Friday, August 13th, 2004





Good morning. It’s Friday, August 13, 2004, and this is your first early morning briefing.

The Olympic theme song …. hum along with me now … Da, Da, Da Da Da Da, Dum Dum Da Dum Da Da Dum Dum Da Da Dum Dum …..  The 2004 Summer Olympics from Athens kick off tonight on NBC with the opening ceremonies, hosted by Bob Kostas and Katie Couric, beginning at 8pm. 202 Nations will participate in the Parade of Nations, including Iran, Afghanistan and Iraq. As is tradition, Greece will be the first nation into the Olympic Stadium.  Tradition also dictates the hosting nation is the last to enter the Stadium.  This year, the Greek flag will enter first, and the Greek athletes will enter last.  But the burning question is, as is also tradition, who will light the Olympic Cauldron? (I live for this stuff! Really!) Telemundo will carry an Olympic Preview from 7-8pm. Coverage on Saturday on NBC begins at Noon and continues until 6pm, picking up again at 8pm thru midnight.  The full schedule for all the NBC networks is available at where you can locate the television schedules by sport, network and find info on various athletes, countries, as well as results and medal counts.

NBC and Fox tied on Wednesday night, each delivering a 2.6/8 A18-49 according to Nielsen Media Research.  Fox essential won the 8pm hour with the first hour of the Teen Choice Awards (2.4/8), a tenth of a point ahead of NBC’s Most Outrageous Game Show Moments.  UPN’s Amish in the City drew a 1.8/6 A18-49, though better among female demos: 2.3/7 W18-49 (ranking #3 in the time period) and a 2.4/8 W18-34 (ranking #2 tied with ABC).  At 9pm Fox’s Teen Choice finished its 2-hour bcst with a 2.8/8, averaging a 2.6/8 for the entire broadcast. NBC’s L&O and CBS’ King of Queen (x2) tied at a 2.5/7 at 9pm.  UPN’s The Player earned a 1.0/3 A18-49, and a 1.4/4 among W18-34. NBC’s L&O owned the 10p hour with a 2.9/9.  ABC’s In the Jury Room (part 2) averaged a 1.7/5.
Craig Kilborn has decided to push on. Kilborn reportedly told his employer, CBS and Viacom, yesterday he has decided not to re-up, and will leave the show in early September, according to Variety. The network has been working on extending Kilborn’s deal for most of the summer. No news on who will step into the post-Letterman time period.

North Shore, Fox‘s summer-launched primetime soap/drama, has been given a full season pick up.  This is the second of the network’s four scripted summer series to get the nod – the other being Quintuplets.  Method & Red is still on the bubble; The Jury has not been picked up.  Simple Life will get another go as well. Thus far this season, North Shore has averaged a 2.1/7 A18-49 rating according to Nielsen Media Research.  Set to join the cast for a 3-ep arc is Shannon Doherty, with the possibility of extending her stay.

Nick-at-Nite and TBS/WGN will share the cable TV rights to Home Improvement in a six year deal which begins in 2007. Home Improvement is distributed by Buena Vista Television.  Nick also went on a bit of a buying spree, according to Variety, picking up the shared cable rights for Mad About You (shared with Oxygen, in a five year deal with shared fees of $32.8m), and the exclusive rights to The Nanny (5-yr deal, estimated at $34.8 million in fees).  Both shows are distributed by Sony Pictures TV.  Mad About You kicks in March 2006; The Nanny February 2009.  Both shows currently air on Lifetime.

NBC has signed a new 3-yr first-look deal with DreamWorks SKG for scripted and non-scripted programming for both the broadcast networks and the NBC cable networks.  This deal follows on the heals of a recently expired deal, through which NBC picked up its freshman series Las Vegas, as well as the upcoming Father of the Pride and Mark Burnett’s The Contender.  According to Hollywood Reporter, the deal includes NBC providing funding for series development as well as new office space on the NBC lot.

Top 10 M-F Syndicated Strip Series for the week of July 26 – August 1, 2004 ranked by HH Rtg
Wheel of Fortune (King World)                 7.3 AA  
Everybody Loves Raymond (King World)    6.1 AA / 7.6 GAA
Jeopardy (King World)                         6.0 AA
Seinfeld (Sony)                         5.6 AA / 6.8 GAA
Oprah (King World)                      5.6 AA / 5.7 GAA
Friends (Warner Bros.)                  5.2 AA / 6.2 GAA
Entertainment Tonight (Paramount)       4.3 AA / 4.4 GAA
Judge Judy (Paramount)          4.2 AA / 6.2 GAA
Dr. Phil (King World)                   4.0 AA / 4.0 GAA
Millionaire (Buena Vista)                       3.6 AA / 3.8 GAA
Source Nielsen Media Research

