Tuesday, May 31, 2011

NBC's 'The Voice' Scores Post-Super Bowl Slot

LOS ANGELES - NBC's new hit series "The Voice" is getting the choice post-Super Bowl spot next year, the network said Tuesday.

It announced that a special edition of "The Voice" will air Feb. 5 after the NFL championship game.

NBC Entertainment Chairman Bob Greenblatt called the post-game slot the best showcase on TV and said the singing contest deserves the exposure.

The network's early decision regarding an event eight months away represents a vote of confidence in the freshman program.

"The Voice" features judges Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green, Adam Levine and Blake Shelton and the gimmick of initially picking contestants sight unseen.

It's been a bright spot for struggling NBC, scoring as the season's top-rated new series among young adults and a draw among all viewers.

The series has the right "mass appeal" to match up with the Super Bowl, the year's biggest sports event, Greenblatt said. "The Voice" debuted in April and wraps the season at the end of June.

While "The Voice" has secured the Super Bowl slot, there's uncertainty over the NFL schedule because of a labor dispute that led to the team owners' lockout of players.

A federal court hearing on the issue was scheduled this week.

Source: The Associated Press

Friday, May 27, 2011

May Sweeps: Channel 3 News #1 at 4:30 a.m. and 11 p.m.

By Frank Macek

Once again, Channel 3 News is the area's top choice for news, weather and sports at 11 pm, according to the results of May 2011 sweeps that ended Wednesday.

Channel 3 News at 11 pm outpaced all competition in the time slot for the all important Adults 25-54 demo, Monday through Sunday and improved the Monday through Friday lead-in from weak NBC programming by nearly 20%.

Channel 3 News at 4:30 a.m. also led the pack in early morning news finishing #1 in Adults 25-54.

In those same key demographics, WKYC ranked #2 at 5 a.m., #2 at 6 a.m., #2 at 6 p.m. and #2 at 7 p.m.
  • Channel 3 News at 6 p.m. was the only newscast that saw month to month growth during the time period, while the other stations lost viewers in Adults 25-54 
  • Channel 3 News at 7 p.m. was ranked #1 in Women 25-54.
  • Channel 3 News Weekends from 9 to 10:30 a.m. retained its #1 position
  • Dr. Phil finished #1 against stiff news competition at 5 p.m. in Adults 25-54.
Click on the video to watch Channel 3's latest proof of performance commercial that began airing on Thursday:

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Behind the Scenes: AOL Stops To Chat with Their "You've Got Mail" Man

Elwood Edwards, Photo courtesy of Ryan Haidet 
By Frank Macek

You may not know the face, but you certainly know the voice.

If you have ever used America On-Line (AOL) mail, the man whose voice you hear is none other than Channel 3's Elwood Elwards.

Elwood wears many hats here at the WKYC Digital Broadcast Center as ENPS and Graphics Supervisor, Editor, Camera operator, audio man and more!

Before coming to Channel 3, Elwood was quite busy working with AOL to record several phrases you hear on your computers including "You've Got Mail" and "File's Done."

The folks from AOL were here at the WKYC Digital Broadcast Center a few weeks ago to record a little video of Elwood.

Click on the video to watch:

You’re watching You’ve Got Elwood Edwards. See the Web's top videos on AOL Video

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Director's Cut Alert: Jim Donovan To Take Medical Leave Of Absence

Jim Donovan
Channel 3 Sports Anchor Jim Donovan announced today that he is leaving WKYC-TV on a medical leave of absence. Beginning next week, he will begin the process of a bone marrow transplant for treatment of leukemia.

"While it's not our normal policy to discuss personnel matters, this is a unique situation and we want to make sure folks understand how much we love, respect and want to support Jim," said WKYC-TV President and General Manager Brooke Spectorsky. "He has been battling leukemia for over ten years, and in partnership with his medical team has undergone multiple treatments. Jimmy is a very private person, and has managed to keep his incredibly hectic schedule and job without most of our staff and viewers realizing the physical and mental effort involved. But now, it's time for him to try and beat this disease once and for all."

"I've gone through a lot of treatment for close to 11 years and right now a transplant gives me the best chance for a full recovery," added Donovan. "My wife, Cheryl, and daughter, Meghan, have been with me through it all and we figured now it was time to allow people to know what is going on in my life. My goal is to get healthy and to be back covering Cleveland sports as soon as possible."

"Weekend sports anchor Dave Chudowsky will fill-in while Jim is home recuperating," said News Director Rita Andolsen.

Donovan joined WKYC-TV in March of 1985 as a weekend sports anchor and was promoted to Sports Director in 1986. In 1999, Jim was named the radio play-by-play voice of the Cleveland Browns.

Browns President, Mike Holmgren issued the following statement: "On behalf of everyone here at the Cleveland Browns, I'd like to wish Jim a speedy recovery. Jim has been a respected voice in the Cleveland sports scene for many years, and his association with our organization is held in high esteem. His name has become synonymous with the Browns and we consider him a part of our family. Our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family during this process."

