Entertainment Tonight

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Entertainment Tonight
Entertainment Tonight Logo.png

2007–2008 season logo for Entertainment Tonight
FormatNews
Created byAl Masini
Presented byNancy O'Dell (2011–present)
Country of originUnited States
Language(s)English
No. of seasons30
Production
Executive producer(s)Linda Bell Blue
Producer(s)Kaylee Stacey
Running time30 minutes
Production company(s)Paramount Television (1981–2006)
in association with:
Cox Broadcasting (1981–1997)
Taft Entertainment Television (1981–1987)
Great American Broadcasting (1987–1991)
TeleRep (1981–1991)
CBS Paramount Television (2006–2007)
CBS Television Distribution (2007–present)
DistributorParamount Domestic Television (1981–2006)
CBS Paramount Domestic Television (2006–2007)
CBS Television Distribution (2007–present)
Broadcast
Original channelSyndicated
Picture format480i (SDTV) (1981–2008)
1080i (HDTV) (2008–present)
Original runSeptember 14, 1981 – present
External links
Website
 
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Entertainment Tonight
Entertainment Tonight Logo.png

2007–2008 season logo for Entertainment Tonight
FormatNews
Created byAl Masini
Presented byNancy O'Dell (2011–present)
Country of originUnited States
Language(s)English
No. of seasons30
Production
Executive producer(s)Linda Bell Blue
Producer(s)Kaylee Stacey
Running time30 minutes
Production company(s)Paramount Television (1981–2006)
in association with:
Cox Broadcasting (1981–1997)
Taft Entertainment Television (1981–1987)
Great American Broadcasting (1987–1991)
TeleRep (1981–1991)
CBS Paramount Television (2006–2007)
CBS Television Distribution (2007–present)
DistributorParamount Domestic Television (1981–2006)
CBS Paramount Domestic Television (2006–2007)
CBS Television Distribution (2007–present)
Broadcast
Original channelSyndicated
Picture format480i (SDTV) (1981–2008)
1080i (HDTV) (2008–present)
Original runSeptember 14, 1981 – present
External links
Website

Entertainment Tonight is a daily tabloid television entertainment television news show that is syndicated by CBS Television Distribution throughout the United States, Canada (on Global) and in many countries around the world. Linda Bell Blue is currently the program's executive producer. The program makes the claim that it is "the most watched entertainment newsmagazine in the world" (though by what measures this claim is verified is unknown). It is the longest-running entertainment news program, with its first broadcast on September 14, 1981, and was the first syndicated program distributed via satellite. The primary anchor since 1984 had been Mary Hart, who exited the show on May 20, 2011. Mark Steines and Nancy O'Dell took on the roles of primary hosts of the show once Hart left. Nancy O'Dell took on the role as sole host of the show after Steines left the show on July 27, 2012. A new co-host is expected to be named soon.

It was announced on January 30, 2006, that Entertainment Tonight was renewed through the 2011–2012 season, which was the show's 30th season. On September 8, 2008, Entertainment Tonight began to air in high definition with the move of the program from their longtime home at Stage 28 on the Paramount Pictures studio lot to Stage 4 at CBS Studio Center, one of the final steps involving the incorporation of Paramount's former syndication arm, Paramount Domestic Television, into CBS' distribution arms and the adoption of the CBS Television Distribution name, which all took place following the breakup of the original Viacom in 2005.[1]

In its early years, ET was co-produced with TeleRep (who left after 1991), Cox Broadcasting (who left after 1997), and Taft/Great American Broadcasting (who left after 1991). Paramount Domestic Television would later absorb syndication companies that the latter two had once owned: Rysher Entertainment (formerly owned by Cox) and Worldvision Enterprises (formerly owned by Taft/Great American).

Contents

Overview

Format

In its current form, Entertainment Tonight airs as half of a one-hour entertainment news block that also includes a spin-off, The Insider. Three versions of the show are compiled and made available to broadcasters: a "standalone" version, a version for stations that air The Insider just beforehand, and one for those that air The Insider immediately after. Recently, only the "standalone" version is aired, even on stations that air ET and The Insider back-to-back (or vice-versa).

ET Weekend (formerly known as Entertainment This Week), a one-hour weekend edition, is also produced. Originally a recap of the week's news, most or all episodes later transitioned to have some sort of special theme; though the weekend edition has begun to use either format, most commonly editions showing replays of stories that were shown during the previous week's editions, depending on the episode. ET Radio Minute, a daily radio feature, is syndicated by Westwood One.

Composed of breaking news stories, exclusive set visits, first looks at upcoming film and television projects, and one-on-one interviews with Hollywood talents and celebrities, ET's regular segments include "The Latest News," a quick round up of the day's biggest stories; "Story from Studio 4," a lengthier analysis of Hollywood's hottest topics; "Real or Rumor," where rumors circulating Hollywood are confirmed or denied.

Background

Veteran television producer Alfred Masini, coming off his success with the 1980 debut of Solid Gold, was the program's creator. Richard Frank, president of Paramount Television, his vice president of programming, John E. Goldhammer, and his vice president of development, Mel Harris, hired managers and producers from local news stations such as original managing editor Jim Bellows, formerly of the Los Angeles Herald Examiner. Early on, Frank, Goldhammer, and Harris held many discussions with producers, writers, and directors about what kind of program ET should be. Although the pilot was executive produced by Jack Haley Jr., Andy Friendly was hired as the show's first producer. (Haley still remained on as executive consultant.) He left the show after 6 weeks and Goldhammer took it over. Goldhammer established the program's unique look, sound, pace and reporting style. Friendly put together a diverse staff ranging from former rock roadies to veteran television reporters of the Vietnam War era—some of whom continued to work on the show for more than twenty years. In 1982, Goldhammer hired Mary Hart and Leeza Gibbons to host the daily and weekend shows.

Controversy

In the early years, Entertainment Tonight, following a local newscast format, consisted primarily of coverage of the latest movies, music, and television. During Bellows' years the series also developed a series of investigative reports about Hollywood's drug use and hiring practices; but during the 1996–97 season ET began to include more sensational fare, featuring paid exclusive interviews with controversial and infamous newsmakers of the day, including disgraced Olympic figure skater Tonya Harding, who became notorious for her role in the conspiracy to physically attack rival Nancy Kerrigan at a 1994 U.S. Figure Skating Championships practice session; Amy Fisher, who appeared with Joey and Mary Jo Buttafuoco, reunited after Fisher's infamous assault on Mrs. Buttafuoco; convicted child molester Mary Kay Letourneau, who married Vili Fualaau;[2] and attorney Howard K. Stern, from the Anna Nicole Smith paternity controversy.[3][4] ET has also aired exclusive stories related to Anna Nicole Smith, including coverage of her funeral, and her surviving daughter.[5]

In 1996, actor George Clooney decided to boycott Entertainment Tonight to protest the presence of intrusive paparazzi after Hard Copy did an exposé about his love life, violating an agreement he had with Paramount, which produced both shows.[6] In a letter he sent to Paramount, Clooney stated that he would encourage his friends to do the same.[7] Although Clooney has since ended his boycott, Entertainment Tonight has continued to broadcast video and photography taken by celebrity-stalking paparazzi, with some of the staff of Hard Copy absorbed into the staff of Entertainment Tonight after that program's 1999 cancellation.

Hosts

Entertainment Tonight is currently hosted by Nancy O'Dell with several correspondents, including Chris Jacobs and Christina McLarty. