Not Today, But Pauley Will Be Back Next Year6/08/2003 08:00:00 PM Eastern
Fresh off her retirement from Dateline NBC, Jane Pauley doesn't plan to stay out of work for long. In what is likely to be its highest-profile launch thus far, still-young syndicator NBC Enterprises is planning to premiere the unofficially titled The Jane Pauley Show
in fall 2004.
The company's not talking, but NBC is near to finalizing a deal in which Pauley, 52, would host her own show out of New York. That said, there is no guarantee of time periods for the show on the NBC owned-and-operated stations or on the Hearst-Argyle and Gannett stations with whom NBC partners on syndicated projects.
A successful launch of Pauley's show will depend on the failure of at least one major morning talk show. Industry statistics alone guarantee that, out of the current crop of major morning talkers—Buena Vista's The Wayne Brady Show, King World's Living It Up! With Ali & Jack, Warner Bros.'The Ellen DeGeneres Show
and The Sharon Osbourne Show, and NBC Enterprises' own The John Walsh Show
—at least one of them, and likely more, won't be back in fall 2004.
NBC's O&Os plan to fill their morning spots next fall with Ellen, Walsh
and reality strip Starting Over.
already is struggling, notching a 1.3 household rating in the May sweeps, down 13% from its performance in February. Although daytime talk shows have ebbs and flows, if Walsh continues to trend downward, Pauley may fall into his old slots.
Pauley's background and previous success hosting NBC's Today
show and co-anchoring Dateline NBC
could augur well for her future in syndication.
The public is already highly familiar with Pauley and, if Today's Katie Couric's turn on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno is any indication, is receptive to seeing favorite news personalities in different arenas. Moreover, Pauley's warm interview style and on-air presence should be a good fit for daytime television.
NBC Enterprises already has some success in giving proven news personalities syndicated shows, with weekly-hour The Chris Matthews Show
arguably the syndicator's best ratings story this year.