Aug 4, 2010

Carl Kasell wipes the announce-booth floor with Howard Stern

It was semi-retired NPR newscaster Carl Kasell, not gazillion-dollar controversialist Howard Stern who was elected by web users to the National Radio Hall of Fame this week. Kasell also bested MoneyTalk host Bob Brinker and country deejay Bob Kinsley in the category of nationally active broadcasters. Kasell is still active — keeping score on Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me! while serving as NPR's ambassador on the pubradio meet-n-greet circuit. Westwood One will distribute a two-hour Hall of Fame induction broadcast Nov. 6. Urban radio tycoon Cathy Hughes and the late Memphis recording pioneer Sam Phillips are among the other inductees.

PBS arts website launches on Aug. 23

PBS's long-discussed arts website goes online Aug. 23, President Paula Kerger announced at the TCA Press Tour today (Aug. 4) in Los Angeles, reports USA Today. Visitors will be able to watch national PBS programming and shows previously run by their local stations. Last year PBS received a $100,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for the website. PBS also continues work on its upcoming once-weekly evening of arts programming for broadcast. (PBS image: Kerger onstage at Press Tour)

Blame game on Long Island

Who's to blame for the "11th hour scramble" on behalf of Long Island's WLIU? The New York Daily News quotes anonymous sources who criticize general manager Wally Smith as a procrastinator who didn't pursue prospective donors aggressively enough. Smith says the newspaper's sources are "out of the loop." Link to earlier coverage.

Yoko Ono appears for PBS at TCA Summer Press Tour

The spotlight shines on PBS today (Aug. 4) and Thursday at the ongoing Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles. PBS President Paula Kerger faces the press this morning; no doubt the Los Angeles Times' story today on KCET's woes will generate questions. (Much more on KCET coming soon from Current.) At 2 p.m. LA time, PBS assembles a panel of stars of yesteryear to celebrate its Pioneers of Television doc. On stage will be Mike Connors, a.k.a. detective Joe Mannix; Robert Conrad of Wild Wild West and Black Sheep Squadron; Linda Evans of Dynasty; Martin Landau, a TV veteran of everything from a Twilight Zone in 1959 to Entourage in 2008; and Nichelle Nichols, who broke racial barriers with her role as Lieutenant Uhura in Star Trek.

But perhaps the most talked-about session is the big finish at 5:30 p.m. Thursday. Yoko Ono, who rarely speaks to the press, will talk about the American Masters film, "Lennon NYC." Ono narrates the prologue to the doc. Accompanying her on stage is Susan Lacy, series creator and exec producer.

Immediately following, PBS wraps up with the dreamy-sounding "cocktails and buffet dinner on the Stardust rooftop."

UPDATE: Masterpiece's Twitter feed reports this important news, that British actor Benedict Cumberbatch was spotted eating eggs Benedict.