Top 10 M-F Syndicated Strip Series for the week of July 26 – August 1, 2004 ranked by A18-49
Seinfeld (Sony)                         4.0 AA / 4.8 GAA
Everybody Loves Raymond (King World)    3.6 AA / 4.4 GAA
Friends (Warner Bros.)                  3.6 AA / 4.1 GAA
Oprah (King World)                      2.4 AA / 2.4 GAA
That 70’s Show (Carsey-Werner)  2.4 AA / 3.0 GAA
King of Queens (Sony)                   2.1 AA / 2.4 GAA
Wheel of Fortune (King World)           2.0 AA
Entertainment Tonight (Paramount)       1.9 AA / 2.0 GAA
Cops (20th)                             1.9 AA / 2.3 GAA
Will & Grace (Warner Bros.)             1.9 AA / 2.3 GAA
Source Nielsen Media Research

Fall syndication launch dates of NEW STRIP series:
Jane Pauley Show (NBC Universal): August 30
Life & Style (Sony): September 13
The Tony Danza Show (Buena Vista): September 13
Home Delivery (NBC Universal): September 13
Larry Elders Show (Warner Bros.): September 13
Ambush Makeover (20th): September 13
Pat Croce: Moving In (Sony): September 13
Insider (Paramount): September 13
That’s Funny (October Moon): September 13
(Did I forget your new strip series? Email
with title and launch date, and check back here Monday)

A new half hour 12 episode series entitled here! Family is in the works through a joint venture between here! TV and And Baby magazine.  The series is debuting on here! TV in the November.  Here! Family will look at GLBT parenting from the time of conception and going forward, including different methods of conception, adoption issues, domestic partnership legalities, custody problems, gay family vacations, gay entertainment coverage and coming out to your children.  Michelle Darne, publisher of And Baby, will host the show; Michelle and Roberta Friedman (Magic Circle Media) are named exec producers.

Jimmy Smits is currently negotiating for a recurring role on The West Wing, as a Congressman from Texas.

Top 5 Broadcast Spanish Language Primetime Programs for the week of August 2-8, 2004
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Wed 8p)            20.2 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Amarte Es Mi Pecado (Thu 9p)           19.9 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Tue 8p)             19.6 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Mon 8p)            19.5 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Amarte Es Mi Pecado (Mon 9p)          19.5 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Thu 8p)             19.4 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 August 2-8, 2004
UPN     WWE Smackdown! (Thu 8p)                          5.8 NHTI HH Rtg
FOX     Simple Life 2 (Wed 9p)                                   5.4 NHTI HH Rtg
FOX     Simple Life 2 – Finale Special (Wed 930p)    5.2 NHTI HH Rtg
NBC     Law & Order: Criminal Intent (Sun 9p)           4.3 NHTI HH Rtg
FOX     Trading Spouses (Tue 8p)                             4.2 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 August 2-8, 2004 – highest rated primetime network programs in African American TV homes according to Nielsen Media Research
UPN     Girlfriends (Mon 9p)                      13.5 HH Rtg
UPN     Half & Half (Mon 830p)                  13.1 HH Rtg
UPN     Half & Half (Mon 930p)                  12.6 HH Rtg
UPN     One on One (Mon 8p)                    12.3 HH Rtg
CBS     Without a Trace (Thu 10p)              9.9 HH Rtg
ABC     My Wife & Kids (Wed 830p)            9.9 HH Rtg
CBS     CSI: Miami (Mon 10p)                     9.9 HH Rtg
CBS     CSI (Thu 9p)                                   9.3 HH Rtg
UPN     Eve (Tue 830p)                               9.0 HH Rtg
FOX     Trading Spouses (Tue 8p)              8.7 HH Rtg
Source Nielsen Media Research

Best quote of the week appears in today’s Variety in an interview with Fred Silverman who in May finished up a consultancy deal with ABC. Silverman compares the network business today to what it was 35 years ago:  “The standards for success are not what they were. When I was at the networks, if a show got a share less than 30, it was canceled. Now if you get a 30 share, they’ll build a monument for you.”

Nielsen ratings may be delayed today and over the weekend due to parts of Florida being evacuated for Hurricane Charley.

