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‘AFFAIR’ TO FORGET FORMAT

“A Current Affair,” the eight-year-old syndicated magazine series that has dropped off sharply in the ratings since the early ’90s, will get a complete makeover for the 1995-96 season.

Also the company will spend a hefty $4 million in marketing and advertising to relaunch the show on Sept.11, said Greg Meidel, president of Twentieth TV, the distributor of “Affair,” at a press luncheon on June 13.

On the heels of the firing of Steve Dunleavy, managing editor of “Affair” and a senior reporter for the show since it began in 1987, the two new executive producers John Tomlin and Bob Young talked about a number of other changes to take place over the next three months:

* The likelihood of a new anchor, or anchors, to replace current host Penny Daniels, who’ll be asked to stay on as a reporter. If a second anchor joins the show, he or she could work out of the Los Angeles bureau, which will take on greater importance as “Affair” beefs up its coverage of showbiz.

* No more paying for stories, unless it’s necessary to get a crucial guest to sit for a crucial interview – and in that case the arrangement would be disclosed on the air. “We’ve got to restore credibility to the show,” says Tomlin.

* No more dramatic reenactments to hook viewers, particularly for sensational stories.

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