Friday, August 5th, 2011


Good morning. It’s Friday, August 5, 2011, and this is your first early morning briefing.  As always, if you prefer to watch this morning’s news instead of reading it, click here .

Tonight’s Premieres:
NBC: Friends With Benefits at 8p
OWN: Extraordinary Acts of Courage at 10p
IFC: Whisker Wars at 11p

Tonight’s Finale:
Bravo: Platinum Hit at 8p

Saturday’s Premieres:
Cooking Channel: Hungry Girl at 4p
Nat Geo WILD:  The Invaders: Pigzilla at 10p
BBC America: Friday Night Dinner at 1130p

Sunday’s Premieres:
Food Network: Hungry Girl at 10a
Discovery Channel: Curiosity at 8p
Animal Planet: Hillbilly Handfishin’ at 10p

Sunday’s Finales:
TNT: Falling Skies at 9p
TLC: My Strange Addiction at 10p
USA Network: In Plain Sight at 10p
E!: Ice Loves Coco at 1030p
Bravo: Watch What Happens: Live at 11p


When Cycle 17 of America’s Next Top Model makes a comeback on The CW this fall, the show reunites its first-ever All-Star cast featuring fourteen contestants from previous seasons competing for the grand prize.  Hosted by Tyra Banks, America’s Next Top Model launches Cycle 17 September 14 at 9p.  Banks also heads the panel of judges which includes fashion editor Andre Leon Talley and photographer Nigel Barker; Jay Manuel is the creative director and Miss J. Alexander is the runway trainer.  This season several guest celebrity judges make appearances including Nicki Minaj, Kathy Griffin, LaToya Jackson and Ashlee Simpson among others.

Fridays this fall on Travel Channel offer viewers a paranormal pair of shows.  Beginning September 23 at 10p, new original investigative series The Dead Files opens with eight episodes following a detective and a psychic communicator who individually explore a crime scene then the duo meets up to compare notes to solve the mystery.  Also starting September 23 at 9p is the fifth season of Ghost Adventures featuring an investigative team exploring locations filled with dark history and trapped souls.  Both series are produced for Travel Channel with one-hour series The Dead Files from Painless Productions and Ghost Adventures from MY Tupelo Entertainment.

This Sunday night at 8p, Discovery Channel premieres new series Curiosity with a simulcast happening on other Discovery Networks including TLC, Animal Planet, Science, Planet Green, Investigation Discovery and Fit & Health.  The opening episode features Professor Stephen Hawking as he asks the question: did God create the universe?  Following at 9p, Discovery Channel presents The Creation Question: A Curiosity Conversation a special roundtable discussion consisting of famous theologians and scientists hosted by David Gregory of NBC’s Meet the Press. This special will be simulcast on Discovery Channel, TLC and Science.  The special is produced by Peacock Productions and the inaugural episode of Curiosity is produced by Darlow Smithson for Discovery Channel. 

On Monday, TeleFutura Network premieres a new drama series, El Ultimo Matrimonio Feliz (The Last Happy Marriage) about five women and their desire to find happiness in their marriages, careers and family life.  The series opens at 9p on TeleFutura Network. 

Showtime said yesterday at the TV Critics Association press tour its new comedy series House of Lies, starring Don Cheadle and Kristen Bell debuts January 8 at 10p, sandwiched between the season premieres of Shameless and Californication.

For the first time in the US, PBS will premiere the British period police drama series, George Gently beginning early next year, cites THR.  George Gently stars Martin Shaw as a tough Scotland Yard detective relocated to northern England set in the 1960s.  The series is produced by Company Pictures for the BBC and broadcast rights to the show will be managed in the US by Acorn Media which released the first three seasons on DVD in North America.  George Gently is based on a series of crime novels by Alan Hunter.


Arts culture network, Ovation HD has launched on Comcast Cable in Nashville.  Ovation HD began in fall 2010 and is now available in nearly 6 million subscribers on Comcast in Chicago, Boston, New England and other markets.

UK’s Channel 4 picked up the UK premiere broadcast rights to upcoming CBS comedy series 2 Broke Girls from Warner Bros. International Television Distribution.  The series is written by Michael Patrick King and stand-up comedian Whitney Cummings.


