Tuesday, April 5th, 2005



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Source: NTI Galaxy Explorer, 3/21-3/27/05, HH Rtg.



Good morning.  It’s Tuesday, April 5, 2005, and this is your first early morning briefing.

WWE and USA Network are back together again.  Yesterday at NCTA, WWE and NBC Universal announced they have signed off on a 3-year agreement that brings WWE back to USA beginning in October 2005.  Programming will include Monday Night RAW, which actually began back in 1993 on USA where it lived for 7 years before migrating to TNN/Spike TV.  Other programming will include a weekend hour of RAW-branded programming, and Telemundo will air a Spanish-language version of RAW.  Additionally, NBC will air a minimum of two 90m Saturday latenight RAW specials.

Coming to Fox on April 25 is a backdoor pilot/special called Marriage 911.  Think Nanny 911 for couples.  In fact, you’ll meet this couple on Nanny 911 the week prior, April 18, when they are looking for help with their unruly kids.

Tonight’s Finale:
WB:     The Starlet at 9p

Season Finale Date:
CBS:  JAG on April 29 at 9p – Note:   This is a series finale.
CBS:  Joan of Arcadia on April 22 at 8p
ABC:  Jake in Progress on April 21 at 830p
ABC:  Little House on the Prairie finale on April 23 at 8p


Britney Spears and her new husband Kevin Federline will be the newest newlyweds on television with UPN‘s new series set to bow next month.  Thus far, UPN has ordered six episodes which according to Variety will chronicle the pairs courtship, engagement and wedding.  The ‘historical’ footage comes from the couple’s own videocams, as they tell their story of their lives together.  The show is also likely to be repurposed to one of Viacom sister cable nets, either MTV or VH1.



  • Red and Blue (Touchstone TV/Shady Acres) , a comedy project, has cast Annie Potts as a grandmother.  A grandmother!?!  In any case, the comedy is about an extended family made up of liberals and conservatives, all living in the same house.
  • Untitled Holly Hester (NBC Universal TV/Conaco Prods) starring Brenda Blethyn middle-aged woman who suddenly decides to make a change in her picture-perfect family life, gets divorced and gets a job, has cast Erin Hershey Presley has her young neighbor.


  • Dirtbags (20th) comedy revolves around a group of twentysomething friends blue-collar suburb of Boston, some of whom have never left and others who have ventured out and returned, stars Melissa Joan Hart and recently added to the cast is Stephanie Lemelin.


  • Early Birds (NBC Universal TV/3 Arts) has added Renee Taylor as part of the retirement community where our young star writer (Timm Sharp), recently fired from his job, has chosen to live. 
  • Four Kings (Warner Bros. TV/KoMut) has added Kiele Sanchez who joins Seth Green, Todd Grinnell and Jonah Lotan in this comedy about three lifelong friends living in NYC.


  • South Beach (Paramount Network TV/Flame Ent/Nuyorican) has added Vanessa Williams to the cast which already includes Marcus Coloma.  This is a drama about three adults who wind up living in the sexy and dangerous world of Miami’s south beach
  • 20 Things to Do Before You’re 30 (Touchstone/Tiger Aspect) has made its first cast announcement with Liz Vassey in this comedy about four twentysomething friends who create a list of 20 things they want to do before they are 30 and set out to accomplish them
  • Talk Show Diaries (Touchstone TV/Coquette) about the brutally honest, fiercely loyal and incredibly complex on- and off-camera exploits of the three female hosts of a morning talk show, has cast Tami Roman as one of the three talk show hosts along with previous cast Nancy Travis and Kathleen Rose Perkins; and filling in the backstage characters are Richard T. Jones and Brad Rowe.  


  • Bow (Touchstone TV) has added Alan Dale in this comedy starring Bow Wow as himself, a rap singer who’s coming of age and taking control of his business.

SciFi Channel:

  • Eureka (USACE) has added Greg Germann as the town mayor.  The project is about a town made up of brainiacs, in sort of a community think tank.  Colin Ferguson was previously cast as the town’s Sheriff.


The Lance Krall Show will debut on Spike TV beginning April 18 at 11:05p.  The series was created, written, directed and exec produced by Krall, in addition to being its star.

NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution‘s weekly political series The Chris Matthews Show has been picked up in 90% of the country for next season. Among groups clearing the show are the NBC O&O stations, Hearst-Argyle, Gannett, Scripps, Belo, Raycom, Young and others. 

ABC News will launch ABC News Now, a multimedia news initiative that includes 24-hour news channel ABC News Now, and video-on-demand reports from all ABC News broadcasts.  The all digital suite of news content is tailored for distribution via multiple media platforms, including cable, satellite, broadband, and wireless, providing more than 50 hours of live and VOD programming monthly. At launch the ten ABC O&O stations are committed to providing local news content and resources to this programming venture which debuts in July 2005.  Announcements of additional ABC affiliates contributing to the content are also expected.

