Friday, August 6th, 2004





Good morning. It’s Friday, August 6, 2004, and this is your first early morning briefing.

WPP Group plc announced yesterday that Kantar, its information, insight and consultancy division, has conditionally agreed with VNU to form a 50/50 joint venture, combining the AGB Group and the non-US TV audience measurement services of Nielsen Media Research.  The joint venture, which will operate under the brand name AGB Nielsen Media Research, will offer television ratings in 30 countries across the Americas, Western and Eastern Europe, Asia Pacific and the Middle East including Australia, Belgium, China, Hungary, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Korea, Lebanon, Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, the Ukraine and the United Kingdom.  The board of directors will contain equal representation from Kantar and VNU and will include Eric Salama, CEO/Kantar and Michael P Connors, Chairman/CEO, VNU Media Measurement & Information.

Tony Danza will have a sidekick. You could call her an apprentice.  The Buena Vista Television show made the announcement yesterday that Ereka Vetrini will be Tony’s sidekick.  Not sure you recognize the name?  See if these clues help:  The Apprentice / frequent confrontations with Omarosa / native New Yorker.  Ringing any bells now?  Ereka’s duties will include introducing the show, chatting about news and trends with Tony at the top of the show, and be the show’s correspondent at various events – red carpet premieres, etc. The Tony Danza Show kicks off on September 13, airing live each day.

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart welcomes former President Bill Clinton to the set on Monday, August 9 at 11pm.  Let’s see if he has the same ratings impact on Stewart as he did on Letterman this past Tuesday night.

An interesting evening of bcst TV on Wednesday night – the final eps of Simple Life (Fox) and Next Action Star (NBC), original eps of Amish in the City, 60 Minutes and Quintuplets, and Law & Order just squeaks by a demo win over a repeat a of 48 Hours Mystery on CBS.  Overall, Fox takes the win with a 3.7/12 A18-49 rating for the night according to Nielsen Media Research.  Fox’s pairing of That 70’s Show and Quintuplets wins the 8p hour with a 3.0/10, followed by back to back repeats of My Wife & Kids on ABC (1.9/7), and a virtual tie between Amish in the City (UPN) with a 1.7/6 and 60 Minutes with 1.8/6. Next Action Star posted a soft 1.4/5.  Getting back to the Amish for a moment, the show found its largest audience among W18-49 (2.1/7 – ranking 4th) and W18-34 (1.9/7 – ranking #2 tied with ABC).  At 9p the double truck finish for Simple Life stole the show with a 4.4/13 A18-49, nearly doubling the share of its closest competition, King of Queens x2 (2.3/7). Among the younger set and women, Simple Life excelled:  5.2/17 among A18-34; 4.9/18 P12-17; and 6.1/19 W18-34. At 10p, Law & Order earned a 2.6/8, 48 Hours Mystery [r] a 2.2/7.  A special ep of 20/20 averaged a 2.0/6.

A few years ago, everyone was worried she’d grown weary of the talk show job and would call it a day.  Since that idea first surfaced, Oprah has renewed with King World on three separate occasions, taking her now through the 2010-2011 season. That will also be her 25th year in syndication. KW has also announced Oprah has been renewed in several O&O markets including WABC/NY, KABC/LA; WLS/Chicago; WPVI/Philadelphia; KGO/San Francisco; WTVD/Raleigh Durham; and KFSN/Fresno.  Beginning with the upcoming season, 2004-05, the number of first run eps will be increased by 10 (130 to 140) per season.

ABC Family has picked up Gilmore Girls and Smallville, (Warner Bros. Domestic Cable Distribution) both of which kick off the week of October 4 at 5p and 7p respectively. Kicking off the new hours will be six-hour marathons of each show – Smallville on 10/2 from 2-8p and Gilmore Girls the same night on Sunday the 3rd.

Joining in on WB‘s fun with Blue Collar TV, Comedy Central has acquired the repurposing rights (that’s what they call syndication rights before there are enough episode to syndicate) from Warner Bros. Domestic Cable Distribution.  To that end, included in the deal is CC get the exclusive off-net cable syndication rights if the show lasts long enough to syndicate (usually about 80-100 eps). According to Variety, Comedy will be spending in the neighborhood of $100k per episode, with hikes in the fee should the show achieve certain set ratings benchmarks on the WB. Comedy will air the repurposed eps on Mondays at 10p (repeating at midnight) starting on Monday. The WB premieres the eps on Thursdays at 8p.

