VH1 KILLS SHOW FEATURING KILLER
VH1 has canceled the reality series Megan Wants a Millionaire, which began airing on August 2,and the cable network is also likely to cancel I Love Money 3. Those are the two reality series that Ryan Jenkins appeared on before allegedly murdering his wife, Jasmine Fiore, and later committing suicide. In the former series, wealthy men compete for the attentions of a materialistic blonde. Jenkins reportedly was the winning contestant on the third season of the second series, I Love Money. The show features contestants from other VH1 shows competing for cash. It was reportedly in post production and not due to air until 2010. But Jenkins reportedly visited the show's production office to pick up a check for $5,200 on August 12, two days before Fiore's body was discovered. Both shows were produced by 51 Minds, which said Sunday that it had been unaware of Jenkins's criminal background. (He had been convicted in 2007 for assaulting a woman and was charged in June with misdemeanor battery for hitting Fiore.) "Obviously, if the company had been given a full picture of his background, he would never have been allowed on the show," 51 Minds said in a statement. Reporting on the case, the Orange County [CA] Register commented that it "cast an unsettling light on the casting practices of reality television, in particular the sometimes tawdry shows broadcast by VH1, a unit of Viacom." After an intense three-day manhunt, Jenkins's body was found in Hope, British Columbia Sunday hanging from a belt in his motel room. He was 32.
WILL SPONSORS SPURN CONTROVERSIAL TALK SHOWS?
The apparently successful boycott campaign against Fox News commentator Glenn Beck, who accused President Obama of being a racist and having a "deep-seated hatred for white people," could have implications for other programs featuring political commentaries -- right and left. According to an Associated Press report, which cited the group that spearheaded the Beck protest, 33 companies yanked their commercials from Beck's Fox News program. (For the most part, they were moved to other programs on the cable news network.) It quoted a spokesperson for Clorox as saying that it doesn't want to be "associated with inflammatory speech used by either liberal or conservative talk show hosts." However, a spokesperson for MSNBC told Advertising Age that Clorox had not pulled any of its spots from the channel, and a spokesperson for CNN said that "no advertiser has requested to withdraw any dollars from CNN." Such protests are not new. Witness similar boycott campaigns against talk show hosts Dr. Laura Schlessinger and Don Imus.
FOOTBALL IS FRIDAY-NIGHT LIGHT
Preseason football lifted Fox to an easy ratings victory Friday night, even if the audience for the Tennessee Titans/Dallas Cowboys match was nothing to cheer about. The game averaged just 6.31 million viewers. The game was the first at the Cowboys' new football stadium, which sported four gigantic Mitsubish Diamond Vision screens, costing a reported $40 million, that stretch from one 20-yard line to the other 20 yard line but hang so low over the field -- 90 feet -- that the Titan's A.J. Trapasso hit one of them with a punt. ESPN later reported that Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is reluctant to cover the estimated $2-million cost of raising the screens.
IN TOUGH TIMES, ANCHORS SELL THEIR CLOTHES
News anchors at TV stations across the country can now put their designer-label clothes up for sale on a website, TVNewsCloset.com, where they can be purchased by other TV news anchors. As reported by former Dallas Morning News TV critic Ed Bark on his UncleBarky.com blog, the website is the brainchild of Jolene DeVito, a former Dallas TV anchor, who indicated that clothing allowances for TV anchors have vanished in the economic downturn. "All clothing is pictured on the site, with prices and sizes included. There's also a description of where it's been, although specific stations and the sellers' identities aren't revealed," Bark wrote. The site also features fashion advice to anchors, such as, "Ladies, if you co-anchor with another woman, you should both keep a change of clothes at the station for those days when you clash or wear the same color."