National Geographic Channel (NGC) will re-air Inside the Vatican this coming Saturday, April 9 at 6p ET.

Joining the lineup at SOAPnet are two off-net limited series, set to premiere within the net’s Dysfunctional Family Night block, debuting April 30.  The two new acquisitions are Skin, a Jerry Bruckheimer modern-day Romeo & Juliet drama which made its network debut on Fox in 2003.  The Monroes originally aired on ABC in 1995 and stars William Devane and Susan Sullivan in a lavish primetime soap set in Washington DC.  Skin airs at 10p; The Monroes at 11p.  The block will air from 7p-12m and begins with Dallas, Knots Landing and Dynasty.

AOL founder Steve Case, now CEO of Revolution, has announced its acquisition of the Wisdom Media’s television/radio network, dedicated to the health and wellness market.  Revolution plans to develop and expand Wisdom into a new, multi-platform lifestyle company.  Wisdom Media is currently distributed by Echostar and Comcast as a digital cable network and a Video On Demand service, by Sirius Satellite Radio as a radio channel, and online. It was launched in 1998 by Bill Turner as a brand devoted to health, wellness, and personal development.

Note to Self:  PBS rebroadcasts Manor House starting again tonight.  A reality show where the reality is Edwardian times, and the winner(s) are those who have the tenacity to see the project through to its end, and not everyone is a winner.  No cash, no cars, no sneakers, no potato chips, and not a single rose in sight.  Good stuff. 


Geoff Wells has joined Fox Television Stations, Inc. as VP/Chief Information Officer.  Geoff makes the move to Fox from ABC where he had been since 1985.  He assumes his new responsibilities at Fox immediately.

TV One upped Michelle Rice to SVP/National Accounts and Affiliate Marketing. She will be responsible for strategy development, negotiations for the network’s corporate distribution growth and corporate affiliate relationships as well as manage TV One’s overall affiliate marketing strategy and efforts.  Michelle was previously VP of distribution strategy and operations.

Playboy Enterprises, Inc. has announced four exec changes within Playboy Entertainment Group:  Craig Simon upped to EVP/Sales and Affiliate Relations; Gary Rosenson has been promoted to SVP/Sales and Affiliate Marketing, overseeing distribution and affiliate marketing in the U.S. domestic cable television market.  Michael Nagle has been named VP/National Accounts and will work with top-level cable executives to drive distribution, while also playing a significant role in determining the Entertainment Group’s business strategy.  In addition, he will manage the Pay TV group in Playboy’s New York office; and Mark Rubin has joined the Playboy Entertainment Group as the new Director/Satellite and Special Markets, responsible for the company’s US DBS relationships with DIRECTV, Echostar, VOOM and XM Radio as well as related distribution relationships in the US and Canada. 

Discovery Networks International has upped Luis Silberwasser to the new position of SVP/General Manager for U.S. Hispanic Networks.  He will oversee the Spanish-language Discovery service’s development and growth in the US Hispanic market for marketing, programming, ad sales and network operations (includes Discovery en Espanol, Discovery Kids en Espanol and Discovery Travel & Living/Viajar y Vivir).  Luis was previously SVP of international strategic planning for Discovery Networks International.  He will be based in Miami.

Stuart “Red” Martin, one of the founders of WCAX TV in Jericho, Vermont, the state’s largest and oldest TV station, has died at the age of 91.  Martin had been with the station since before it went on the air in 1954.  He was president of Mount Mansfield Television, which owns the CBS affiliate. The station is still family owned, and up until three weeks ago, Martin drove himself to the office regularly. A funeral service will be held at 11am Wednesday at St. Paul’s Cathedral in Burlington.


Sunday – A18-49 Analysis:  As you might expect, ABC delivered the goods on Sunday night, according to fast affiliate numbers from Nielsen Media Research, with an overall 6.8/18 A18-49.  NBC was #2 with just one third the audience share, posting a 2.7/6, followed by Fox 2.4/6, CBS 2.3/6, WB 1.0/3.  At 7p AFV on ABC won the hour with a 2.6/9, while CBS, NBC and Fox all offered up a 6 share. EM: Home Edition earned a solid 5.8/15 at 9p, well away from Fox and CBS, both tied at #2 with an 8 share, The Contender on NBC a 7 share. An original Desperate Housewives returns with a 10.7/24 A18-49, and the second outing of Grey’s Anatomy was up by a share point week to week with a 7.9/19.

Fast Affiliate Ratings:  Sunday, April 3, 2005, for all Networks – time period averages.  Source: Nielsen Media Research. 

