NATPE: Larry King back in comfort zone

Veteran broadcaster looks to past and future in NATPE push

Larry King is happy to be back in familiar territory. The veteran yakker came to the NATPE confab here this week to promote his fledgling online show “Larry King Now,” and the trip had the added benefit of bringing him back to the city where he got his start in media more than 50 years ago.

He doesn’t recognize much of Miami any more, let alone the Fontainebleau hotel where the confab is being held. “It’s a little too big now,” he said. He recalled the days in the early when he hosted a nightly radio show from a yacht anchored across the street from the hotel (it was the vessel used in the ABC series “Surfside 6”). The Fontainebleau provided the food for the show. “The waiters would just roll the carts across the street to the yacht,” he recalled. “It’s very different now.”

As for his professional life, King noted that the more things change the more they stay the same. After leaving CNN two years ago, he now hosts a nightly half-hour interview show, “Larry King Now,” for Ora TV, an online network financed by one of the world’s richest men, Mexican mogul Carlos Slim.

“I’m still doing what I did 55 years ago, asking questions of people,” King said.

He’s had no trouble drawing guests for the show, which is shot at a studio in Glendale, but he misses being in on the live breaking news action. “Now” episodes typically air a day after they’re taped.

“I do miss being able to stay on top of a story that is breaking right now,” he said. Instead, the new show is “very casual setting — a little more intimate with the guests,” he said.

Ora TV is getting traction through its distribution partnership with Hulu Plus. And reps for King’s show were busy at NATPE setting up international syndication deals for online and TV.

For the first time in his long career, King is happy to be in a position to call some of the shots as a partner in Ora TV.

“I don’t answer to suits anymore,” he said. He’s also impressed by Slim’s vision of where the media biz is heading. He sees more media deals on the horizon for the mogul.

“He’s very progressive. He’s really into where technology is going,” King said.

Popular on Variety

More TV

  • THE BACHELORETTE - "The Bachelorette: Season

    'The Bachelor': ABC Reality Boss Talks Ratings Success, Diversity Backlash

    Last night, Peter Weber was unveiled, perhaps unsurprisingly, as the next Bachelor during the season finale of “Bachelor in Paradise.” Weber’s selection coincided with a season-high rating for “Paradise,” and caps a solid ratings summer for the “Bachelor” franchise. As ratings have been in decline across the board this summer, “The Bachelorette” and “Bachelor in [...]

  • Raising Dion

    TV News Roundup: Netflix Releases 'Raising Dion' Trailer

    In today’s TV news roundup, Netflix releases “Raising Dion’s” trailer and announces a number of premiere dates for its original series. DATES Netflix announced the premiere dates for several of its new and returning original series: Season 2 of “Carmen Sandiego” will launch Oct. 1; Deon Cole’s standup special “Deon Cole: Cole Hearted” will launch [...]

  • Jim Parrack

    '9-1-1: Lone Star' Adds 'True Blood' Alum Jim Parrack

    Fox’s “9-1-1: Lone Star” continues to round out its main cast. Jim Parrack has joined the upcoming drama in a series regular role. He joins previously announced series leads Rob Lowe and Liv Tyler. In the series, Lowe stars as Capt. Owen Strand, a sophisticated New York fireman who, along with his adult son, re-locates [...]

  • AT&T Time Warner Merger

    AT&T Considers Selling DirecTV (Report)

    Telecom giant AT&T is considering off-loading satellite TV subsidiary DirecTV, according to the Wall Street Journal, citing sources. The company has also mulled spinning off DirecTV into a separate company, as well as merging DirecTV’s assets with satellite-TV company Dish Network, said the outlet. AT&T declined to comment. Shares of AT&T, which trade under the [...]

  • Norman LearVariety Showrunners Dinner, Inside, Los

    Norman Lear Accepts Creative Conscience Award at Variety Showrunners Dinner

    Norman Lear accepted Variety’s Creative Conscience Award Tuesday night at the publication’s annual Showrunners Dinner. The award honors Lear for his work promoting important causes both inside and outside the entertainment industry. Lear, who appears on the current cover of Variety, recently renewed his overall deal at Sony Pictures Television. Speaking at the Showrunners Dinner [...]

  • Maria Bartiromo

    Maria Bartiromo Renews Pact With Fox News Media

    Maria Bartiromo will be on Fox Business Network and Fox News Channel for a while longer, after striking a new multi-year deal with Fox News Media. “Her exceptional insights and incredible work ethic have been of tremendous value to Fox Business and Fox News and we’re thrilled to have her continue anchoring each of her [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content