Steve Carell is going into production work with Showtime, serving as executive producer on the new comedy series, Laughing Stock.  Hosted by David Steinberg, Laughing Stock is a half-hour interview series highlighting one-on-one interviews delving into the art of comedy with Jerry Seinfeld, Tina Fey, Larry David, Mel Brooks, Carl Reiner, Ellen DeGeneres and Judd Apatow.  Steinberg also is executive producer of the 10-episode series.  Showtime will roll out the series in 2012. 

Maria Menounos inked a multi-year agreement with Telepictures giving her a trio of duties.  Menounos will become co-host of syndicated entertainment news show Extra along with Mario Lopez, she’ll have on-air duties with the upcoming series Dr. Drew’s Lifechangers and she will further develop new projects where she will serve as host and executive producer.  Dr. Drew’s Lifechangers debuts on The CW September 19.

Production kicks off the first half of this month on a fifth season of FUEL TV Presents Camp Woodward.  The new season returns to Camp Woodward in Woodward, PA and brings back a dozen skateboarding and BMX athletes from previous seasons in a new format as they divide into two teams and battle each other in various challenges.  FUEL TV, part of Fox Sports Media Group, premieres the series’ new season in February 2012 airing over eight weeks.

Casting Call: Mnet, the 24/7 English-language network showcasing Asian pop culture is casting for an English-speaking K-pop VJ to host a new daily two-hour K-pop television series debuting on the network this fall.  The national search invites all K-pop fans to apply. No prior television experience is needed though candidates should have loads of energy and personality-plus and also have a large knowledge of everything K-pop.  Applicants can upload audition videos via YouTube and send the link along with name, age, address and daytime telephone number to [email protected]. Deadline for entries is August 12. The audition videos must be less than five minutes in length and include: an introduction including name, age and residence city of applicant; why the applicant would make a good VJ; applicant’s favorite K-pop artists; a song and dance routine from applicant’s favorite K-pop artist; and anything else that will make the applicant stand out.  Selected applicants will be invited to an in-person audition in Los Angeles on August 20 and five finalists will be chosen. will post the finalist’s audition videos for fans to vote on their favorite VJ as the final decision will be influenced by fans’ votes.  The final selected applicant will receive a contract from Mnet and will need to be available to film at the network’s studios in L.A.


Broadcast Morning News Shows – Weekly Average Ratings (week of July 25, 2011)
NBC: Today 5.05 million total viewers; 1.8/15 and 2.26 million A25-54
ABC: GMA 4.33 million total viewers; 1.3/13 and 1.62 million A25-54
CBS: Early Show 2.25 million total viewers; 0.7/6 and 862,000 A25-54
Source: Nielsen, NTI

Broadcast Late-Night Shows – Weekly Average Ratings (week of July 25, 2011)
NBC: Tonight Show 3.64 million total viewers; 1.1 and 1.43 million A25-54; 0.9 and 1.13 million A18-49
ABC: Nightline 3.86 million total viewers; 1.2 and 1.50 million A25-54; 0.9 and 1.19 million A18-49
CBS: Late Show 2.92 million total viewers; 0.9 and 1.16 million A25-54; 0.7 and 869,000 A18-49
Source: Nielsen, NTI

Wednesday A18-49 Analysis:   FOX outpaced the competition Wednesday by delivering a 1.8/6 among the A18-49 viewers, according to final national ratings from Nielsen.  CBS and Big Brother won at 8p with a 2.5/8 and FOX’s So You Think You Can Dance trailed in second place at 1.8/6.  NBC did best at 9p with America’s Got Talent at 2.5/7 while FOX’s So You Think You Can Dance and Univision’s new La Fuerza del Destino tied for #2 at 1.8/5 each.  Then at 10p, Univision’s La Rosa de Guadalupe topped at 1.6/5 and NBC followed with a 1.4/4 for Love in the Wild.

Live + Same Day Household Ratings: Wednesday, August 3, 2011  time period averages.  Source: NTI, Galaxy as dated. Live+SD.

