Fox News chairman Roger Ailes does not recall a specific or negative incident with former FNC contributor Bill Kristol, “doesn’t have an issue with him,” and the reason Kristol ended his decade-long run as FNC contributor this past summer was owing to the network having “made a lot of changes,” Fox News said this morning. This, in response to a report in Politico that Kristol, the editor and publisher of The Weekly Standard, left his Fox News contributor gig two years after he and Ailes got into a disagreement that had a cooling effect on their relationship.
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The report cited anonymous sources, who told columnist Dylan Byers that Ailes had asked Kristol in 2011 to take a negative stance toward “a certain individual” because Ailes wanted to “give that person a bad reputation.” That resulted in “coolness” between the two men, though their relationship remained cordial.
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“Roger doesn’t recall a specific or negative incident — he likes Bill and doesn’t have an issue with him,” Fox News said in a statement this morning. “We made a lot of changes at the network and had been talking to George Will for some time. At this point, Bill’s contract ran out, and we declined to renew it.” Politico reported that Kristol — who announced his departure from the network in August — was less central to Fox News programming during the 2012 election than during previous election cycles, that both parties agreed not to renew his contract and that Kristol said he had been “treated nicely” at Fox News but declined to comment on “the incident.”
George Will Leaves ABC News For Fox News After Three Decades
Fox Tops October Cable News Ratings With Revamped Primetime
Things are changing at Fox News Channel on October 7. That’s when the cable news network will celebrate the 17th anniversary of its launch — and also will have an almost all-new primetime lineup. Megyn Kelly is taking over Sean Hannity’s 9 PM slot with The Kelly File as Hannity moves to 10 PM. On the Record With Greta Van Susteren moves from 10 PM to 7 PM, taking over the Fox Report slot soon to be vacated by Shepard Smith, while ratings juggernaut The O’Reilly Factor stays at 8 PM. This is the first significant shift in FNC’s prime lineup in more than a decade — since Van Susteren debuted at 10 PM in 2002. “As the network continues to dominate with the top 13 programs in cable news, Fox News already redefined primetime viewing to extend well beyond the antiquated 8-11 PM format”, said FNC boss Roger Ailes in a statement today. “We’ve developed a deep bench of engaging and thought-provoking personalities that have grown with Fox News as it has evolved into the most influential and successful cable network in television. These changes will enable the network to continue setting the industry standard for years to come.” This is the latest of a series of changes at the cable news network that has seen Smith get a new show and new role, former The View co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck join morning show Fox & Friends and F&F’s Gretchen Carlson get her own daytime show.
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Just over two months after announcing that Megyn Kelly would be moving to primetime later this year, Fox News Channel today made the first move of its anchor pieces. The cable news network said Thursday that as part … Read More »
Turns out former Fox News exec Brian Lewis isn’t going quietly. Just over a month after being “terminated for cause”, the longtime close aide to Roger Ailes and FNC EVP Communications has lawyered up. And his attorney has come out swinging: “I have just been retained and am still plotting our course of action,” said Judd Burstein in a statement today. “But two things are very clear to me. First, Brian Lewis no longer has any confidentiality obligation to News Corp or Roger Ailes because of the false and malicious statements made by Fox to date. Second, Roger Ailes and News Corp have a lot more to fear from Brian Lewis telling the truth about them than Brian Lewis has to fear from Roger Ailes and his toadies telling lies about Brian Lewis.” Gawker first reported the hiring of the NY-based Burstein, who has represented the likes of Donald Trump and adman/TV host Donny Deutsch.
Related: Fox News’ Brian Lewis On His Departure
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UPDATE, 1:40 PM: “There has been rampant speculation surrounding my departure from Fox that I am not addressing at this time…I will say it has been an honor and privilege to work for Roger Ailes the past 20 years and I wish nothing but the best for him and the great people at Fox News,” FNC’s ousted EVP Corp Communications Brian Lewis told TVNewser this afternoon. Other than that, he had nothing to say, except to single out one press report about his exit as “particularly ludicrous” without elaborating, the site reported. Lewis’s exit has been linked to Gabriel Sherman’s upcoming book on Ailes and Fox News by various sources, including Politico and Matt Drudge. Sherman’s take on Lewis’s ouster, for New York Magazine, suggests Ailes had begun leaning more heavily on people other than Lewis for strategic advice. Sherman said that, in April of ’12, Lewis told him he’d been “overruled” a few days after the Fox News mole story broke in Gawker, as to how the network should react; Lewis told him FNC planned to sue Gawker and might try to have the mole arrested, Sherman wrote. Sherman also reported Lewis called Bill O’Reilly a “chucklehead,” in reference to a photo Gawker unearthed during its Gawker/mole period.
