Posts Tagged ‘cbs’

Nina Tassler Upped to Chairman, CBS Entertainment

February 20, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Veteran CBS hit-maker Nina Tassler has been promoted to chairman of CBS Entertainment, inking a new deal with the network that extends through 2017. In her new role, Tassler will lead CBS’ programming across prime time, late night and daytime, while spearheading programming development in all genres. Tassler’s promotion comes as CBS commits to a slate of summer originals like the returning thriller

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CBS Lands Tony Gonzalez as NFL Today Analyst

February 18, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

CBS Sports is making some big moves at its signature pro football studio show, signing 10-time All-Pro tight end Tony Gonzalez as an NFL Today analyst. Beginning this fall, Gonzalez joins NFL Today veterans James Brown, Bill Cowher and Boomer Esiason in CBS’ New York studios. With Gonzalez in the lineup, CBS has elected not to renew the contracts of long-time NFL Today contributors Dan Marino and Shannon Sharpe. In a statement issued Tuesday afternoon, CBS Sports chairman Sean McManus acknowledged that Marino and Sharpe would not return for the 2014-15 NFL campaign. “As they pursue other professional opportunities, we thank Dan and Shannon for their hard work and dedication,” McManus said. “We wish them nothing but the best.” Marino put in 12 years behind the NFL Today desk, while Sharpe has been a fixture on the pre-game show since 2004.

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Moonves: Big Bang Theory Will Move to Accommodate NFL Games

February 13, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

In a bid to accommodate the hulking bruiser that is the National Football League, Leonard, Sheldon, Penny and the rest of The Big Bang Theory crew next fall will be moving out of the Nerdvana of Thursday night for a slot earlier in the week. Speaking to investors during CBS Corp.’s fourth quarter earnings call, CEO Les Moonves confirmed that broadcast’s No. 1 scripted show would temporarily step aside to make way for the network’s new eight-game NFL package . “What we will do with our Thursday night is, we have some big shows, such as The Big Bang Theory … and we’re not going to wait until November to launch that,” Moonves said. “That’s going to be on the air on some other night, which will grow the ratings and the rates on some other night.” (That answers one question .) Moonves added that the sophomore drama Elementary is also likely to shift to another night, and while he did not offer a specific target destination, the smart money’s on Monday. Such a move would be a homecoming of sorts for Big Bang, which in its first three seasons occupied various time slots during the night before moving to the Thursday anchor position in fall 2010. CBS could also use a boost from Elementary, which if nothing else might stanch the bleeding in the network’s Monday 10 p.m. slot. In a rare stumble, two new CBS dramas have faltered in that position; the serialized thriller Hostages averaged just 5.16 million live-plus-same-day viewers and a 1.2 rating among adults 18-49, while successor Intelligence is faring only slightly better against NBC’s The Blacklist. While no decisions have been made on its Thursday freshman comedies The Millers and The Crazy Ones, CBS is all but certain to cancel the long-in-the-tooth Two and a Half Men. Now in its eleventh season, the Chuck Lorre sitcom has plummeted 44 percent in the demo and features one of TV’s priciest casts. (Leads Ashton Kutcher commands on the order of $700,000 per episode for his work on Men, while Jon Cryer rakes in $600,000 for any given show.) After acknowledging that the competition for the new Thursday night NFL show case was “pretty fierce,” Moonves suggested that CBS was really the only proper fit for the league’s purposes. “At the end of the day, it really wasn’t about money,” he said. “The NFL was more interested in establishing their Thursday night and being in partnership with a brand, a company, a network that would do a better job of establishing that into the future.” Moonves went on to note that much as it does already on Sunday afternoons, football will serve as a powerful promotional vehicle for CBS’ fall schedule. He then added that the network hopes to extend the deal beyond the single year for which CBS is contracted. (The NFL has the right to add a second season of Thursday Night Football at its discretion.) “I am extremely pleased to have this.

