Tribune Faces Bankruptcy, Hefner Skips Out on Dad

cityfile · 12/08/08 10:26AM

♦ The Tribune Co. is now hovering dangerously close to bankruptcy. [NYT]
♦ Media companies have let 30,000 people go thus far this year. [AdAge]
♦ Christie Hefner is stepping down as CEO of Playboy. [Bloomberg]
♦ It's now official: David Gregory is the new host of Meet the Press. [NYT]
♦ The New York Times Co. says it plans to borrow $225 million against the value of its new office building to "ease a potential cash flow squeeze." [NYT]
♦ More on the changes to NBC's executive ranks last week. [Variety]
♦ Ad agencies are bracing for a round of deep cost cuts. [NYP]
♦ Wowowow.com, the site featuring writing by the likes of Liz Smith and Lesley Stahl, has raised $1.5 million from Bob Pittman, among others. [NYP]
Four Christmases was No. 1 at the box office this weekend for a second week in a row. [Reuters]

David Gregory Caught In 'Nervous' Lie Scandal!

Hamilton Nolan · 12/08/08 09:24AM

People across the political spectrum had mixed feelings about Tim Russert, the recently deceased former host of Meet The Press. But whether you thought he was the toughest interviewer in DC or a toadying cock-gobbler to power, you had to admit that he probably got his job based on a genuine zeal for reporting, rather than because he was some network exec's ideal of a telegenic newsman. Now that David Gregory has taken over the gig, we'll get to see the network-ideal-telegenic-gasbag type in action. Problem one: his insincere self-deprecation skills:

Donald Gets Served, Britney's Bummer of a Birthday

cityfile · 12/04/08 06:58AM

♦ It's not just creditors going after Donald Trump these days: An employee of Trump's golf course in LA says in a lawsuit that the club prohibited her from taking lunch and bathroom breaks. She's only asking for $15,000, though, so obviously she didn't learn much during her stint working for the real estate mogul. [TMZ]
♦ A lawyer for Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos says there's "not a shred of truth" to the rumors the couple is splitting up. [OK!]
♦ Britney Spears' birthday party didn't exactly go as planned. None of her close friends showed up and onlookers say she spent the whole time looking "vacant" and "empty." [R&M, P6]
♦ NBC is furious that news of David Gregory's Meet the Press promotion leaked earlier this week. The likely culprit? NBC political director Chuck Todd. [P6]

TONY Up for Sale, Dark Day in Publishing

cityfile · 12/03/08 11:35AM

Time Out New York is now up for sale for $40 million. [Times UK]
♦ A major reorganization at Random House was announced today by the company's new CEO, Markus Dohle. [NYO]
♦ Simon & Schuster is laying off 35 people. [Gawker]
♦ NBC appears to have settled on David Gregory as the new host of Meet the Press, but the network has yet to finalize the deal. [NYT]
Tina Fey didn't get a $5 million book deal. It was $6.9 million. [NYP]
♦ Are you an unemployed writer? Get in touch with Tina Brown! [NYO]
♦ Miles O'Brien is departing CNN. [TVN]

Tall Clown Will Host TV News Anachronism

Pareene · 12/02/08 12:58PM

Extremely tall man David Gregory will be your next host of Meet the Press. He's still famous mostly for dancing and for arguing with Bush press secretaries, which proves that he's a serious journalist, and it also served the press well to look like it was totally standing up to Bush just as it served the administration well to look like innocent victims of the liberal media. That is how the world works. Who knows how he'll perform on that show, because frankly the format itself is outdated and useless. The late Tim Russert was no prize either, friends. But Gregory is just... kind of annoying.

Is David Gregory In? Is Anna Wintour Out?

cityfile · 12/02/08 12:35PM

♦ No official confirmation yet, but media insiders say David Gregory has been tapped to take over as host of Meet the Press. [Politico]
♦ It's rumored Carine Roitfeld is replacing Anna Wintour at Vogue. [Gawker]
♦ A former employee of Charles Kushner is accusing him of funneling cash from his real estate empire to prop up Jared Kushner's Observer. [Daily Intel]
Harvey Weinstein owes Cindy Adams $10,000. [NYP]
♦ Condé Nast has shuttered its social networking site Flip.com. [Gawker]
♦ CBS is producing a new hidden camera show with Ashton Kutcher. [NYT]
Katie Couric has a new haircut, in case you haven't noticed. [HuffPo]
♦ Arianna Huffington's how-to book for aspiring bloggers. [Jossip]
♦ Ever fantasized about having lunch with Nation editor Katrina vanden Heuvel? You can—for $2,500. [NYO]

David Gregory To Run Meet The Press?

Ryan Tate · 12/01/08 08:03PM

The Huffington Post reported David Gregory will take over for Tim Russert as permanent moderator of Meet The Press after beating out finalists Andrea Mitchell, Gwen Ifill and Chuck Todd. NBC told Politico, "I don't know where they are getting this," and Gregory's agent would neither confirm nor deny to the Observer. Dark-horse candidate Katie Couric is reportedly not interested. Odd that NBC News would leak to HuffPo, given the network division's apparent long-running feud with publisher Arianna Huffington, but then there have been signs that the bad feelings have perhaps been dropped.

