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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

News wins out....Nightline on ABC on top in ratings

For the first time ever, ABC News' Nightline is No. 1 in total viewership during a fourth quarter, with an average of 3.93 million tuning in.
Nightline beat the competition -- NBC's Tonight Show (3.88 million) and CBSLate Show With David Letterman (3.6 million) -- in total viewers as well as in the key news demo of adults 25-54, withNightline averaging 1.61 million vs. Tonight's 1.59 million and Late Show's 1.57 million, according to Nielsen data.
The ABC news program's ratings were up 16% in total viewers, 15% in adults 25-54 and 14% in the adults 18-49 demo (1.27 million) compared to the previous quarter.
Nightline is No. 1 among total viewers and in adults 25-54 season-to-date in its time slot. This is significant as it is the first time at this point during the season that the program has remained on top since 1993-94 when David Letterman started his late-night gig at CBS.

Source Variety (excerpted above), Hollywood Reporter and New York Times.

MGM launches classic TV service to roar like the Fonz

LA Times Company Town Blog:

In one of its first moves after emerging from bankruptcy proceedings, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios is creating a national television programming service -- stocked with episodes of such classic sitcoms as "Happy Days" and "Laverne & Shirley" -- to sell to television stations across the country.
The joint venture, called Me-TV, is an expansion of MGM's collaboration with Chicago-based TV station owner Weigel Broadcasting. (Me-TV stands for "memorable entertainment television.") Two years ago, the two companies formed ThisTV -- a programming service that featured B-level movies that had otherwise been sitting in MGM's vault. 
ThisTV was offered to TV stations looking for low-cost programming to fill their digital spectrum. The network is now available in about 85% of homes with televisions in the U.S. Me-TV is similarly positioned to be sold to TV stations.  Weigel will schedule the network's programming, and MGM will handle distribution sales.
ThisTV offers a mix of movies and TV shows, but Me-TV is designed to showcase nostalgic TV programs, including "Cheers," "MASH," "The Dick Van Dyke Show," "The Bob Newhart Show" and the "Green Hornet."  Weigel is currently broadcasting Me-TV on its stations in Chicago and Milwaukee, which television aficionados know as the home of basement dwellers "Laverne & Shirley."
"One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, Schlemiel, Schlimazel, Hasenpfeffer Incorporated!"
-- Meg James
Photo: Penny Marshall, rear, and Cindy Williams as the respective title characters of "Laverne & Shirley." Courtesy: MGM

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