Tuesday, January 20th, 2004



Good morning. It’s Tuesday, January 20, 2004, and this is your first early morning briefing coming to you from the NATPE Convention in Las Vegas.

ABC was off by just one tenth behind NBC on Friday night among A18-49 according to Nielsen Media Research.  NBC led with a 3.0/9, ABC 2.9/9, followed closely by CBS 2.6/8, Fox 2.2/7, WB 1.2/4, UPN 0.6/2.  At 8pm CBS led with Joan of Arcadia (just renewed for next season) with a 3.1/10.  NBC’s Dateline was #2 with a 2.9/9.  ABC’s first hour of their TGIF lineup (all repeats) delivered a 2.6/8 with Fox’s reality block close behind (2.5/8). At 9p, the second hour of TGIF on ABC led with a 2.9/8, just three tenths ahead of CBS’s 2.6/8 for JAG, which in turn beat NBC by a share point.  Boston Public on Fox earned a 1.9/6.   At 10p, NBC’s Third Watch delivered a 3.7/11, beating ABC’s 20/20 (3.2/9) and CBS’ The Handler (1.9/6).

Isn’t it remarkable that all these years Fox has continued to run the same schedule on Saturday night, and even when the Big 3 schedule premieres or major theatricals opposite it, Fox still rules Saturday night.  This past Saturday Fox earned a 3.1/9 A18-49 rating according to Nielsen Media Research, followed by ABC 2.6/8, CBS and NBC tying with 1.9/6.  At 8pm Fox led with a 3.1/10 for the hour beating the ABC Disney movie 8-9p (2.6/9) as well as Star Search’s premiere (2.0/6) and the first hour of the NBC movie (1.5/5).  At 9p, ABC did come back to inch out Fox with Liar Liar movie by a share (3.4/10 vs. 3.0/9).  At 10p CB and NBC tied with a 2.3/7, while Monk’s debut back on ABC earned a 1.9/6.

According to fast affiliate ratings from Nielsen Media Research, Fox won about as big as the Carolina Panthers on Sunday night, pulling a monster 14.4/33 A18-49 rating from 7-10p, dwarfing all the others (CBS 3.5/8, NBC 3.1/7, ABC 2.5/6, WB 1.4/.3).  Fox’s total audience on Sunday was 35.5 million viewers, a good showing, tho down from last years Tampa vs. Philly  (38.7 million) and 2002’s St. Louis vs. Philly game (37.4 million).  Nonetheless, a good night had by Fox.  Among the male viewers, the game drew a 18.4/41 M18-49 and a 20.7/42 M25-54.

The consensus is unanimous — the NATPE floor had an energy and a buzz this year that has been absent the last couple of years. People are buying; distributors are making deals, station people returned this year and there’s much jocularity and general good natured-ness.  All of which were in desperate supply a year ago.  Last year NATPE seeming had both feet in the grave, and the task facing the newly appointed Rick Feldman as President/CEO seem to be an impossible one.  And yet here we are in Las Vegas, the weather cooperated, the stars of syndication were on the floor, network honchos were in attendance showing their support, the perennial characters in capes, robot people and drag queens, all returned. Yes, Rick Feldman has seemingly done the impossible and ought to be congratulated for a magnificent effort.  Is NATPE like it used to be with the giant booths, aisles so compressed with traffic you couldn’t move, Wolfgang Puck making pizzas and the WWE Wrestlers doing battle on their giant stage?  No.  Not nearly.  But it’s nothing like the dismal scene on the convention floor a year ago.  And for those in suites, that operation was a much smoother one this year – not the elevator jams of two years ago, and also unlike years past people this year were stopping to catch up in the halls with one another, chatting, conducting business, a generally more lively affair. There will also be those stalwarts who predict NATPE will still shrivel up and go away.  And yet there seem to be so many more who would love to see it continue, and came to Vegas this year to show their support.  A good convention that will likely be even better next year. Well done Rick.

In Development:

  • Bravo has ordered a pilot for His & Hers, wherein couples get a bedroom and bedroom relationship makeover from Authentic Entertainment, according to Hollywood Reporter.
  • NBC had ordered a pilot for The Friendlys (NBC Studios) with Mark Cullen and Robb Cullen as exec prods./writers. A comedy that picks up after the death of a candy mogul, where we find his beautiful but not-so-business minded wife, and his daughter, forced to work together to continue the family business.  NBC has also ordered a script for a family comedy known only as the Marsh McCall Father-Son Comedy (Warner Bros. Television) based in part of McCall’s life, about a son trying to get along with his college professor father.

Charter Communications launched the second piece of a three-pronged consumer campaign yesterday featuring the talents of Dan Aykroyd.  Created by McCann Worldgroup, the campaign’s first component launched over the holidays and focused on Charter’s HDTV, Video on Demand and High Speed Internet products, wrapped up in the viewing publics love of television, and the tag line “Get Charter. Get Hooked.”  The second piece with Aykroyd casts him in three :30’s as the leader of Charter’s “Dish Intervention Team”, assisting satellite dish owners on seeing the light in Charter’s Digital TV and/or high speed internet. These spots finish with Aykroyd’s “The Dish is the disease. We’re the cure.”  The first spot launched yesterday, the other two in February.  No news yet when the third component will hit.