"Jim Donovan is a huge part of the success of Channel 3 and we will be thrilled when he is in good health and back on the anchor desk," added Mr. Spectorsky. "Our prayers are with him and his family, and we know the viewers of northeast Ohio will be equally supportive."

You can send get well wishes to: getwelljim@wkyc.com

We'll be sure to pass them on to Jim and his family.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Behind the Scenes: Governor Kasich Visit to WKYC on 5/19/11

Ohio Governor John Kasich was in Cleveland today for an exclusive one on one interview with WKYC/TV 3, as we mentioned in our posting yesterday.

We go behind the scenes as the Governor arrived at the Channel 3 Studios.

Click on the video to watch:

Director's Cut Alert: NBC Sports Chief Dick Ebersol Resigns

Dick Ebersol
Special to the Director's Cut Blog
By Rachel Cohen, AP Sports Writer

NEW YORK (AP) - Dick Ebersol has resigned as NBC Sports Group chairman, an industry giant who helped launch "Saturday Night Live" and built the network into the home of the Olympics over the past two decades.

"I had a long run and loved every bit of it," Ebersol said in a phone interview with The Associated Press on Thursday.

Ebersol said he couldn't agree to terms on a new contract with Comcast, which merged with NBC earlier this year. The network said NBC Sports Cable Group president Mark Lazarus would take over for Ebersol.

Ebersol ran NBC Sports since 1989, and his departure comes just three weeks before the International Olympic Committee opens bids on the next set of lucrative Olympic broadcast rights in the United States.

"It comes as a complete surprise," said Richard Carrion, the IOC executive board member who negotiates U.S. rights. He said Comcast CEO Brian Roberts "assured me they are 100 percent committed to the Olympics and the rights process."

IOC President Jacques Rogge said he was told that Ebersol's resignation had "absolutely nothing to do" with the upcoming bidding on rights for the 2014 and 2016 Olympics. Rogge said the news came as a "shock."

Ebersol said he has no reason to believe network officials "do not want to continue the association."

The resignation was first reported by The New York Times.

In addition to his many network triumphs, Ebersol endured personal tragedy, surviving a plane crash that killed his teenage son in 2004.

The Ebersols were on their way from the airport near the ski community of Telluride, Colo., to South Bend, Ind., where older son Charlie attended Notre Dame. The plane skidded across the runway, ripped apart and burst into flames, killing his 14-year-old son Teddy, the pilot and a flight attendant. Ebersol and Charlie were seriously injured. His wife, actress Susan Saint James, was not on the plane.

The 63-year-old Ebersol's dedication to the Olympics dates to 1967, when he temporarily dropped out of Yale to work at ABC as an Olympic researcher.

With the NBC/Comcast merger, Ebersol seemingly gained newfound power and resources with the addition of the cable company's sports channels and money. The top spots in the new NBC Sports Group were filled with his colleagues from NBC.

The IOC is holding its auction next month for the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, and 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. Networks can also bid on a four-games package including the 2018 and 2020 Olympics, whose host cities have not yet been chosen. The IOC is hoping to surpass the previous $2.2 billion deal.

NBC has broadcast every Summer Olympics since 1988 and every Winter Games since 2002.

"After Jacques Rogge, in many ways, he's been the most influential person on the Olympic movement in terms of both revenue growth and the presentation of their product to the globe," said former USOC chairman Peter Ueberroth. "His skills have been copied by other major countries and he's created the style of modern Olympic Games since 1990."

In 1975, as NBC's director of weekend late night programming, Ebersol and Lorne Michaels conceived and developed "Saturday Night Live." Ebersol became NBC's vice president of late night programming as a 28-year-old, the network's first VP under the age of 30. After a brief departure, he returned to "SNL" in 1981 as executive producer and remained until 1985.

He focused on his production company before returning to NBC in 1989.

In December 2003, Ebersol agreed to a nine-year contract through 2012.

Other than the Olympics, NBC's presence in other sports had dwindled in recent years. It hasn't televised baseball since 2000 or the NBA since 2002.

After losing its rights to the NFL's AFC package in 1998, NBC picked up the league's Sunday night deal starting in 2006 and rejoined the Super Bowl rotation. Under Ebersol, the network transformed "Sunday Night Football" into destination viewing.


AP Sports Writer Stephen Wilson in Lausanne, Switzerland, and AP National Writer Eddie Pells in Denver contributed to this report.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

WKYC Anchor Chris Tye Sits Down With Ohio Governor John Kasich Thursday

He’s slashing school and safety force budgets to balance the budget. Now, Governor Kasich takes your tough questions on the tough issues.

WKYC 7 PM Anchor Chris Tye will sit down with Governor John Kasich on Thursday. The Governor will be joining us live in studio for an exclusive one-on-one interview.

We'll stream the entire interview live on the website, wkyc.com, starting at 1:30 p.m.

You can also post your own questions during the interview, or in advance on our facebook page at www.facebook.com/WKYC.Channel3

We'll have extended coverage of the interview Thursday night on Channel 3 News at 6, 7 and 11.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

NBC Chief Ushers In Change With Fall Lineup

Special to the Director's Cut
By Gary Levin, USA Today

A new team at cellar-dwelling NBC is bent on reversing the network's fortunes with a new crop of shows with potentially broader appeal.

