April 30: Run of the House season finale at 930p
May 7: What I Like About You and Grounded for Live season finales at 830p and 9p respectively
May 10: Everwood season finale at 9p
May 11: One Tree Hill season finale at 9p
May 14: Reba season finale at 8p
May 16:  Charmed season finale 8-10p
May 17:  7th Heaven season finale at 8p
May 17:  Premiere of The WB’s Superstar USA (this is the one where the ‘winners’ think they’re fabulous, only they really aren’t, but don’t find out the awful truth until the end.
May 18: Gilmore Girls season finale at 8p
May 19: Smallville and Angel season finales at 8p and 9p respectively

ABC Sweep highlights:
Apr 30:  The Big House season finale at 830p
May 5: Extreme Makeover season finale at 10p
May 6: Extreme Makeover Home Edition airs 2-hour special with a LIVE reveal in NYC (8-10p)
May 11: NYPD Blue season finale at 10p
May 14: Hope & Faith one hour season finale 9-10p
May 16: Super Millionaire premiere at 9p; and The Practice series finale at 10p
May 18: 8 Simple Rules one hour season finale at 8-9p, and Less than Perfect season finale at 930p
May 19: The Bachelor season finale at 9p
May 21: George Lopez one hour season finale at 8p
May 23: Alias season finale at 9p
May 25: According to Jim season finale at 930p
May 26: My Wife and Kids one hour season finale at 8p

ABC has also ordered up two more go-arounds with The Bachelor from exec prod Mike Fleiss.

Top 10 M-F Syndicated Strip Series for the week of April 5-11, 2004 ranked by HH Rtg
Wheel of Fortune (King World)                 8.1 AA  
Jeopardy (King World)                   6.7 AA
Oprah (King World)                      5.8 AA / 5.9 GAA
Seinfeld (Sony)                         5.6 AA / 6.6 GAA
Friends (Warner Bros.)                  5.4 AA / 6.4 GAA
Everybody Loves Raymond (King World)    5.0 AA / 5.7 GAA
Entertainment Tonight (Paramount)       4.7 AA / 4.8 GAA
Judge Judy (Paramount)          4.6 AA / 6.9 GAA
Dr. Phil (King World)                   4.4 AA / 4.4 GAA
Live With Regis and Kelly (Buena Vista) 3.5 AA
Source Nielsen Media Research

Top 10 M-F Syndicated Strip Series for the week of April 5-11, 2004 ranked by A18-49
Seinfeld (Sony)                         3.8 AA / 4.5 GAA
Friends (Warner Bros.)                  3.6 AA / 4.1 GAA
Everybody Loves Raymond (King World)    2.7 AA / 3.0 GAA
That 70’s Show (Carsey-Werner)  2.4 AA / 3.0 GAA
Oprah (King World)                      2.3 AA / 2.3 GAA
Entertainment Tonight (Paramount)       2.2 AA / 2.2 GAA
Wheel of Fortune (King World)           2.2 AA
King of the Hill (20th)                 2.0 AA / 2.3 GAA
Will & Grace (Warner Bros.)             1.9 AA / 2.3 GAA
Judge Judy (Paramount)          1.8 AA / 2.7 GAA
Source Nielsen Media Research

Fox takes Wednesday night with an overall 5.7/16 A18-49, ahead of  ABC 4.1/11, NBC 4.0/11, CBS 2.4/7, WB 1.9/5, UPN 1.3/4, according to Nielsen Media Research.  The fun began at 8pm with Fox’s That 70’s Show dominating the first half hour with a 4.6/15 demo rating, a full six share points ahead of its closest competition, My Wife & Kids on ABC and the first half hour of The Most Outrageous Moments on Live TV (NBC), both averaging a 9 share.  At 830p, it was all about Fox and American Idol (8.9/25, with a 10.9/28 W18-49); everyone else was pretty well dusted.  At 9pm, ABC’s The Bachelor takes over with a 5.0/13, just a share point ahead of Fox’s The O.C. (4.7/12).  At 10p NBC wins the hour with L&O’s 5.8/15, followed by ABC’s Extreme Makeover (4.4/12) and then CBS’ 48 Hours (2.8/7).

This Old House, a This Old House Productions, Inc. production and PBS show, upped two of its production team members to key producer positions.  Bruce Irving was upped to Executive Producer. David Vos was named Sr. Producer and Director.  Russell Morash will return as the show’s creative director and founder. Can you believe it will be the show’s 25th season?!? That’s an Old House!

Top 5 Broadcast Spanish Language Primetime Programs for the week of April 12-18, 2004
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Tue 8p)            20.5 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Wed 8p)            20.3 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Mon 8p)            20.1 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Thu 8p)            19.2 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Don Francisco Presenta (Wed 10p)        18.3 NHTI HH Rtg
Source Nielsen Media Research
Note NHTI Ratings are based on 10.57 million Hispanic TV Homes

Top 5 Broadcast English Language Primetime Programs in Hispanic TV Homes for the week of April 12-18, 2004
NBC     Apprentice (Thu 9p)                     8.1 NHTI HH Rtg
Fox     American Idol (Wed 8p)                  8.0 NHTI HH Rtg
UPN     WWE Smackdown (Thu 8p)          6.6 NHTI HH Rtg         
NBC     Friends (Thu 830p)                      6.3 NHTI HH Rtg
Fox     Simpsons (Sun 830p)                     6.2 NHTI HH Rtg
NBC     Fear Factor (Mon 8p)                    6.2 NHTI HH Rtg
Source Nielsen Media Research
Note NHTI Ratings are based on 10.57 million Hispanic TV Homes