PREVIOUS: “Financial Irregularities” — that’s the intriguing reason given by Fox News Channel, which said today it terminated its EVP Corporate Communications and longtime Roger Ailes confidante Brian Lewis last month. “After an extensive internal investigation of Brian Lewis’ conduct by Fox News, it was determined that he should be terminated for cause”, the network said in a statement, citing also “multiple, material and significant breaches of his employment contract”. Fox News said Lewis was “terminated for cause” on July 25, but word of his departure leaked out today. Read More »
After years of a steady schedule, Fox News Channel is shuffling its primetime deck. The cable news network announced today that Megyn Kelly will be joining FNC’s primetime lineup in some as yet unspecified capacity. The daytime America Live host is currently set to go on maternity leave later this month. FNC also said today that it has signed new long-term contracts with its evening stars Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity and Greta Van Sustern, as well as news anchors Shepard Smith and Bret Baier. Both Kelly and Van Sustern were reupped by FNC back in early May. Read the release from FNC today here:
Megyn Kelly will move to FOX News Channel’s (FNC) primetime lineup upon her return from maternity leave, announced Roger Ailes, Chairman and CEO, FOX News. Additionally, the network has signed long-term deals with Bret Baier, Shepard Smith, Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity and Greta Van Susteren. A new schedule will be announced at a later date.
In making the announcement, Ailes said, “Megyn is an exceptional talent who has successfully filled and surpassed each role we have given her at the network. Her ability to command the screen, delve into the facts and lead a debate is what makes her one of the most sought-after anchors in the business.”
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Media are calling it an all-out book war. Vanity Fair’s website today published an excerpt from the March 19th biography Roger Ailes: Off Camera by Zev Chafets about the Fox News Channel lightning rod for media and political controversy. But the excerpt was devoid of much punch except for a number … Read More »
Fox News Channel announced today it has brought former Congressman Dennis Kucinich on board as contributor to the top-rated cable news network. He will debut Thursday night on The O’Reilly Factor. “I’ve always been impressed with Rep. Kucinich’s fearlessness and thoughtfulness about important issues,” said Fox News chairman and CEO Roger Ailes in a statement Wednesday. The strongly liberal Kucinich had represented Ohio’s 10th District since 1997, but he lost his seat in redistricting in during the fall elections. He ran unsuccessfully for president in 2004 and 2008. Here’s FNC announcement:
FOX News Channel (FNC) has signed former two-time presidential candidate and former U.S. Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) as a contributor in a multi-year deal, announced Bill Shine, Executive Vice President of Programming for the network. Kucinich will provide analysis and commentary across FNC’s daytime and primetime programming, as well as on Fox Business Network (FBN). He will make his debut in the new role on The O’Reilly Factor (8:00 PM/ET) this Thursday, January 17th.
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Fox News has confirmed New York Magazine‘s claim that Roger Ailes is cutting back air time for Fox News contributors Karl Rove and Dick Morris for the time being. (“The election’s over.”) Ailes told media watchers he … Read More »
UPDATE, 11:45 AM: News Corp has made this official with a press release. See below.
PREVIOUS, 10:55 AM: In addition to leading cable’s politically conservative news channel, the new deal will keep Roger Ailes at Fox Business, the Fox station group, and first-run syndication unit Twentieth Television, Daily Beast’s Howard Kurtz reports on Twitter. Although Ailes’ previous deal lasted until next summer, he was widely believed to be negotiating a high-priced renewal. Indeed, one report said he was angling for at least $30M a year, far more than his $21.1M package for the fiscal year that ended in June and even ahead of COO Chase Carey’s $24.8M. Ailes has a strong hand to play now: Profits from Fox News will be especially critical for News Corp next year after it spins off its publishing operations including Dow Jones. People close to the 72-year-old former GOP political consultant had hinted that he might turn the page and either retire or try something different — he said last year that he’d like to run the Cleveland Indians. New York magazine writer Gabriel Sherman, who’s writing a book about Ailes and Fox News, wrote last month that the news network “is his kingdom, and he rules over the operation unchallenged. He has yet to publicly designate a successor. And his competitive streak provides plenty of drive for him to keep the ratings numbers juiced.” Read More »
Apparently so according to New York magazine’s Gabriel Sherman, who’s writing a book about Fox News and its founder. Although Ailes’ current deal runs to next summer, his lawyer, Peter Johnson — who’s also a Fox News contributor — has … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE UPDATE: I scooped yesterday that HBO had done a secret deal for an Untitled Roger Ailes Project being executive produced by Fox News rivals from MSNBC. Today I’ve received … Read More »
Fox News chairman/CEO Roger Ailes referred to CNN’s Soledad O’Brien in a speech earlier this week to North Carolina journalism students as “that girl that’s named after a … Read More »
Fox News made it 10 years in a row as the top-rated cable news network, a streak that began after Rupert Murdoch and Roger Ailes’ operation first overtook CNN in total viewership in January 2002. Said Ailes: “We … Read More »
Is Roger Ailes thinking about stepping down from his gig as chief of Fox News? That’s a possibility, New York Magazine says in a report about his plans to write an autobiography as he enters “a legacy-burnishing phase … Read More »
In an interview with Forbes promoting his new book about JFK, Chris Matthews, host of MSNBC’s Hardball, admits that he is a friend of Fox News chairman Roger Ailes who in 1994 hired him to host his first program, Politics with Chris … Read More »
Fox News Channel’s ensemble opinion show, The Five, launched as a summertime replacement for Glenn Beck after his June 30 departure, has been given the 5 PM time slot on a permanent basis. The roundtable of five co-hosts will … Read More »
Don’t hold your breath, but Roger Ailes said in a new interview with Newsweek that over the past year his Fox News Channel — considered the conservative option to rival cable news networks CNN and MSNBC — has embarked … Read More »