CNN veteran tapped for Sunday news program
Longtime CNN correspondent Christiane Amanpour is ankling the all-news cabler to join ABC as the anchor of “This Week.”
Word of ABC News’ interest in Amanpour had leaked days ago, and the Alphabet confirmed the hire on Thursday morning.
Amanpour will officially join ABC in August. According to ABC News topper David Westin, Amanpour will also anchor primetime docs on international topics, as well as “appear on all other ABC News programs and platforms to provide international analysis of the important issues of the day.”
Amanpour is seen as a huge get for the Alphabet net — and might be seen as a big morale booster for ABC News, which is in the midst of a massive staff downsizing. And it’s a major loss for CNN, where Amanpour spent two decades as one of its best-known stars.
At “This Week,” Amanpour fills the void left when anchor George Stephanopoulos moved over to “Good Morning America,” which he now anchors with Robin Roberts.
Until she joins ABC this summer, Jake Tapper will fill in as temporary “This Week” host.
“Being asked to anchor ‘This Week’ and the superb tradition started by David Brinkley, is a tremendous and rare honor and I look forward to discussing the great domestic and international issues of the day,” Amanpour said. “I leave CNN with the utmost respect, love and admiration for the company and everyone who works here. This has been my family and shared endeavor for the past 27 years and I am forever grateful and proud of all that we have accomplished.”
Amanpour, who joined CNN in 1983 as an assistant in Atlanta, now serves as CNN’s chief international correspondent and anchor of the daily interview program “Amanpour” for CNN International. She first made a name for herself covering the Gulf War for CNN, soon after she was named an international correspondent for the channel.
She also served as a contributor to CBS’ “60 Minutes” from 1996 to 2005.
In announcing Amanpour’s move to ABC, Westin noted the reporter’s experience in covering most of the world’s major conflicts — including those in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, Rwanda and the Balkans.
“More than once over the years we’ve talked with Christiane about her joining us in one position or another,” Westin said in a note to staffers. “We are fortunate that this time it worked for Christiane and for us.”
Westin also noted that Amanpour’s presence will now give “This Week” more of an international perspective.
“With Christiane we have the opportunity to provide our audiences with something different on Sunday mornings,” he said. “Our international reporting has long been a hallmark of ABC News, part of the legacy Peter Jennings left for us. Christiane will bring the international and the domestic together, in the interviews she does and in the roundtable over which she presides.”
Ian Cameron will continue as executive producer of “This Week.”
As for her old stomping grounds, CNN Worldwide prexy Jim Walton said that “Amanpour” would end its run next month; a replacement will be named at a later date.
“CNN and Christiane helped make each other great,” Walton said.