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John Kiesewetter on the world of local and national TV

Senior Entertainment Reporter John Kiesewetter has been covering TV and media issues for 20 years. After joining the Cincinnati Enquirer in 1975 as a summer intern, he worked as a county government and suburban reporter; assistant city editor and suburban editor; and features editor supervising the Life section. He has a B.S. in journalism from Ohio University.

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Thursday, June 29, 2006

No "Lion" in a Theater

If you missed "A Lion in the House," you can order a DVD copy ($29.95) of the four-hour documentary about five Cincinnati area kids with cancer. Copies will be available sometime next month through You can also order the companion book for $19.95.

If you wanted to see the film in a local theater, you'll have to wait even longer. Producers had hoped to arrange a local screening in June or July, but now they're looking at August.... though that might not happen. They're just not sure how many people are interested in going to a theatrical screening after the national telecast June 21-22.

"A Lion in the House" was a moderate ratings success in Cincinnati. The two-night broadcast averaged a 1.2 rating (about 10,500 homes) on CET. That’s higher than the 1.0 rating for most PBS prime-time documentaries on CET, but lower than CET’s prime-time average (1.3) for normal programming, says Grace Hill, CET program director. The show generated a lot of calls, she says. "It was a difficult show to watch, but very powerful."

More CET
CET needs your help. To be precise, CET needs your money. The station is $68,000 shy of a balanced budget for the fiscal year ending Friday. The station was about $220,000 away from its goal at the first of June, before the on-air pledge days. CET also is worried about next year’s budget, knowing that the station’s PBS costs will increase 6.8%, and that federal funding could be cut by Congress, says Susan Howarth, CEO and president. For more info go to

Smooth jazz returns
Good news for smooth jazz fans. I just discovered Greg Brown’s smooth jazz internet station WINR Smoothjazz4u from his home in Mason. He says he has over 25,000 listeners a week at
Brown this summer also is bringing smooth jazz to nonprofit WAIF-FM (88.3) on 4-5 p.m. Fridays. Sounds like a great way to unwind if you’re headed home from work early on Friday.

And I can’t mention smooth jazz without plugging Michael Grayson’s “Cincinnati After Dark” smooth jazz show Saturday night on WARM98 (98.5).

Welcome back, DeVito!
Have you seen the clever parody of the "Friends" open in commercials for FX’s "It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia" (10 & 10:30 p.m. today, FX)? Danny DeVito joins the cast for the second season, his first regular sitcom role since "Taxi." DeVito plays Frank Reynolds, estranged father of Dennis (Glenn Howerton) and Sweet Dee (Kaitlin Olson), regulars at Paddy’s Irish Pub in Philadelphia. This "Cheers" knock-off, which premiered last summer, is rated TV-MA for its strong language and adult themes.


at 6/29/2006 10:18 AM Blogger NKYGal said...

I am so excited about "It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia". The commercials look great.

at 6/29/2006 9:58 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

AllAccess (radio trade website) is reporting that "1360 Homer, The Sports Animal" will move to 1530 AM on July 7th.

No word on the fate of liberal talk WCKY.

at 6/30/2006 6:51 AM Anonymous Bearman said...

Isn't it about time PBS went commercial? They do have some great programs on at times which I enjoy but I think I would prefer to watch 2 minutes of commercials every 15 minutes than have to sit through the long drawn out breaks of the funding drives.

Even if I am into a show, when they break for one of them, I tend to switch channels and not switch back.

at 6/30/2006 8:39 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another radio site says that the formats will flip signals. Air America will go to 1360 and Homer will go to 1530. There are even more rumors about 1360 going Spanish. WCVG AM 1320 is rumored to go Spanish later this summer.

at 6/30/2006 11:25 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

i agree with bearman i would rather see a couple of commercials than the pledge breaks plusi dont know if its me but it seems to me that alot of the pbs programs are being formatted more like network tv ie segment lengths for commercials or syndication

at 6/30/2006 5:06 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

It looks like liberal talk will end up on 1360 on July 7th.

Whether it stays there down the road...

at 7/01/2006 10:57 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Could some PLEASE tell Marina Jurica on Ch. 5 that she doesn't need to give the WIND CHILL when it's 90 degrees out!

That piece of "weather-work" is just another "chilling" reason why WLWT remains mired in distant 4th! Brennan Donnellan is a genius!

Quick, someone help...I'm FREEZING!!!

at 7/01/2006 12:10 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just noticed something...

At the bottom of Channel 12's website, it says that they are "A New Generation of News"....

Wasn't that like, 45094590 years ago?!?!?!

at 7/01/2006 6:18 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, if your 300 years old its a new generation of news!

at 7/02/2006 4:39 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Has Kiese or someone at the Enquirer done a story on the WCKY/WSAI swap, or am I just not finding it online? (I'm out of the paper's distribution area.)

Rick Bird had something in the Post the other day, but I'd like to see Kiese's take on it.

at 7/03/2006 10:48 AM Blogger BMurdock said...

I loved Sunny in Philadelphia last summer. It's kind of a bizarro Seinfeld. I say that cause it's a little more twisted and off the wall. Been out of town for a few days so I still haven't caught the new episode - can't wait!

It's about flippin time Clear Channel started to take Homer seriously and put them on the more powerful 1530 frequency. I suggested this years ago...

at 7/10/2006 7:19 PM Blogger newsdirector5 said...

hey vote for your top 5 at 11. The voting lines are open till 830

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