Don’t let that triskaidekaphobia thing get you down today. Besides, it’s nothing compared to these phobias:
bogyphobia – fear of the bogeyman
alektorophobia  – fear of chickens
coulrophobia  – fear of clowns, who are in fact scarey things
anemophobia – fear of draughts
aulophobia – fear of flutes
genuphobia – fear of knees

Wednesday, August 11, 2004. Fast National 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     5.6/10  Most Outrageous Game Show Moments #2 [r] 4.6/8, Law & Order [r] 5.8/10, Law & Order [r] 5.2/9

CBS     5.0/9   60 Minutes 5.2/9, King of Queens [r] 4.4/7, King of Queens [r] 4.7/8, 48 Hours 5.2/9

FOX     3.9/7   2004 Teen Choice Awards (OTO) 3.9/7

ABC     3.3/6   My Wife & Kids x2 [r] 4.2/8, The Drew Carey Show x2 [r] 2.9/5, In the Jury Room (OTO) 2.9/5

WB      2.0/3   Smallville [r] 1.8/3, Smallville [r] 2.2/4

UPN     2.1/4   Amish in the City 2.7/5, The Player 1.5/3

A18-49  NBC and Fox 2.6/8, CBS 2.2/7, ABC 1.9/6, UPN 1.4/4, WB 1.2/4



Warner Independent Pictures’ new drama starring

Mark Ruffalo
Laura Dern
Peter Krause
Naomi Watts

“One of the finest films to come out this year.” – LA Weekly

“A hot cast in a sizzling drama.” – Rolling Stone

Warner Bros. Movies Make Basic Better

Friday Fun Fact:  There are 119 groves on the edge of a quarter.  I’ve counted. I know.

The History Channel presents This Day in History:
1521:  Hernan Cortes captures both the great capital city of the Aztecs, Tenochtitlan, and the Aztec emperor, Cuauhtemoc.  It was the second time Cortes conquered the city.  After entering the city unopposed in 1519, Cortes withdrew in 1520 to confront a rival Spanish force.  When he returned, Cortes found his garrison threatened and was forced to make a costly retreat.  Aided by some native groups hostile to their Aztec rulers, Cortes destroyed the capital after its reconquest. 

Answer to Yesterday’s Trivia Question: When this airline first signed me to be their official spokesman, I have to say I think I made it pretty clear how much I resented the airline’s bringing all this tourist trade by my little island of solitude.  But then I got the hang of it, and enjoyed lounging in a director’s chair with sunglasses, or enjoying first class accommodations on the plane.  Who am I? THE QUANTAS KOALA.  Kudos to:  Julius Picardi-The Sporting News/NY; Tony Intelisano-Mark Anthony Ent/NY; Arthur Anderson-Fox Sports Net/NY; Jon Lohr-Thompson Everett/Glen Allen VA; Mark Edwards-KEZK Radio/St. Louis; Steve McDonald-KDAF/Dallas; Terry O’Reilly-Conus Comm/St. Paul; Ron Westrick-ND Television/Fargo; Dean Butler-Peak Moore Enterprises/Santa Monica; Phil Kellard-Drallek Inc/Pacific Palisades; Lucy Denny Gardner-King World/Santa Monica; Scott Freeman-Bunim Murray Prods/Van Nuys.

Today’s Trivia Question:  Who quoted this little Polish proverb: “Even though a man anoints himself with fragrant oils, he can still wind up with a broken face.”  (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.)


Court TV: The Investigation Channel’s
is on the case…

File it under: “Size matters”
Ted Nugent’s dressing room requirement includes a box of what?
Click here for answer

Check out for more exclusive dish on your favorite celebs…before it’s served up anywhere else!

Later — Cyn

Cynthia Turner’s Cynopsis
08/13/04  5:36am
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JOB OPENINGSR.ANALYST/AD SALES RESEARCH, Lifetime Television, NY. Solid bcst or cable research exp. Analyze rtgs & pgm perf. Knwldg of research systems a must. Email salary req:
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SITUATION WANTED:   MARKETING POSITION. Recent Graduate, currently working in business development,for TV station. Looking to get into marketing position or sales position.Willing to relocate.  Email:

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ABC             George Lopez [r], 8 Simple Rules [r], Hope & Faith [r], Less than Perfect [r], 20/20
CBS             AFI’s 100 Years … 100 Songs [r]
FOX             Man vs. Beast #1 [r], Man vs. Beast #2 [r]
NBC             2004 Olympic Summer Games (thru until midnight)
PAX             On the Cover, Balderdash, MGM Movie: Once Upon a Crime
UPN             Star Trek: Enterprise [r], Amish in the City [r]
WB              What I Like About You [r], Grounded for Life [r], Reba [r],
TELE            Prisonera, Gitanas, Protagonistas VIP
UNIV            Mariana de la Noche, Amarte es mi Pecado, La Escuelita VIP


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