CBS: 4.0/7       Big Brother 4.2/7, Criminal Minds [r] 4.0/7, CSI [r] 3.8/7


NBC: 3.8/7       Minute to Win It 2.9/5, America’s Got Talent 5.8/10, Love in the Wild 2.9/5

FOX: 3.4/6         So You Think You Can Dance 3.4/6

ABC: 2.9/5         The Middle [r] 2.8/5, Modern Family [r] 2.8/5, Modern Family [r] 2.8/5, Happy Endings [r] 1.8/3, Primetime Nightline: Beyond Belief 3.5/6

UNIV: 2.1/4        Teresa 2.2/4, La Fuerza del Destino 2.2/4, La Rosa de Guadalupe 2.0/3

ION: 0.7/1          Without a Trace 0.7/1, Without a Trace 0.7/1, Criminal Minds 0.8/1

CW: 0.6/1           America’s Next Top Model [r] 0.6/1, America’s Next Top Model [r] 0.7/1

TELE: 0.4/1          Mi Corazon Insiste 0.5/1, Flor Salvaje 0.6/1, ESP: Futbol Estelar: Unam vs. Monterrey 0.2/0

TF: 0.3/0             Futbol Liga Mexicana: America vs. Est. Tecos 0.3/1, Concacaf L.D.C.: CD Olimpia vs. Santos Laguna 0.2/0

A18-49:  FOX 1.8/6, CBS 1.7/5, NBC 1.7/5, UNIV 1.7/5, ABC 1.3/4, TELE 0.4/1, CW 0.3/1, ION 0.3/1, TF 0.3/1



AMC Networks Inc. revealed its senior management team following the company’s recent spin-off from Cablevision Systems Corporation on June 30:

  • Josh Sapan serves as President/CEO.  He has been with the company for nearly 25 years, joining the former Rainbow Media Holdings in 1987 as President of AMC and Bravo.
  • Ed Carroll is COO and was named to this position in January 2009 when the company was Rainbow Media Holdings.
  • Sean Sullivan is CFO and he joined the company from HiT Entertainment in 2010.
  • Jamie Gallagher is General Counsel and has been with the company since 2008, starting as EVP/General Counsel. 
  • John P. Giraldo is Chief Accounting Officer in charge of accounting and financial reporting.  He joins from Scholastic Corporation.

David Lyle, former president of Fox LOOK, joined National Geographic Channels US as CEO.  David’s position takes effect immediately and news of his appointment was released by the National Geographic Channels board, to whom he will report.  Over the last several months, David has been working with the National Geographic management team as head of West Coast development.  In his new position, David will oversee the domestic channels National Geographic Channel (NGC), Nat Geo WILD and Nat Geo Mundo.  David will be based in Washington, D.C. and Steve Schiffman, National Geographic Channels President will report to him.

FremantleMedia tapped Monica Galer to become President of FremantleMedia France, a newly created role beginning September 1.  Monica had previously worked in a dual position for the company as CEO, Northern and Southern Europe and as CEO, FremantleMedia France for the last two years.

Travel Ad Network (TAN) hired Ali Kellerman to the newly-minted role as Senior Manager/Custom Media Solutions.  Prior to this appointment, Ali was with Glam Media as Product Marketing Manager/Social Media.

Millennium Sales & Marketing, a unit of Katz Television Group upped three to the role of VPs/Sales Managers: Kim Ryer based in Atlanta; Wolfgang Liebertz in Miami; and Thomas Caffrey in Philadelphia. 

PBS added two executives to focus on primetime content strategy.  Beth C. Hoppe joins at the end of August and Donald Thoms begins next Monday, both as VPs/Programming, General Audience.  Beth and Donald will report to John F. Wilson, PBS SVP and Chief TV Programming Executive.  Most recently, Beth was Executive Producer at Discovery Studios and prior to that she was President/CEO of Optomen Productions.  Since 2009, Donald was President of ThomsMediaGroup (TMG) where he managed the multimedia consulting firm.

