Tcalogo FROM TCA: Oprah Winfrey admits there may be some rocky times ahead for her new cabler.

But OWN already pulled off its first challenge: attracting audiences to its New Year’s Day launch. Even if OWN’s ratings are now settling back down to earth, Winfrey and channel CEO Christina Norman touted what they called an “incredibly strong start overall.”

“My expectation was just getting people to find it,” Winfrey told reporters at OWN’s portion of the TV Critics Assn. press tour in Pasadena on Thursday. “It surpassed expectations for me.”  

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Meanwhile, the success of CNN’s new “Piers Morgan Tonight” could hinge on marketing, the host said Thursday.

Unlike “Larry King Live,” which was a live interview program by its very name, Morgan’s interview show (which moves into the King timeslot on Jan. 17) will consist largely of pre-taped interviews.

What the show might lack in immediacy will be made up in promotability, Morgan told reporters during CNN’s portion of the TV Critics Assn. press tour in Pasadena.

“CNN’s problem was not Larry, but that it’s obsessed with live interviews,” he said. “It’s hard to promote live interviews.”

Morgan said he believed the show will benefit from the ability to promote clips and the actual sitdowns in the days leading up to the show. “That’s how we’ll get bigger ratings,” he said.

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