MSNBC MAY BE COMING UP ROSIE

Rosie O'Donnell may be returning to television on the cable news network MSNBC going head-to-head against Larry King, the New York Times reported today (Tuesday). The newspaper, which cited unnamed executives on both sides of the netotiations, said that O'Donnell would likely replace Live with Dan Abrams in the 9:00 p.m. hour. The newspaper also observed that a podcast on lyingonthebeach.com described O'Donnell as saying that she would soon be competing against "the guy with the suspenders and the long, long face." The Times also indicated that Tucker Carlson, the one MSNBC talk-show host who is sympathetic to the Bush administration, is in danger of cancellation because of low ratings. Carlson himself seemed to acknowledge as much last Friday when he closed his show by remarking, "Thanks to all eight of you for watching."

IMUS TO RETURN ON "RURAL" NETWORK

Don Imus's frequent appearance in cowboy hat, flannel shirts and boots may have been just what it took to get him back on television. Published reports indicated today (Tuesday) that Imus's new radio show, which goes on the air on New York's WABC-AM on Dec. 3 (and is due to be syndicated by ABC Radio), will be simulcast by RFD-TV, a Nashville cable network that focuses on rural areas. Patrick Gottsch, RFD-TV founder and president, would only confirm that he was in talks with Imus, but he told the Nashville Tennessean Monday, "The biggest obstacle we've had in the last three years is convincing urban-based program directors in New York, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles, and so on that they need to be carrying this 'rural' network. Imus helps us cross those borders."

WGA STRIKE DRAWING PRESS CRITICISM

The strike of the Writers Guild of America against movie and TV producers has failed to attract important support from other writers -- particularly those writing for the news media. The trade paper Variety and the New York Times are among the publications that have criticized the WGA, with Variety claiming today (Tuesday) that members of the guild have been ordered not to discuss the strike with reporters. Representatives of the WGA, it said, "are potentially hurting their cause by being so slow to explain their side to the media." And the Times quoted one writer as conceding that "the general public has no understanding of the issues that we are facing." The newspaper thencommented that picketing "writers will find it no small task in coming weeks to block a production apparatus that in the Los Angeles area alone is spread across more than 100 studio facilities, several hundred post-production houses, and numerous location shoots that move from day to day."

CBS NEWSCAST TO AIR ON GAY CHANNEL

The gay-lesbian cable network Logo plans to launch CBS News on Logo next Monday at 7:00 p.m., a half-hour newscast produced by CBS News, the Hollywood Reporter reported today (Tuesday). The newscast grew out of the three-minute features produced by the CBS News unit for Logo, a corporate sibling, that premiered two years ago. According to the trade publication, the show will focus on issues affecting homosexuals, particularly as they relate to politics, HIV/AIDs, entertainment and sports.

MONDAYS ARE FOR DANCING

ABC again danced away with the ratings Monday night as its Dancing With the Stars recorded a 13.4 rating and a 20 share in the 8:00 p.m. hour and a 13.8/19 at 9:00 p.m., according to preliminary figures released by Nielsen today. (Due to technical difficulties, some major markets were not included in the initial results.) CBS took the 10:00 p.m. hour with CSI: Miami drawing a 10.6/17. In the same hour NBC's Journeyman appeared close to the end of its journey as it wound up with a 3.8/6.

Cinemark Movie Club
Brian B.