Springer talker takes a bow in England

Brit station may have more suitable aud for host's material

LONDON — Jerry Springer is hoping to redirect his career as the U.K.’s equivalent of Letterman or Leno in a new latenight talk show for Channel 5.

The show, due to be unveiled at the channel’s fall programming launch today, will attempt to establish a more serious image for Springer after the murder of guest Nancy Campbell-Panitz threw the future of his U.S. confessional series into question.

Channel 5’s director of programs Dawn Airey has high hopes for the new show, which will be produced by Carlton TV. The channel’s previous venture into the format, the initially popular “The Jack Doherty Show,” proved short-lived.

But this is not the first time Springer has attempted to cash in on his U.K. popularity. He made a few episodes of his U.S. series with a British audience, and a latenight talkshow on ITV, also produced by Carlton, which was not recommissioned after a short run because of disappointing ratings.

Channel 5, with its reputation for cheap and cheerful lowbrow programming, thinks it has a more suitable audience than ITV for a series combining risque Springer material with celebrity chat.