African American television homes in the US represent 12,870,000 households. Here are the rankings for the week of April 12-18, 2004 – highest rated primetime network programs in African American TV homes according to Nielsen Media Research
FOX     American Idol (Wed 830p)                19.0 HH Rtg
UPN     Girlfriends (Mon 9p)                    15.4 HH Rtg
FOX     American Idol (Thur 8p)                         14.9 HH Rtg
UPN     Half & Half (Mon 930p)                  14.4 HH Rtg
NBC     Apprentice (Thu 9p)                     14.4 HH Rtg
FOX     Bernie Mac (Mon 830p)                   13.0 HH Rtg
FOX     Bernie Mac (Mon 8p)                     11.7 HH Rtg
UPN     Eve (Mon 830p)                          11.4 HH Rtg
UPN     All of Us       (Tue 830p)                      11.0 HH Rtg
UPN     One on One (Tue 8p)                     10.9 HH Rtg
Source Nielsen Media Research

Razor & Tie, an independent entertainment company, named 4 new marketing department appointments.  Don Spielvogel was named Senior Director of Video.  Don will report to co-owners Cliff Chenfeld and Craig Balsam.  Kevin O’Connor was named Director of Children’s Entertainment.   Rachel Mintz was named Senior Product Manager.   Sandi Hemmerlein was upped to Senior Product Manager. Kevin, Rachel  and Sandi will report to Josh Zieman, the company’s General Manager.

Jo Petherbridge was named Acting COO for BBC AMERICA.  She will be responsible for the daily operations until a replacement is found for retiring Paul Lee.  She will report to Jana Bennett, Director/Television and Mark Young, President and CEO/BBC Worldwide Americas.  Jo is currently SVP/Strategy and Communications.

Julie Moss was upped to Senior Administrator in HBO‘s Program Scheduling department.

Wednesday, April 21, 2004. Fast Affiliate Household Ratings for all Networks. Fast affiliate numbers which reflect time period data, not program data, and can change slightly once the finals come in, particularly for LIVE programming (i.e. Football). Source Nielsen Media Research. Time Period Averages Only. [p] = Premiere; [o] = Original; [r] = Repeat

NBC     8.3/13  NBC Special: The Most Outrageous Moments on Live TV 6.3/11, The West Wing 7.2/11, Law & Order 11.4/19

FOX     8.0/13  That 70’s Show 6.2/11, American Idol 12.2/20, The O.C. 6.8/11

ABC     6.5/11  My Wife and Kids 5.4/9, My Wife and Kids [r] 5.2/8, The Bachelor 7.9/12, Extreme Makeover 6.5/11

CBS     6.2/10  60 Minutes II 6.0/10, The King of Queens 6.0/9, Yes, Dear 5.3/8, 48 Hours 7.0/11

WB      2.7/4   Smallville 2.8/5, Angel 2.5/4

UPN     2.1/3   Enterprise 2.2/4, I’m Still Alive 2.0/3

A18-49  FOX 5.7/16, ABC 4.1/11, NBC 4.0/11, CBS 2.4/7, WB 1.9/5, UPN 1.3/4



#1 Time Period Choice with
HH and Total Viewers!

A Top 15 Primetime Program
7 of the last 10 weeks!

Available exclusively from
Warner Bros. Domestic Cable Distribution

Source: NTI Explorer, 4/18/04 or as noted. TP: Sun 8-9pm.  New drama rank based on HH.  US Rating. 

The History Channel
presents This Day in History:
1984 – American scientists announce the discovery of the virus that causes AIDS. Initially it is known as HTLV-3; it is later renamed HIV. An estimated 24 million people have died of AIDS since its emergence in the 1980s.

Answer to Yesterday’s Trivia Question:  Here’s a question about a big red wagon.  On what show would you find a big red wagon filled with socially inept businessmen? Conan O’Brien in 1995 – Wussy Wagon Kudos to:   Karen Neal-Turner/Atlanta; Michael Grueter-Empower MediaMarketing/Cincinnati.

Today’s Trivia Question:  What was the name of the street gang on the Newhart show set in Vermont?      (click here to respond to the  trivia question and please be sure to include with your answer your name, company, city and time zone. Only the second four correct responses from each time zone will be listed in tomorrow’s kudo list.)

Later — Cyn

Cynthia Turner’s Cynopsis
04/23/04  5:38am
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The Investigation Channel

A25-54 Viewers’ Ability To Remember Advertised Products
(#7 in cable)
YOUR SPOT = Great ROInvestigation

In the movie Face/Off, what does Erewhon
(the name for the floating prison) stand for?
Click this spot to enter
Click here for source

COURT TV:       
Forensic Fridays, Special:  Just the Facts Part 2
ABC             George Lopez, The Big House, Hope & Faith, Married to the Kellys [season finale], 20/20
CBS             Joan Of Arcadia, JAG, Without a Trace
FOX             Totally Outrageous Behavior, Totally Outrageous Behavior, The World’s Craziest Videos, The World’s Craziest Videos
NBC             Dateline NBC, Third Watch
PAX             MGM Night at the Movies: Four Weddings and a Funeral, Diagnosis Murder
UPN             Movie: The Specialist
WB              Reba [r], What I Like About You, Grounded for Life, Run of the House
TELE            Prisonera, El Alma Herida, Mujeres Apasionadas
UNIV            Mariana de la Noche, Bajo la Misma Piel, La Escuelita VIP

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