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CBS Beats Street Estimates With Q4 Earnings, Touts Focus As ‘Pure Content’ Company

February 12, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

CBS has delivered what it billed in Wednesday’s earnings announcement as the company’s highest-ever fourth quarter and full-year results. The Eye topped Wall Street estimates for earnings per share (78 cents, up 22%) and revenue ($3.9 billion, up 6%) on the strength of content licensing and distribution revenues, even as advertising coin remained relatively flat... Read more

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Most News Organizations Are Using Security Contractors to Help Keep Their Teams Safe in Sochi

February 10, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

With the Winter Olympics underway, the governments of several countries (including the U.S.) have battened down the hatches in case of violence, attracting both sports and political coverage to Sochi. U.S. counterterrorism officials have cited “specific threats of varying degrees of credibility that we’re tracking,” and news organizations must report on breaking news while protecting workers from the ever-present threat of violence. NBC and CBS didn’t comment, citing safety concerns; ABC did not return a request for comment. But all news organizations mentioned are believed to use outside security contractors on such assignments. The Sochi Olympics are a rare junction of geopolitics and feel-good sports coverage—NBC will be trying to get its money’s worth out of the $4.38 billion contract to air the games until 2020, but every news division will be on high alert for the promised terrorist attacks. There are also virtual impediments to coverage—Homeland Security is warning watchers that opportunistic hackers are likely to set up fake versions of news sites to acquire personal information, and Russian intelligence is monitoring social media, email and telephone traffic so closely that it’s been described as “the NSA on steroids.” “The news organizations have had enough practice making themselves secure, particularly around the 2005-2006 period,” said TV news analyst Andrew Tyndall.

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4 Burning Questions About CBS’ New NFL Package

February 6, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

In securing the rights to the National Football League’s new Thursday night franchise , CBS effectively pulled the rug out from under its broadcast competition. While it’s no secret that NBC has been having a rough time of it on the crucial night, Fox isn’t faring all that well on fall Thursdays, either. (While its 8 p.m. time slot remains a quandary, ABC’s battery of the indefatigable Grey’s Anatomy and the smash hit Scandal make it bulletproof, especially among female viewers.) Those who were absolutely convinced that NBC would spend its way to a rights win remain perplexed by how the Peacock let itself get outflanked by CBS. But according to sources with insight into the auction, CBS’ offer, which was estimated to be around $275 million, actually did not overshadow its rivals—in fact, one suitor suggests that NBC’s bid was the highest of the five. Instead, the network’s dominance on Thursday nights and its willingness to shoulder the load on the production costs for all 16 games (this includes the eight telecasts that will run on NFL Network in the second half of the season) gave CBS the edge. And while the impact of erecting another broadcast NFL tent pole will be significant, CBS faces some uncertainty as it plans its fall schedule. Here are five of the biggest questions facing the network as of today: 1) What’s going to happen to The Big Bang Theory? It’s a ratings monster and generates tremendous amounts of ad sales revenue , but the endearingly nerdy sitcom’s 8 p.m. start time is likely to overlap CBS’ pre-game show. (NFL Network’s Thursday Night Football games kick off at 8:29 p.m. ET.) So, while CBS could just as soon bench The Big Bang Theory until Nov. 6, it’s more likely to shift the show to Monday night in the slot currently occupied by the departing How I Met Your Mother

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John Cusack Wall Street Drama Among CBS Pilot Orders

February 6, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

A “Wolf of Wall Street” for the small screen and a soapy medical drama about quadruplet siblings who are former reality TV stars make up CBS’s latest pilot orders. The first, an untitled drama that comes from executive producers Taylor Elmore, Ben Cavell, John Cusack, Kevin McCabe, Sarah Timberman and Carl Beverly for CBS Television Studios,... Read more

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Insiders Say NBC Has the Best Chance at Getting the NFL’s Thursday Night Package

January 27, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

The National Football League is poring over a handful of formal offers for a new Thursday night TV package, and sources with skin in the game believe the top bidder will be revealed within the next seven to 10 days. While the bids are effectively sealed, insiders say NBC has the best shot at landing the single-season showcase. Submissions from current rights holders CBS, Fox, NBC and ESPN are in hand, as is an offer from former NFL partner Turner Sports. (TNT carried a slate of eight September-October NFL games from 1990-97.) Handicappers last week said that NBC likely has the upper hand in the silent auction, given its oft-demonstrated willingness to outbid rivals for high-profile sports rights and a pressing need to repair the sucking chest wound that is its Thursday night programming lineup. “ [NBC] spent $2 billion on the NHL and another four and change on the Olympics ,” said one rival sports executive. “They outbid ESPN and Fox by $1 billion to hang onto the Olympics for another 10 years, so why wouldn’t they dig deep [for a second NFL package]?” NBC Sports is staying mum on its Thursday night prospects, but network chief Bob Greenblatt has endorsed the proposal. “We’d love to have more NFL games,” the NBC entertainment chairman said during last week’s Television Critics Association gathering. “Thursday night games might be really interesting to us.” A second night of NFL games also would go a long way toward alleviating the pressure on the Peacock’s Thursday comedy lineup, which is currently averaging a miserly 1.1 in the adults 18-49 demo. While NFL Network’s Thursday Night Football is the league’s lowest-rated package, the 2.8 it delivered this season would be nothing short of a godsend for NBC. Sources said the NFL was hoping to scare up between $750 million and $800 million for the slate, although plans to simulcast a number of the games on NFL Net are likely to drive the price down. (The addition of five TNF telecasts allowed the network to boost its affiliate fee to $1.34 per sub per month, making it the second priciest channel on the dial. Removing games would violate the terms of NFL Net’s carriage agreements.) Naturally, the NFL isn’t looking to beef up revenues at the expense of its own network. “For the foreseeable future, we’ll have 13 games,” NFL Media COO Brian Rolapp told Adweek before the start of the 2012 season. “There are no plans to put those on and take those off.” Unless Fox comes away with the new slate, expect the NFL to keep the winning bid under wraps until after the Super Bowl (Feb. 2).

