CNN has confirmed The Hollywood Reporter’s earlier scoop about silver-haired CNN anchor Anderson Cooper’s foray into daytime.
Cooper has inked a deal with the syndication arm of CNN sister unit Warner Bros. for “a light-hearted daytime talk show” that will debut in the fall of 2011. Cooper also has renewed his contract to stay on as anchor of “Anderson Cooper 360.”
In a statement, Cooper, who has been rumoured to be looking for an exit from CNN, said: “I remain as committed as ever to my program on CNN, & will be with CNN for years to come.”
CNN’s new U.S. chief, Ken Jautz, feels the same way about Cooper.
As does CNN Worldwide president Jim Walton, who said in a statement CNN just sent out:
“I am pleased that Anderson Cooper has extended his relationship with CNN and will be with us for years to come. I am also pleased to congratulate Anderson on his new relationship with Telepictures. We think it will be good for Anderson, good for CNN and good for Time Warner.”
But as we reported on Tuesday, the ratings for Cooper’s 10-11 p.m. hour just saw their worst quarter ever, having plummeted to 582,000 viewers from 1.2 million viewers two years earlier. The network needs to do something to turn that around.
Could a buzzy new daytime show give Cooper a much needed jolt in primetime? And if so, can CNN afford to wait until next fall for that to happen?
Here’s the release from Warner Bros. about Cooper’s new show:
ANDERSON COOPER TO HOST ONE HOUR DAYTIME PROGRAM
Telepictures Productions Signs Deal with Emmy® -Award Winning Television Personality to Produce One-Hour Daily Strip for Daytime Television to be Distributed by Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution
BURBANK, Calif. (September 30, 2010) — Anderson Cooper has signed a deal to host a new, one-hour daily daytime strip, set for national syndication launch in Fall 2011, it was announced today by Ken Werner, President, Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution, and Hilary Estey McLoughlin, President, Telepictures Productions.
“Over the course of the past few years, I’ve had the opportunity to work on a number of daytime programs,” said Anderson Cooper. ” It’s fun and interesting to work in daytime television. The format is unique and you can really go in-depth on a wide range of fascinating and compelling stories. With this new program I hope to relay important information and relate to people and the audience in a completely different way. It’s an exciting opportunity to show another side of myself and create something worthwhile and special in daytime.”
“There is a great opportunity in the marketplace for this type of show,” said Ken Werner, President, Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution. “Fall ’11 begins a transition period when long established franchises are leaving the air and making way for a new generation of shows. Anderson Cooper is one of the most distinctive voices of the next generation of television. His popularity and skills uniquely position him to be the next big syndication franchise.”
“The hallmark of Telepictures’ success has been attracting iconic talent and building franchises based on their personalities. From my early days working with Rosie through our success with Ellen, we have been able to identify great talent at the right time that fills a void in daytime. Anderson fills that void today, and I’m thrilled that we’ll be welcoming him to the Telepictures family. Anderson is one of those rare talents that has a relatable and authentic persona, a keen sense of humour and intelligence and has already demonstrated his ability to resonate with daytime viewers,” said Hilary Estey McLoughlin, President, Telepictures Productions.
Cooper will bring his passionate voice and personal perspective to a topical daily talk show that will tell the stories that are capturing the daytime audience’s attention. The show will have a broad palette that will cover social issues, trends and events, pop culture and celebrity, human interest stories and populist news. Cooper will tap into his compassion and fascination with the human condition and share compelling and provocative personal stories and tackle the issues that will stir debate while bringing his humorous take on what is top of mind for the daytime audience.
Cooper will address water cooler topics and interview the real people, populist newsmakers and celebrities behind these stories. From undercover investigations to hidden camera experiments, the show will give the audience new perspective in an effort to gain insight into relevant issues and social trends affecting women’s lives. In addition, Cooper will hold town hall meetings on hot button issues from race to infidelity to Internet predators. When there is breaking news, he will take the audience along with him right into the eye of the storm, as he goes beyond the headlines and into the lives of those affected. The show will feature audience participation both in the studio and live chats with home viewers. Like his predecessors Oprah Winfrey and Phil Donahue, Anderson Cooper will create a daily destination for multiple generations of women looking to be informed and entertained, gain perspective, and stay connected to each other and the world around them.
Cooper will continue to anchor CNN’s “Anderson Cooper 360,” a provocative alternative to the typical network evening newscast, airing weeknights at 10 p.m. ET. Cooper joined CNN in December 2001 and served as CNN’s weekend anchor before moving to prime time in March 2003 following the war in Iraq. In addition to reporting for CNN, Cooper, an award-winning journalist, also provides reports for CBS’s “60 Minutes.” Dispatches from the Edge, Cooper’s memoir about covering the South Asia tsunami, Hurricane Katrina and other news events, topped the New York Times Bestsellers List and other bestseller charts. Before joining CNN, Cooper was an ABC News correspondent and host of the network’s reality program, “The Mole.” He anchored ABC’s live, interactive news and interview program, “World News Now,” as well as providing reports for “World News Tonight,” “20/20” and “20/20 Downtown.”
Cooper graduated from Yale University in 1989 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science. He also studied Vietnamese at the University of Hanoi.
The show will be based in New York City and produced by Telepictures Productions in association with StrongChild Productions and Anderson Cooper will serve as an Executive Producer.
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