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Pair try to revive ratings for ‘Montel’

CBS TV Distribution brings in Preston, Davilas

Having lost 20% of its household audience in the last year, CBS TV Distribution’s “The Montel Williams Show” has brought in a new director, Scott Preston, and hired George Davilas to occupy the new post of supervising producer.

The 20% plunge season to date (through Aug. 19) represents a bigger falloff in homes and in adults 25-54 (the show’s demo target) than that of any other returning talkshow in firstrun syndication in the last year.

But despite the troubled Nielsens, CBS Distribution has engineered some improved clearances for the show’s 17th season beginning Sept. 10. In New York, “Montel” moves from the weak MyNetworkTV station WWOR at 4 p.m. to the Fox O&O WNYW at 10 a.m. WFLA Tampa, Fla., has upgraded “Montel” from noon to 1 p.m., and WKYC Cleveland has elevated it from noon to 2 p.m. In Orlando, Fla., “Montel” sheds WRBW, channel 65, at 4 p.m., for WOFL, channel 35, at noon.

Preston replaces Heather Smith-Prout as director.

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