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CNN’s ‘New Day’ On Battling ‘Fox & Friends’

By | Sunday June 16, 2013 @ 2:20pm PDT

Jeff Zucker has said that he’d consider CNN’s new morning show New Day a success if it beat the news network’s previous AM offerings in the ratings. That’s setting the bar pretty low for New Day which debuts at 6 AM ET on June 17 with recent ABC News transplant Chris Cuomo and Kate Bolduan as hosts, former KTLA morning show anchor Michaela Pereira as the news anchor and former Good Morning America chief Jim Murphy as Senior Executive Producer. Year to date Early Start and Starting Point averaged 308,000 total viewers and 123,000 in the Adults 25-54 demo from 6 AM to 9 AM for CNN. While up from last year, those numbers are still behind their cable rivals’ AM shows and way behind what the Big 3 networks pull in on their morning shows. On cable news, MSNBC’s Morning Joe has had 400,000 viewers and 139,000 among 25-54s YTD and Fox News Channel’s long time top spot Fox And Friends has averaged 1.141 million viewers and 274,000.

Related: Sarah Palin Returns To Fox News On June 17

While CNN’s ratings have been up in recent months after hitting lows last year, the network’s track record of debuts hasn’t been so good since Zucker took over in late January. Almost all of the new shows or experiments that CNN has attempted of late have premiered poorly with the exception of Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown – and that wasn’t a Zucker baby like New Day has been for the former Today boss who has said that CNN will more “broadly” define what news is. Deadline spoke with Bolduan and Cuomo as well as Murphy (who was at Anderson Cooper’s syndicated talk show until this January) recently about the expectations for the show, fighting Fox & Friends, how much Zucker’s was involved with the new show, CNN’s bump and the difference between cable and network news.

DEADLINE: From the time that Jeff Zucker took over at CNN he said that a morning show was a top priority, so how is New Day going to get CNN some traction in the morning?
MURPHY: It’s going get some traction by being a very good morning news program. Without giving away too much, I would say that what you should expect is a very busy, energetic, story filled and information filled, fast moving, interesting morning news program with a broad range of stories and topics and a lot of resources from CNN helping to lift it up and cover a lot of things.

DEADLINE: OK, but, Jim, Chris and Kate, are you guys going to beat Fox and Friends?
BOLDUAN: We’re not going into it with the goal of beating Fox & Friends. We’re going into it with the goal of making a news program that we are proud of and that we want to watch. And that’s our goal. And do we want to improve our ratings? Do we want people to watch our show? Absolutely. We wouldn’t be in the business if we didn’t. Is there a perfect formula that we can apply with a surefire win in the ratings game? No. If I had that recipe I could sell it for a lot of money. So we are going to, first and foremost, put on a strong news program, a show that we ourselves will be proud of and want to watch, and we’re also allowing ourselves flexibility to evolve the show. Day one is not going to look like day one hundred and one. And that’s where our focus will be. And we’re not going to be picking a partisan angle. That’s not what CNN does and this is a news program that will stick very firmly with the CNN brand of news. Read More »

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CNN’s Jeff Zucker Says News And Generational Change Will Mark ‘New Day’

The morning newscast, which launches June 17, is a top priority for the CNN chief. And while it won’t break the mold, Jeff Zucker says in a briefing today that the effort will stand out over time by blending hard news with a relatively young anchor team featuring Chris Cuomo and Kate Bolduan, and news anchor Michaela Pereira. When he ran NBC’s Today Show “we did play with a lot of gimmicks. Cooking segments and outdoor concerts. Those are not going to be part of this kind of program…People are coming to CNN for the news.” Zucker says New Day won’t try to mimic MSNBC’s Morning Joe: “Its success has been with an elite audience but not with a broad audience. We’re not after a niche audience.” He praised the news focus of CBS This Morning but says New Day will have “a slightly different tone that you’ll get from a new generation.” He hopes to get a jump on his rivals by starting New Day at 6 AM. “The one time of day when people don’t necessarily know what’s happening is when they wake up,” he says. Read More »

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Kate Bolduan Named CNN Morning Show Co-Host With Chris Cuomo; KTLA’s Michaela Pereira Set As News Anchor