Top 10 M-F Syndicated Strip Series for the week of July 19 – July 25, 2004 ranked by HH Rtg
Jeopardy (King World)                         9.6 AA
Wheel of Fortune (King World)                 8.5 AA  
Oprah (King World)                      6.1 AA / 6.2 GAA
Everybody Loves Raymond (King World)    5.8 AA / 7.3 GAA
Seinfeld (Sony)                         5.6 AA / 6.9 GAA
Friends (Warner Bros.)                  5.0 AA / 6.0 GAA
Judge Judy (Paramount)          4.5 AA / 6.5 GAA
Entertainment Tonight (Paramount)       4.4 AA / 4.6 GAA
Dr. Phil (King World)                   3.8 AA / 3.8 GAA
Millionaire (Buena Vista)                       3.8 AA / 4.0GAA
Source Nielsen Media Research

Top 10 M-F Syndicated Strip Series for the week of July 19 – July 25, 2004 ranked by A18-49
Seinfeld (Sony)                         3.8 AA / 4.6 GAA
Everybody Loves Raymond (King World)    3.3 AA / 4.0 GAA
Friends (Warner Bros.)                  3.3 AA / 4.0 GAA
Jeopardy (King World)                   3.0 AA
Oprah (King World)                      2.5 AA / 2.5 GAA
Wheel of Fortune (King World)           2.4 AA
That 70’s Show (Carsey-Werner)  2.1 AA / 2.7 GAA
Entertainment Tonight (Paramount)       2.0 AA / 2.0 GAA
Will & Grace (Warner Bros.)             1.9 AA / 2.3 GAA
Judge Judy (Paramount)          1.8 AA / 2.5 GAA
Source Nielsen Media Research

Until such time as Nielsen Local People Meters become so prevalent that we no longer need sweeps, it’s probably important we take a look at the July sweep results.  True, in past years this has not been an ‘important’ sweep – largely made up of repeats and tail end runs of poorly received series.  But this year things are different.  Fox launched its 12-month programming initiative with new scripted and reality series starting in June; more first run programming than ever before ran this summer, leaving less time for repeats (though there was still plenty).  Original scripted series this July made up 17% of Fox’s schedule, 10% of ABC and WB, and none on CBS, UPN, and NBC.  However, when you consider all programming including reality and specials, the picture changes dramatically — NBC has 51% original fare, Fox 48%, ABC 42%, UPN 30% and WB 16%.  That’s quite a bit of original programming, and worth now a moment to take a look at the July sweep:

  • A18-49:  CBS 2.5/8 (+4% in rtg vs. July 2003), Fox 2.3/8 (-4%), NBC 2.3/7 (-18%), ABC 1.9/6 (-5%), UPN 1.1/4 (flat year to year); WB 0.9/3 (-10%).    The Simple Life 2 on Fox was the #1 program for the sweep in this demo.
  • Total Viewers (HUT levels +3% vs. July 2003):  CBS 8.3m (+7%); NBC 6.3m (-16%); ABC 5.4m (-7%); Fox 5.3m (-10%); UPN 2.9m (Flat); WB 2.3m (-7%).
  • The single largest HUT level increase year to year was among Female Teens 12-17 (+12%):  Fox 2.0/8 (-13%); WB 1.6/6 (-6%); ABC 1.3/5 (-7%); UPN 1.5/2 (Flat); CBS 1.1/4 (Flat) and NBC 1.0/4 (-33%).

Source: Nielsen Media Research

TLC launches one of this season’s new series, America’s Ugliest, on October 24 at 9pm.  The show stars Trading Spaces designer-fans-love-to-hate Doug Wilson, and follows his search for some of the Ugliest kitchens, living rooms, bedrooms and baths, he can find and of course fix them up.  Four special eps have been ordered.