ABC     10.0/16  AFV 5.0/9, EM: Home Edition 8.7/14, Desperate Housewives 14.7/22, Grey’s Anatomy 11.4/18

CBS     6.6/11   60 Minutes 6.7/12, Cold Case 9.5/15, Movie: John Q 5.1/8

NBC     5.7/9    Dateline 4.9/9, The Contender 3.6/6, L&O: CI 8.0/12, Crossing Jordan 6.5/10

FOX     3.2/5    King/Hill [r] 2.3/4, Malcolm 2.8/5, Simpsons 4.5/7, Arrested Development 3.4/5, Simpsons 3.4/5, Sketch Show 2.7/4

WB      1.4/2    Charmed [r] 1.3/2, Charmed [r] 1.5/2, Steve Harvey[r] 1.4/2

A18-49                ABC 6.8/18, NBC 2.7/6, Fox 2.4/6, CBS 2.3/6, WB 1.0/3


Pop quiz from Court TV: The Investigation Channel!

Which method of communication do Court TV viewers prefer?
a. carrier pigeon
b. smoke signals
c. mime
d. morse code
e. none of the above

The History Channel presents This Day in History:
1994 – Kurt Cobain, one of rock music’s most reluctant superstars, takes his life in Seattle, Washington

Answer to Yesterday’s Trivia Question: This :60 second ad from Ally & Gargano ad agency if slowed to normal time could have been at least a couple of minutes long.  It was the first of a series of spots launched in 1982.  The lead character in the ad was known as Mr. Spleen. What was this ad and who was Mr. Spleen? THE FED-EX FAST TALKER, played by John Moschitta, Jr.  Kudos to: Ed Kukla-Ed Kukla Cinematography/Detroit; Emily Wheaton-Horse Country Real Estate/Brooklyn CT; Jonathan Spaet-Time Warner Cable/NY; Fred Silverman-Silverman Productions/Miami; Dan Whitford-RPA/Chicago; David Ferber-KTTC and KXLT/Rochester MN; Barbara Pointer-Dr. Pepper, Pepsi/Abilene; Bill Goodfriend-Charter Adv/St. Louis; David Jones-Marleigh Ent/LA; Chris Howells-Paulist Prods/Pacific Palisades; Jillian Sterling-KCBS/LA; Nalinya Davis-SAG/LA; and Jeri Sacks-Granada Int’l/London office.


Cell phones are actually the method of choice for Court TV: The Investigation Channel viewers.  38% have text messaging, with Internet access among the top features; 45% are more likely to spend $200+ on their cell phone bills.  Visit www.courttvmediakit.com for more facts and figures.

Simmons Fall 2004 NCS Adult Full Year Study

Today’s Trivia Question:
  On the 1990 series H.E.L.P. starring David Caruso and Wesley Snipes, what did the title acronym stand for?  (click here 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
04.05.05 5:22am

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JOB OPENING:  AFFILIATE MKTG MGR/Jericho, NY. Strategic mktg support for the Rainbow Networks affil sales dept. Client service, project mgmt, comm skills exp/skills w/knowledge of cable industry.Apply:

JOB OPENING:  SR. COORDINATOR AD SALES MARKETING /Hallmark Channel NY: Support day to day activities and projects. Must have min. 2 yrs exp. See full posting at www.hallmarkchannel.com . Send resumes:

JOB OPENING: MGR-INT’L CONSUMER PRODUCTS (Home Video/Audio/Interactive)/NY. Day-to-day resp. for Int’l Video/Interactive/Audio Businesses. 3-4 yrs consumer prod, mktg, project mgmt, account mgmt exp req. Apply: www.mtvncareers.com.  (4/9)

JOB OPENING: MGR SALES PROMOTIONS – NCC, NY or LA. Seeks mktg/promo expert to dvlp strategic solutions for cable advertisers. 5+ yrs exp in mktg, sales & media pref. Travel req. Email:

JOB OPENING: DIRECTOR-AD SALES/THE U, NY. Startup developing DVD mag. with 2 MM circ. seeks sales leader! 3-5 yrs ad sales,youth oriented OOH media exp. Resume/sal req:
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JOB OPENING:  MANAGER, RESEARCH, FOX Broadcasting/NY. 4+ yrs res exp, w/cable or broadcast net. Strong analytical/strategic thinker; exc comm/writing; qual+quant ; knowledge of Nielsen, Galaxy, etc. Apply: www.foxcareers.com. (4/8)

JOB OPENING:  ASSOCIATE RESEARCH DIRECTOR -MediaVest/NY.  Strong analytical & comm skills, knwldg of syndicated media research systems. Managerial & client mgmt exp a must. 8+ yrs needed. Resume:

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ABC              My Wife & Kids [r], George Lopez [r], According to Jim [r], Rodney, Blind Justice
CBS              NCIS [r], Amazing Race, Judging Amy
FOX              American Idol, House [r]
NBC              Will & Grace [r], Scrubs [r], Scrubs, The Office, Law & Order: SVU [r]
PAX              Young Blade, Lie Detector, Diagnosis Murder
UPN              All of Us [r], Eve [r], Veronica Mars
WB               Gilmore Girls [r], The Starlet [F]
TELE             La Mujer en el Espejo, Los Platedos, La Ley del Silencio
UNIV             Apuesta por un Amor, La Madrastra, Casos de la Vida Real

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