CNBC taps Brown for talker

Hourlong special to bow March 20, focus on H'wood

NEW YORK — CNBC has hired former New Yorker and Talk editor-in-chief Tina Brown — already a columnist for the Web site Salon and the Sunday Times of London — to host a primetime television series.

A quarterly special, the hourlong program “Topic A With Tina Brown” will feature the British fixture of the magazine world as she discusses biz with various guests.

Her first show, pegged to the Oscars, will air March 20 and will focus on Hollywood.

Though Brown has little experience as an anchor and the program will be live-to-tape, CNBC prexy Pamela Thomas-Graham said Brown’s a natural for the job.

“She’s someone who would be great on television. She is a noted journalist who will ask great questions and will frame the issues,” said Thomas-Graham.

Financial cabler has tried recently to move away from market-driven news in primetime to more general business stories, like its recent docu “The Big Heist,” which focused on the corporate shenanigans at AOL Time Warner.

“Topic A” will be executive-produced by Kathy O’Hearn, who has won five Emmy Awards.

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