Attention golfers — No doubt you and your favorite putter have carved time out of your weekend to watch the 2004 PGA Championship on CBS, airing Saturday the 14th and on Sunday the 15th, from 2p-7p both days.  For those of you with HDTV, a special treat – for the first time CBS will broadcast this tournament in high definition and 5.1 digital surround sound.  This year’s event is held at Whistling Straits in Kohler, Wisconsin.

Development/Production/Casting Notes:

  • Kim Raver has joined the cast of Fox‘s 24 as potential love interest Audrey Raines to Jack Bauer.  Nestor Serrano has also been cast as a recurring character, as has Shohreh Aghdashloo and Louis Lombardi.
  • NBC and Paramount Network TV has signed on filmmaker John Sheridan and his daughter Naomi Sheridan to develop a series about a very Irish family running a restaurant in the US. Naomi Sheridan will write the script, and both Sheridans will exec prod., per Hollywood Reporter
  • .

  • Kate Walsh has been cast in the NBC midseason series The Men’s Room (NBC Studios)

Top 5 Broadcast Spanish Language Primetime Programs for the week of July 26 – August 1, 2004
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Mon 8p)             20.4 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Wed 8p)            20.2 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Tue 8p)             19.1 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Mariana de la Noche (Thu 8p)             18.8 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Don Francisco Presenta (Wed 10p)    18.6 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Amarte Es Mi Pecado (Wed 9p)          18.6 NHTI HH Rtg
UNIV    Amarte Es Mi Pecado (Mon 9p)          18.6 NHTI HH Rtg
Source: Nielsen Media Research
Note: NHTI Ratings are based on 10.57 million Hispanic TV Homes

Note: The African American television household rankings for July 26 – August 1, 2004 will be delayed according to Nielsen Media Research due to scheduling conflicts.  We will update you as soon as we have the new figures.

Casting Note: Fancy yourself a chef?  Always wanted your own restaurant? Consider this.  Fox is casting a new reality show, Hell’s Kitchen (working title) (Granada Entertainment/A. Smith & Co.) where wannabe chefs vie for the approval of Chef Gordon Ramsey. The winner gets his or her own restaurant.  Applications available at

John Skipper has been upped to EVP/Ad Sales, New Media and Consumer Products at ESPN.  John will add responsibilities of ESPN ABC Sports Customer Marketing and Sales to his current duties.  He reports to ESPN and ABC Sports President George Bodenheimer, and to Alex Wallau, President/ABC Network Ops and Admin in regard to Customer Marketing and Sales.

Wednesday, August 4, 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

CBS     5.7/10  60 Minutes 6.0/11, The King of Queens [r] 5.2/9, The King of Queens [r] 5.1/9, 48 Hours Mystery [r] 5.8/10

FOX     4.9/9   The 70’s Show [r] 3.9/7, Quintuplets 3.9/7, Simple Life 2 5.8/10, Simple Life 2 [season finale] 6.1/10

NBC     4.0/7   Next Action Star: Bet Your Life (movie – finale) 3.3/6, Law & Order [r] 5.5/10

ABC     3.6/6   My Wife and Kids [r] 4.0/7, My Wife and Kids [r] 4.1/7, Drew Carey  [r] 2.7/5, Drew Carey  [r] 2.5/4, 20/20 4.1/7

UPN     2.1/4   Amish in the City 2.8/5, The Player [r] 1.4/2

WB      1.5/3   Smallville [r] 1.5/3, Smallville [r] 1.6/3

A18-49  FOX 3.7/12, CBS 2.1/7, NBC 1.9/6, ABC 1.8/6, UPN 1.2/4, WB 1.0/3



#4 Primetime Program for the week!
(out of 100)

Top 10 Primetime Program for 13 weeks!

Top 15 Program for 25 weeks!

Available exclusively from
Warner Bros. Domestic Cable Distribution

Source: NTI Explorer, Week ranks= 9/22/03-8/1/04, excludes specials.  Rank based on HH Rating.

Friday Fun Fact: If every OREO cookie eaten in a given year were dunked, cows would have to work overtime to produce the extra 42.2 million gallons of milk needed to accommodate the extra dunkers.

The History Channel presents This Day in History:
1945:  The Japanese city of Hiroshima is incinerated by the first atomic weapon used in wartime.  The blast instantly destroyed four square miles of the city and at least 80,000 human beings.  Tens of thousands more died of wounds, burns, and radiation in the following weeks.