By | Thursday March 28, 2013 @ 7:06am PDT

CNN finally has its morning team, with congressional correspondent Kate Bolduan joining Chris Cuomo in the early hours. KTLA Los Angeles morning show anchor Michaela Pereira will serve as news anchor for the yet-unnamed New York-based show. “I’ve been looking forward to this announcement since I first joined CNN”, said CNN Worldwide President Jeff Zucker in a statement this morning. “Chris, Kate and Michaela are a dynamic team that will give our viewers in America a new way to start their day. We were floored with excitement when we saw Chris and Kate together on screen, and by adding Michaela to the mix we feel we have something very special. We believe there is an opening to do news in the morning with a fresh, new voice”.  No official launch date was given, though the show is set to premiere sometime in the spring. Read More »

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Did CNN Preview Its New Morning Show Today?

By | Thursday February 28, 2013 @ 10:31am PST

CNN viewers might have caught a glimpse of the near-future this morning when Chris Cuomo and Erin Burnett co-anchored the network’s coverage of the Pope’s final day in office. Cuomo has already been tapped to co-anchor whatever new morning show replaces the Soledad O’Brien-hosted Starting Point as part of new CNN boss Jeff Zucker’s overhaul of the cable news network; Burnett, who currently anchors an evening show, is widely expected to join him. The likely dry run came as the New York Times reported today that Jim Murphy, who was in charge of ABC’s Good Morning America from 2006-2011 (while Cuomo was on the show), will eventually run the new morning show as senior executive producer. Murphy most recently helped launch CNN host Anderson Cooper’s now-cancelled daytime talk show.

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Jeff Zucker Moving Erin Burnett To Host New CNN Morning Show With Chris Cuomo

By | Tuesday January 29, 2013 @ 10:05am PST

The chess pieces are certainly in play at CNN today. Managing editor Mark Whitaker is out, 20/20’s Chris Cuomo has been poached from ABC and now sources are telling Deadline that new CNN boss Jeff Zucker is about to move Erin Burnett from primetime to a new morning show. Insiders say that the morning show slot is where former Today Show executive producer Zucker wants to start making his mark at the network. Burnett would co-host in the AM with Cuomo, who’s role in the as yet-untitled morning show was announced with his hiring by CNN this morning. No word yet as to who will take over Burnett’s 7 PM OutFront show, which has been struggling in the ratings like most of CNN’s primetime. Burnett joined CNN in April 2011 from CNBC. Her primetime show debuted in October 2011.

Related: CNN Cuts James Carville & Mary Matalin

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UPDATE: David Muir Named ‘20/20’ Co-Anchor To Replace Chris Cuomo

By | Tuesday January 29, 2013 @ 9:12am PST

UPDATE, 9:12 AM: That was fast. ABC News president Ben Sherwood announced that David Muir will take over for Chris Cuomo, who is making the jump to CNN. Muir, who anchors World News on the weekend and subs for Diane Sawyer during the week, will join 20/20 co-anchor Elizabeth Vargas on ABC’s Friday night newsmagazine. “For the last two years David has appeared on air more often than any correspondent at any news division, reporting from Tahrir Square to Fukushima to Tucson to Aurora”, Sherwood wrote today in an email to staff that also confirmed Cuomo’s exit.

PREVIOUS, 8:18 AM: As Deadline reported last night, 20/20 anchor Chris Cuomo has made the jump to cable. CNN’s Jeff Zucker formally announced today that Cuomo has joined the news network and will host a yet-untitled morning show. The move comes just more than a month since former ABC White House correspondent Jake Tapper joined CNN. Here’s today’s release:

Related: CNN Managing Editor Mark Whitaker Departs Read More »

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‘20/20’s Chris Cuomo In Talks To Join CNN

By | Monday January 28, 2013 @ 11:34pm PST

One week into Jeff Zucker’s reign at CNN, the news network is closing in on bringing another ABC face onboard. 20/20 co-anchor Chris Cuomo is in deep negotiations with to become one of the hosts of a new morning show for the network, sources tell Deadline. “They’re making a play for Cuomo in a fairly significant way and ABC has to figure out fast if they can match or better CNN’s offer,” says a cable news insider. Cuomo’s contract with ABC is reportedly up for renewal and he’s eager to make the jump to cable if the offer is right, the source says. Cuomo was Good Morning America’s news anchor from 2006-2009 before he moved to his current gig on ABC’s newsmagazine show. Read More »

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