Showtime Networks restructured its marketing and creative services department and in so doing promoted several executives:

  • Frank Pintauro advances to EVP/Red Group where he will manage the network’s in-house agency.  Frank reports to Matthew Blank, Showtime Networks’ Chairman/CEO.
  • Donald Buckley upped to EVP/Program Marketing and Digital Services to supervise the marketing divisions as well as media, consumer promotions and digital media. He reports to Matt Blank.
  • Sharon Allen elevated to SVP/Program Marketing and Advertising, reporting to Donald Buckley.
  • George DeBolt as SVP/Media and Promotions will also report to Donald Buckley.
  • Jamie Dienstag as VP/Creative and Marketing Operations and Administration will jointly report to Frank Pintauro and Donald Buckley.

Showtime Networks also announced a reorganization of research, scheduling and affiliate marketing where Kim Lemon as SVP/Research, Program Planning and Scheduling will now report to David Nevins, President/Entertainment, Showtime Networks Inc. and Laura Palmer as SVP/Distributor Marketing will now report to Tom Christie, EVP/Affiliate Sales, Showtime Networks Inc.



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Friday Fun Fact: 
Rev. Jesse Jackson, during an interview on NBC-TV’s Meet the Press in June 1988, remarked, “There’s nothing wrong with having a big ego. It’s all right to have a Rolls Royce ego so long as you don’t have a bicycle brain. If they coordinate, you can work it out pretty well.”

This day in History:    1884 – On Bedloe’s Island in New York Harbor, the cornerstone for the Statue of Liberty was laid.

Answer to Yesterday’s Trivia Question: Who said this out of frustration:   “Oh, yeah, what are you gonna do? Release the dogs? Or the bees? Or the dogs with bees in their mouth and when they bark, they shoot bees at you?”  HOMER SIMPSON  Kudos to: Jack Goldenberg-Einstein da Vinci & Goldenberg/NJ, William Mullin-Verizon FiOS tV/VA, Michael Raskin-Eagle TV Sales/NY; Corey Chu-NBC Universal/NY; Joanna Kuebel-Entertainment Studios/Chicago; Dan Radman-Busch Media Group/St. Louis; Lynn Fraker-The Richards Group/Dallas; Freddie Farid/Chicago; Brian Lazarus-MTV/Santa Monica; Sterling Gates-Brightest Day/LA; Pricilla Crowe-Prospect Park/LA; Bob Gillan-Brownstone Entertainment/LA

Today’s Trivia Question:   This slogan was used by this service years ago – but you may hear it again this fall in primetime on a new series:  “Live today.  Tomorrow will cost more.”  Who was the advertiser?  (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone. Unofficial rules: Only the second four correct answers from each time zone will be mentioned; and once you’ve been mentioned in any of the Cynopsis editions, you can’t be mentioned again that calendar week.)

Later — Cyn

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INTERNSHIPS – These positions are for credit only – nobody gets paid here. These ads are always posted for free, and students work for school credit only. For more information on the specs for posting an Internship ad, email Trish at [email protected].

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SITUATION WANTED ADS, POSTED BY THOSE LOOKING TO BE HIRED …  There is no charge for placing your Situation Wanted ad … for more information contact Trish Pihonak at [email protected]

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E-mail [email protected]  or call Trish Pihonak at 203.381.9096 for rates and specs for Job Openings.

Are you looking for a job? Post your Situation Wanted Ad here — Email [email protected]  for specs.



ABC:   Shark Tank [r], Primetime: What Would You Do? [R], 20/20
AZTECA:  Cosas de la Vida, Al Extremo, La Loba
CBS:  Flashpoint, CSI: NY [r], Blue Bloods [r]
CW:   Nikita [r], Supernatural [r]
FOX:  Bones [r], House [r]
ION:   Without a Trace, Without a Trace, Criminal Minds
NBC: Friends with Benefits [p ], Friends with Benefits, Dateline NBC
PBS:  Washington Week, Need to Know, Live from Lincoln Center [r]
TELE: Mi Corazon Insiste, Flor Salvaje, La Casa de la Lado
UNIV: Teresa, La Fuerza del Destino, Rosa de Guadalupe

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