×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

ABC News expected to up Friedman

“ABC World News Tonight” executive producer Paul Friedman is expected to be named a vice president of ABC News early next week.

According to ABC sources, the leading candidate to succeed Friedman at “World News” is the newscast’s senior producer Dennis Dunlavey.

Another candidate reportedly in the running is “Primetime Live” senior producer Betsy West.

But ABC News insiders say that whoever gets the nod will need the approval of Peter Jennings. The “World News” anchor is currently reporting from war-torn Bosnia and it’s unlikely there will be any announcement on Friedman’s replacement before he returns.

Friedman was not available for comment.

Friedman, who just completed an unprecedented five-year stint at helm of the web’s flagship newscast, is credited with driving “World News” into its dominant position in the evening news race.

The newscast fought its way to the No. 1 position in the 1989 season and has held that position ever since.

With Jennings in the anchor chair, Friedman devised a blueprint for the newscast that moved away from a straight “news of the day” presentation, featuring a more analytical approach, with such regular features as “American Agenda” and “Person of the Week.”

The structure Friedman put in place was soon imitated by his competitors at “NBC Nightly News” and the “CBS Evening News.”

Friedman’s ascension to the executive suites comes at time of retrenchment at ABC, which is expected to include cutbacks at the news division.

ABC News insiders see Friedman as the key lieutenant to the division’s No. 2 Stephen Weiswasser, who was brought in by Capital Cities/ABC chieftains last year to trim costs.

More TV

  • Rachel Bloom and Aline Brosh McKenna'Jane

    Rachel Bloom on the 'Beautiful Mystery' of the 'Crazy Ex-Girlfriend' Series Finale

    While four seasons of “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” have explored musical genres from boy bands to country, the one type of music series co-creator and star Rachel Bloom admits the show will not explore before the end is Rebecca’s own style. “Basically the idea is that part of the music in her mind is her looking inside [...]

  • Netflix's Lisa Nishimura Named Indie Film,

    Netflix's Lisa Nishimura Named Indie Film, Documentary Features Head

    In the wake of Bela Bajaria’s recent move to lead Netflix’s international non-English original TV series, the online streamer is shuffling its leadership team to more clearly distinguish between development of its English and non-English language content. As a result, Netflix has elevated Lisa Nishimura to vice president of independent film and documentary features, a [...]

  • Family Guy Bob's Burgers

    Fox Entertainment Lays Out Programming Slate in Post-Disney Merger Sizzle Reel (Watch)

    Fox Entertainment unveiled a new sizzle reel on Wednesday night in the wake of the Disney-21st Century Fox merger officially closing, with the broadcaster touting its current series roster. The video features both scripted and unscripted programming across Fox’s lineup. Among the shows featured are legacy series like “The Simpsons,” “Family Guy,” and “Empire.” In [...]

  • Katherine Heigl

    Katherine Heigl Cast as Lead in CBS Comedy Pilot

    Katherine Heigl has been cast as the female lead in the CBS comedy pilot “Our House,” Variety has learned. The show centers around a devoted mom (Heigl) and dad, who are committed to raising their children with the love and support the mom never got as a kid, but discover how difficult that is with her insane [...]

  • Jussie Smollett Lee Daniels

    Lee Daniels Reveals the 'Empire' Team's 'Anger' and 'Sadness' at the Jussie Smollett Fallout

    In a video posted to his Instagram Wednesday afternoon, “Empire” creator Lee Daniels has let everybody know how he feels about the Jussie Smollett “incident.” “These past couple of weeks have been a freakin’ rollercoaster,” Daniels said in the video. “Me and my cast have experienced pain, anger, sadness and frustration, and really don’t know [...]

  • WGA Agents Contract Tug of War

    WGA Leaders to Meet With Showrunners on Agency Packaging Fight (EXCLUSIVE)

    WGA leaders are set to meet Wednesday night with a group of showrunners who are raising concerns about the guild’s handling of negotiations with talent agents over the issue of packaging fees and agency-affiliated productions. The meeting is set for 7:30 p.m. at WGA West headquarters. WGA West president David Goodman is expected to attend. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content