Sweeps Ratings, Layoffs & Super Bowl Ads

cityfile · 11/26/08 10:06AM

♦ CBS is expected to win November sweeps for the eighth straight year. [AP]
♦ Another victim of the recession: publishing industry lunches. [NYO]
♦ The Super Bowl isn't looking up for NBC. Sales of 30-second ads have slowed and there are rumors some companies are now asking for discounts. [AP]
♦ In an attempt to ride Barack Obama's coattails to relevancy, MTV is planning a "Rock 'N Roll Inaugural Ball" for January 20. [AdAge]
Life & Style is on life support and is laying off staff. [NYP]
♦ Contenders to take over Meet the Press include David Gregory, Gwen Ifill, Andrea Mitchell, and NBC political director Chuck Todd. The news may be announced December 7th. [LAT]

McCain on SNL, How Palin Was Punked

cityfile · 11/03/08 10:40AM

♦ John McCain's appearance on Saturday Night Live didn't generate Sarah Palin-like ratings, but it was still an impressive showing nonetheless. [THR]
♦ No word yet on who will take over NBC's Meet the Press. Chuck Todd, David Gregory, Gwen Ifill, and even Katie Couric all remain possibilities. [NYT]
♦ CBS is on a primetime ratings roll, although Sumner Redstone is still screwed, apparently. [NYT, NYT]
♦ Another profile of Rachel Maddow, just in case the 237 other pieces on MSNBC's rising star in recent weeks have yet to whet your appetite. [NYM]
♦ In case you missed it, the clip of Sarah Palin getting punked by a couple of Montreal radio personalities, who explain how they managed to get through to her. [ABC]

Harvey Weinstein Is Not Happy

cityfile · 10/01/08 06:01AM

Harvey Weinstein may be a million bucks poorer today. Or maybe not! After yesterday's email debacle, Harvey says he'll donate $1 million to the Robin Hood Foundation once he can verify that Scott Rudin's email is "authentic," which means he'll probably conduct an "investigation" into the matter until it blows over. [P6]
♦ Janet Jackson has been released from the hospital. But fiancé Jermaine Dupri doesn't seem too concerned. He hasn't missed any of his scheduled party appearances the past few days. [People, R&M]
♦ Britney Spears' lawyers have been working overtime to quash the sex tape she made with Adnan Ghalib. [The Sun]
♦ Salma Hayek was spotted in Paris with her ex Francois-Henri Pinault, which means it's time to start speculating about whether they're getting back together. [Daily Star]

Gregory In, Olbermann and Matthews Out

cityfile · 09/08/08 05:58AM

Following accusations that the network had veered too far to the left and after months of internal tension, MSNBC has decided to drop Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann from anchoring coverage of the election. David Gregory of NBC News will anchor the debates and election night coverage instead. [NYT]

Pushy White House Reporter's Sad Future

Ryan Tate · 07/22/08 11:54PM

Following the death of NBC's Tim Russert, White House correspondent David Gregory was considered to be on the shortlist to succeed him on Meet The Press. Gregory is known for aggressively questioning White House officials and at one point so upset Bush press secretary Tony Snow that Snow accused him of partisanship, a remark for which Snow later apologized. While such assertiveness no doubt provided some cathartic release to critics of the administration, particularly those outraged at the feeble White House press corps, it may not be enough to get Gregory that Meet The Press gig or any other anchor job. In fact, the Observer today paints a rather grim picture of Gregory's immediate future, asking if he's a "lame duck" at the network, destined end up like — gasp — fellow White House troublemaker Sam Donaldson:

David Gregory: You Say 'Jerk'

Pareene · 04/30/08 11:09AM

Former White House correspondent and current MSNBC host David Gregory just may be taking over for Chris Matthews once Matthews' very expensive contract is up next year. It is hoped, by MSNBC brass, that the kinda well-liked Gregory will be less of a headache than the notorious diva Matthews. But maybe he'll be just as bad! We asked for your stories about Gregory, and you delivered. As we said yesterday, his reputation in DC was not particularly bad for a TV "star." But that town is sycophantic enough to forgive a lot. So far, you all agree that David Gregory is, in fact, a jerk. Your personal stories of jerkdom, after the jump (and feel free to send more).

David Gregory: Jerk?

Pareene · 04/29/08 04:17PM

MSNBC took away Tucker Carlson's show because it was terrible and no one watched it. They gave to former White House correspondent David Gregory (the tall guy). We're not sure if his show is terrible or not, because no one still watches it. But regardless, rumors continue to fly that Gregory is being "groomed" to take the place of Hardballer Chris Matthews. Matthews is a network star, but he comes with a lot of baggage, like accusations of sexism, embarrassing magazine profiles, and his inability to deal politely with his staff. Gregory—famous for, in addition to his height, his testy and sarcastic exchanges with Bush press secretaries—doesn't have the ratings to justify any of this yet, obv, but supposedly CBS wants him so therefore NBC needs him even more because that's how TV works with its "talent." But would replacing Matthews with Gregory be even more of a disaster?

Today on Today: The Fat Ladies Sing

Jessica · 10/04/05 07:50AM

There's a highly sensitive feature on the Today show, where David Gregory is sitting down with 3 obese woman to talk about weight discrimination. After an intro video featuring folks around Rockefeller talking about how extremely overweight individuals strike them as lazy, we cut to the heavyset guests, one of whom looks so pissed that she might destroy everything in the studio. The segment is titled "Don't Hate Me Because I'm Fat," and as these woman sadly present their stories, we're left with a major question: Are we supposed to not hate them despite their being fat, or we shouldn't hate them specificially because they're fat?