The Hatchery, a production company founded this past November by Margaret Loesch, Bruce Stein and Dan Angel, announced that CBS had given them the go-ahead to create a musical three hour TV movie special of Scrooge, according to Daily Variety.  Serving as exec. producers for the holiday special are Loesch, Stein and composer/screenwriter Leslie Bricusse as well as Dan Angel and Billy Brown (Angel and Brown penned TNT’s Door to Door).  According to Loesch, the special is budgeted at $12 million, and is slated for to air during the holiday season in 2004.

Beginning today Canada’s Rogers Cable Inc., will offer its digital subscribers the Anime Network as part of its video-on-demand service.  Anime Network will provide titles from its library of anime series and feature films in four genres: action, science fiction, martial arts and comedy.

Friday, January 16, 2004. Fast Affiliate 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     6.5/11  Joan of Arcadia 7.2/12, JAG 7.5/13, The Handler  4.8/8

NBC     6.1/10  Dateline 6.6/11, Ed 4.7/8, Third Watch 7.0/12

ABC     5.3/9   George Lopez [r] 5.1/9, Married to the Kellys [r] 4.4/8, Hope & Faith [r] 5.3/9, Life with Bonnie [r] 4.8/8, 20/20  6.5/11

Fox     3.5/6   Totally Outrageous Behavior 3.5/6, World’s Craziest Videos 3.5/6, Boston Public  3.5/6

WB      2.0/3   Reba 2.5/4, What I Like About You 1.8/3, Grounded for Life 1.9/3, Like Family  1.9./3

UPN     1.2/2   Movie: Gossip 1.2/2

A18-49  NBC 3.0/9, ABC 2.9/9, CBS 2.6/8, Fox 2.2/7, WB 1.2/4, UPN 0.6/2

Saturday, January 17, 2004. Fast Affiliate 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  Star Search [p] 4.8/9, Hack 5.4/9, The District 6.8/12

FOX     4.8/8   Cops 4.5/8, Cops [r] 5.0/9, America’s Most Wanted 4.8/8

NBC     4.4/8   NBC Movie: As Good as it Gets 4.4/8

ABC     4.0/7   Disney Movie: Liar Liar 4.2/7, Monk [p] 3.6/6

A18-49  Fox 3.1/9, ABC 2.6/8, CBS and NBC 1.9/6

Sunday, January 18, 2004. Fast Affiliate 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

Fox     20.3/30 NFC Championship Game 20.3/30

CBS     8.4/13  60 Minutes, Cold Case, CBS Movie: Double Jeopardy [r]

NBC     6.1/9   Dateline, American Dreams, L&O: CI, L&O: CI [r]

ABC     4.6/7   AFV, 10-8, Alias, The Practice

WB      2.1/3   Smallville: Beginnings [r], Charmed, Surreal Life

A18-49  Fox 14.4/33, CBS 3.5/8, NBC 3.1/7, ABC 2.5/6, WB 1.4/.3



Feb 2  6 at 10P

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The History Channel presents This Day in History:
1892 – The first official basketball game was played by students at the Springfield, MA, YMCA Training School.

Answer to Yesterday’s Trivia Question: This occasional series bad guy was nicknamed River Nile Nut by the good guys.  What was this bad guy’s “real” name?  KING TUT on BATMAN. Kudos to:  Paul Moscarello-Insight Interactive Group/Philadelphia; Ken Colen-Colen Research & Consulting/New Jersey; Marianne O’Leary-CBS/NY; Christina Owen-Millenia 3 Comm/Atlanta; Patrick Carey-WCIU/Chicago; Les Stipp-GSD&M/Chicago; Dale Warshaw-KWBA/Tucson; Robert Ray-HDNet/Dallas; Evan Weinstein-Amazing Race/LA; Jennifer Erskine-Waterman Ent/Montecito; Paul Gilbert-Sony Pictures Television Int’l/Culver City; Cary Miller-Creative Television Mktg/Burbank.

Today’s Trivia Question:  Who was primetime television’s first character to get a face lift? (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
01/20/04   5:17am PT
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Court TV
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COURT TV:       Dominick Dunne, Forensic Files, The Investigators
ABC             According to Jim [r], According to Jim [r], State of the Union Address
CBS             Navy NCIS [r], State of the Union Address, Two and a Half Men
FOX             American Idol, State of the Union Address
NBC             The Tracy Morgan Show, Whoopi [r], State of the Union Address
PAX             AFV, Early Edition, Diagnosis Murder
UPN             One on One [r], All of Us [r], Top Model (preempted in some mkts for Prez SOA address)
WB              Gilmore Girls, One Tree Hill
TELE            Amor Descardo, El Alma Herida, Mujeres Apasionadas
UNIV            Velo de Novia, Te Amare en Silencio, Casos de la Vida Real

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