Answer to Yesterday’s Trivia Question: On what show was the new dance The Twizzle introduced by singer Jerry Lanning, playing the role of Randy Twizzle? THE DICK VAN DYKE SHOW.  Kudos to:  Justin Elmendorf-CNBC/NJ; Jim Wagner-Jim Wagner Design/NY; Tracy Visconti-MTVN/NY; Joel January-Alhurra TV/Springfield VA; Ken Foote-KTVT/Dallas; Mark Edwards-KEZK Radio/St. Louis; Stacey Killian Hagewood-Gospel Music Channel/Franklin TN; J.R. Martinez-KFWD/Dallas; Terrence Moss-Viacom/LA; Susan Goldberg-Beverly Park Prods/LA; Darlene Lieblich-Fox Cable Nets/LA; Miriam Bernath-CBC/Toronto; Sean Taylor-Comedy Central/Toronto.

Today’s Trivia Question:  What primetime tv character collects porcelain kitties and action figures? (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
08/06/04  5:16am
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JOB OPENINGBROADCAST PLANNER-BUYER/Blitz Media, Boston. Strong negotiator w/advanced knowledge of media options. Proficient in Excel. DRTV exp. preferred. Min 4 yrs. buying/planning exp. Email resume to

JOB OPENINGMTV Networks/FIELD MKTING DIRECTOR.  Develop/assist in all MTVN local mkting activities that support the affiliates field office objectives, and are aligned w/ASM strategies and goals.  Apply:

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JOB OPENINGRESEARCH ANALYST, Screenvision Cinema Network, NY:  2-4 years exp;  proficient with Nielsen and research resources.  Ability to analyze data and respond to requests.  Submit resumes to:

JOB OPENINGPRODUCER/SHOOTER for major cable network/NY. Starts immed; approx 8 wks. 5+ yrs exp in DV shooting/prod reality-docs. Show sensitivity to characters; build story arc. Email w/o attachments:

JOB OPENINGSENIOR ANALYST. Buena Vista TV Research, LA. 2+ yrs. Exp in synd, bcst or cable research. Proficient w/Nielsen Galaxy Explorer, WRAP Ovnts/Sweeps, MS Office. Resume to

JOB OPENINGAD & AFF MRKTING MGER/G4techTV-Los Angeles. Manage marketing and promotional opportunities to enhance G4’s partnerships with advertisers and cable operators. Min 4 yrs.exp. Email resume to

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JOB OPENINGCOORDINATOR, AFFILIATE MKTG, ABC, Burbank– Support VP & West region with station relations. Assist with promotions, mailings, web updates. Strong written & computer skills. Email resume:

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JOB OPENINGLINE PRODUCER, BROADCAST SCENIC DESIGN/NY. 5-7 yrs  producing/budgeting/client mgmt at net. Kwldg of scenic design process a +. Org, multi-tasker. Exc comm. & interpersonal skills. Resume:

JOB OPENINGAFFILIATE SALES COORDINATOR / OLN – Stamford, CT- Support affiliate sales in all aspects of database management and reporting. Email resume/salary

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Investigate this!

Court TV: The Investigation Channel’s

July Adults 25-54 Primetime Delivery +17%

Now that’s some great ROI:  Return on Investigation
Click here for source


COURT TV:       The I-Zone, Forensic Files, I, Detective
ABC             George Lopez [r], 8 Simple Rules [r], Hope and Faith [r], Less Than Perfect [r], 20/20
CBS             Joan of Arcadia [r], JAG [r], 48 Hours
FOX             The Bernie Mac Show [r], Method and Red [r], The Jury
NBC             Dateline NBC, Special: Miss Teen USA 2004
PAX             America’s Funniest Home Video, Balderdash, Movie: True Heart
UPN             Star Trek: Enterprise [r], Amish in the City [r]
WB              What I Like About You [r], Grounded for Life [r], Reba [r], Blue Collar TV [r]
TELE            Prisonera, Gitanas, Protagonistas VIP
UNIV            Mariana de la Noche, Amarte es mi Pecado, Cristina


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