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Sleepy Hollow Goes Out on a High Note, The Blacklist Continues to Slip

January 21, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Fox’s freshman hit Sleepy Hollow wrapped its first season in grand fashion, drawing its biggest ratings in months with a two-part cliffhanger finale. According to Nielsen fast national data, the supersized Sleepy Hollow averaged 6.93 million viewers and a 2.3 in the adults 18-49 demo, marking its strongest showing since mid-November. The first hour of the finale scared up 6.84 million viewers and a 2.2 rating, while the second segment averaged 7.03 million viewers and a 2.4 in the dollar demo. Sleepy ’s deliveries peaked in the 9:30-10 p.m. slot, averaging 7.24 million viewers and a 2.4 rating. All told, Sleepy’s first season averaged 7.5 million viewers and a 2.6 rating. At present, the supernatural drama stands as the No. 3 new broadcast series, trailing only NBC’s The Blacklist (3.0) and ABC’s Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2.7). Speaking of The Blacklist, the James Spader procedural took another tumble Monday night, its second without having The Voice as its lead-in. The 10 p.m. drama fell to a series-low 2.3 in the demo, as back-to-back episodes of Hollywood Game Night could muster only a 1.3 and a 1.5 in the first two hours of prime. By way of comparison, the 13 Monday night episodes of The Voice averaged a 4.0 in the demo, per Nielsen live-plus-same-day estimates. Across the dial on CBS, the third installment of Intelligence showed no improvement over last week’s disappointing time slot premiere . The Josh Holloway sci-fi/action series averaged just 5.59 million viewers and a 1.1 in the 18-49 demo, down one-tenth of a ratings point from its previous delivery. Given the moribund numbers put up by Intelligence and its predecessor, the limited series Hostages —during its 15-episode lifespan, the show averaged 5.16 million viewers and a 1.2 rating—CBS has a real conundrum on its hands. While the network hasn’t indicated that it was ready to cut and run on its newest drama, the option of sliding Hawaii Five-0 back into its former time slot is starting to look increasingly attractive

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Voiceless Blacklist Drops, Intelligence Plummets

January 14, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

The return of NBC’s The Blacklist on Monday was undermined somewhat by a softer lead-in, but the season’s No. 1 new series still managed to dominate the 10 p.m. time slot. According to Nielsen fast national data, the James Spader procedural delivered 9.11 million viewers and a series-low 2.5 in the adults 18-49 demo, marking a 22 percent drop from its most recent original broadcast (3.2). The Blacklist had been on a six-week hiatus before it returned last night with its 11th episode. Until Monday’s return engagement, The Blacklist had only dipped below a 3.0 in the demo once before, notching a 2.9 rating on Nov. 4. Although NBC heavily promoted the thriller’s return, the ratings decline was not wholly unexpected, given that The Voice is no longer buttressing The Blacklist’s numbers from 8-10 p.m. Broadcast’s No. 3 show returns for its sixth cycle on Tuesday, Feb. 24, the day after NBC wraps its coverage of the Sochi Winter Olympics. If The Blacklist’s deliveries were watered down by a weak lead-in—a special installment of America Ninja Warriors drew a 1.9 in the demo, whereas The Voice’s Monday Night show averaged a 4.0—CBS seems to have lost its footing entirely in the hour. After bowing to 16.5 million viewers and a 2.4 rating in a special Tuesday night post-NCIS premiere, the new sci-fi drama Intelligence took it on the chin in its regular time slot. Per Nielsen, the Josh Holloway vehicle averaged just 6.11 million viewers and a 1.1 18-49 rating, down 54 percent from its opener

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