BET cuts programs, staff
By Allison Romano -- Broadcasting & Cable, 12/6/2002 8:33:00 AM
To make room for more entertainment fare, Black Entertainment Television will axe four programs -- Lead Story, BET Tonight with Ed Gordon, teen issue program Teen Summit and music show Cita's World -- by the end of the year. BET is also cutting about 40 staffers, or 12 percent of its total staff.
"Our new focus will strike a better balance between original programming and an increase in acquired shows," BET CEO Debra Lee said in a prepared statement.
Gordon's future with BET still needs to play out. The BET Nightly News, which draws off some CBS News product, will remain.
Plans to reinvigorate the Viacom Inc.-owned network call for adding more syndicated shows and original productions in prime time.
In November, BET's former programming chief, Curtis Gadson, stepped down, apparently at odds with the new programming strategy.
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