"Futurama" voice cast settles with Twentieth

We knew how all of this would come out at the end. The voice cast of Futurama has agreed to a pact with the show’s producers and Twentieth Television on their salaries. The cast includes Billy West, Katey Sagal, Tress MacNeille, Maurice LaMarche, and John DiMaggio. The group was to appear at the Futurama Comic-Con panel last week, but was […]

"Marie" dropped – before it begins

After speculation that Marie Osmond’s new talk show would not go forward, Program Partners made it official today. The daily talk-show strip was to premiere on September 14 in 80 percent of the country, including WCIU-TV in Chicago. It has been reported some stations had been pulling their offers to air the show. The weak ad market, the recession, and […]

Rob Stafford to co-anchor WMAQ’s 10 p.m. newscast

In another major move by the NBC-owned outlet, WMAQ-TV announced Thursday that Rob Stafford will co-anchor the station’s 10 p.m. newscast with Allison Rosati beginning on August 10. Stafford will also co-anchor the 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. newscast with Rosati beginning on August 10 as well. The move comes as WMAQ’s ratings at 10 have grown in the past […]

Anna Davlantes out at Channel 5

Yours truly was celebrating when Ben “Party All The Time” Silverman left NBC Monday. Now comes the bad news: it appears Anna Davlantes is following him out the door. Ms. Davlantes exited NBC-owned WMAQ-TV today after failing to come to a contract renewal agreement with the station. WMAQ’s station manager (Fran Whitaker) put out a short statement thanking her for […]

T Dog’s Groovy Grab Bag – The TCA edition

For the next nine or so days, television critics (or those who are left) will be at the Television Critics Association Press Tour in Pasadena, Calif. for Q&A sessions on the new fall shows, countless press releases, and sharp exchanges with network execs (sorry, no more Ben Silverman.) Here are some of the early highlights of the tour: – TBS […]

Nielsen won’t play in Peoria

Will Nielsen ratings play in Peoria? Not anymore. Peoria-Bloomington’s commercial television stations have recently told the ratings service to take a hike. According to this TVNewscheck story, the downstate market’s two owners – Nextstar and Granite – has ditched Nielsen as their main television ratings provider. Instead, the stations are replacing the service with “qualitative research and smart sales promotion” […]

The offical Comic-Con post game show

The comic book and pop culture gathering in San Diego every July called Comic-Con ended on Sunday. Over 100,000 people attended the four-day geekfest, drawing more bodies than a Nationals-Padres three-game series would’ve drawn – or any homestand involving the Padres. Comic-Con has grown to be a important marketing vehicle for Hollywood studios – its now seen as an important […]

Ben Silverman out at NBC

The long national nightmare is over – the Bulls Ballboy is moving on. NBC Entertainment Co-Chairman Ben Silverman resigned today after two years to start a new company with Barry Diller’s IAC. He’s essentially returning to his entrepreneurial roots: he founded production company Reville, producers of The Office and Ugly Betty. His replacement is Jeff Gaspin, who will now add […]

Comic-Con is here!

It’s Comic-Con time again! For four days every July, about 100,000 people descend on San Diego for the annual geek fest and pop culture festival, started in 1970 as just a simple comic book convention. Hollywood has invaded the gathering over the last several years, bringing tens of thousands of people – and a lot of revenue – to San […]

WBBM-TV’s news ratings continue to lag

Spent so much time on WFLD lately (Mike Barz’s firing and the station’s 10 p.m. newscast cancellation), now there’s a story of Chicago’s other ratings-losing news operation – CBS-owned WBBM-TV. But while both news stations are still trying to find an audience, NBC-owned WMAQ-TV’s 10 p.m. newscast has seen a 13% increase in household ratings since January and is now […]

"Ugly Betty" sold to – TV Guide channel?

Yes, it’s true – Disney-ABC Domestic Television Distribution has sold off-network rights to Ugly Betty to the TV Guide Channel – a channel known primarily for scrolling TV listings. The series will be stripped beginning in Fall 2010, but the network will begin airing “re-purposed” episodes of the fourth season of the show two weeks after new episodes appear on […]

WFLD dumps Mike Barz

Fox-owned WFLD-Channel 32 has dumped morning news anchor Mike Barz after just two years amid allegations he acted at a off-site party. The former WGN-TV morning sports anchor joined the station in 2007 from ABC’s Good Morning America, and fronted Good Day Chicago alongside Jan Jeffcoat. He was suspended from WFLD shortly after he joined the station, after allegations he […]

Walter Cronkite dies

One of journalism’s most trustworthy figures has passed away. Walter Cronkite, who was a longtime anchor of The CBS Evening News for nineteen years, died this evening at the age of 92. Cronkite was with CBS News for 31 years, when he was forced out in 1981 due to the network’s mandatory retirement of anyone who reached the age of […]

T Dog’s Groovy Grab Bag

– Tuesday night’s Major League Baseball All-Star Game drew 14.6 million viewers to Fox, according to Nielsen. Locally, the game drew a 12.8 household rating and 21 household share – a big number despite the fact only two players from Chicago’s baseball teams were represented. In St. Louis (where the game was held), the contest drew a whopping 37 rating […]