The fall game plan includes The Playboy Club, a '60s-era soap about the famed Chicago hideaway and its ties to mobsters and celebrities; Prime Suspect, a remake of the British detective series starring Maria Bello (ER) in the role first played by Helen Mirren; and Grimm, a cop drama set in a world inhabited by fairy-tale characters.

Programming chief Robert Greenblatt, the Showtime executive brought in by NBC's new owner, Comcast, says he sought "bold and original and attention-getting" shows to combat viewers' defection to cable.

A big focus is comedy, where NBC has struggled by airing critically acclaimed shows with too few viewers.

"We need to grow more comedies on our schedule and not just on Thursday, and we need to make the comedies broader," Greenblatt says.

So two new sitcoms will lead off Wednesdays:

• Up All Night, starring Christina Applegate (Samantha Who?) as a frazzled working mom (Will Arnett plays her stay-at-home husband).

• Free Agents, about smitten co-workers on the rebound, starring Hank Azaria. Thursday's Whitney, a relationship comedy starring Whitney Cummings, gets the plum post-Office slot.

Spring reality hit The Voice, ending its first season next month, will be rested until January, when it's expected to provide a compatible Monday lead-in for Smash, a new drama about the makings of a Broadway show. (Another competition, The Sing-Off, will fill the slot this fall.)

And 30 Rock will sit out because of star Tina Fey's pregnancy and return early next year. Low-rated Chuck will finish its run with 13 episodes on Fridays, thanks to a reduced price tag and what Greenblatt calls a "hugely loyal fan base" that deserves a wrap-up to the series.

Also in the pipeline for midseason:

• The Firm, based on John Grisham's novel.

• Awake, about a detective living parallel lives.

• The Celebrity Apprentice, with or without Donald Trump, who's weighing a presidential run.

• Three more comedies, including one based on the life of comedian Chelsea Handler.

Cancellations include the retooled Law & Order: Los Angeles,The Event and Outsourced. And while David E. Kelley's midseason legal drama Harry's Law made the cut, his pilot for a remake of Wonder Woman came up short.

NBC's fall schedule

New shows in bold, new time periods
in italics. All times ET/PT.

8:00 The Sing-Off
10:00 The Playboy Club

8:00 The Biggest Loser
10:00 Parenthood

8:00 Up All Night
8:30 Free Agents
9:00 Harry’s Law
10:00 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit

8:00 Community
8:30 Parks and Recreation
9:00 The Office
9:30 Whitney
10:00 Prime Suspect

8:00 Chuck
9:00 Grimm
10:00 Dateline NBC


7:00 Football Night in America
8:15 Sunday Night Football

Monday, May 09, 2011

Meredith Vieira leaving 'Today' Show; Ann Curry replaces

Getty Images: Scott Gries
NEW YORK -- Meredith Vieira said Monday that she will leave NBC's "Today" show next month to spend more time with her family, and Ann Curry will replace her as host.

The turnover at television's top-rated morning show was anticipated. Vieira replaced Katie Couric five years ago, and has talked about wanting more free time. Vieira, 57, has three children and her husband, author Richard M. Cohen, wrote a best-selling book about coping with multiple sclerosis and colon cancer.

"Even as I say this and I know that it's the right thing, I'm really sad," she said, fighting back emotion as she made the announcement on the air Monday.

Her co-host, Matt Lauer, said that Vieira "has brought class and dignity and talent and a joy of life to this show for the last five years."

Transitions are unusual for "Today," as Vieira was still the newbie among the show's core four that included Lauer, Curry and Al Roker.

Curry has been with the show since 1997 as the news anchor. Passed over for the top job five years ago when Vieira was chosen, she stuck with the show and carved out a new reputation as a globe-trotting reporter. She was in Pakistan last week following the killing of Osama bin Laden.

"I feel like the high school computer nerd who has just been asked to the prom by the quarterback of the football team," Curry said.

Natalie Morales, an anchor for the third of the show's four hours, will become the regular newsreader. "Today" also announced that Savannah Guthrie will become a host of the show's third hour with Morales and Roker.

"Today" is careful to cultivate the image of family, and made the announcement with the five regulars seated on a couch, tossing off jokes to blunt emotion.

Vieira says she'll leave the show in June.
Source: The Assoicated Press

Thursday, May 05, 2011

WKYC's Robinson Grand Marshall for "Walk, Rock and Run" This Saturday, May 7th

Diversity in Northeast Ohio is so important to WKYC and 6 & 11 PM anchor Romona Robinson. That's why once again this weekend, Romona will serve as the Grand Marshall for the annual "Walk, Rock and Run."

The event starts and ends at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in downtown Cleveland. All the proceeds benefit the Diversity Center of Northeast Ohio's youth programs.

The race kicks off at 8:30am, Saturday morning. You can register the day of the race, or in advance online at http://www.diversitycenterneo.org/

Come join us!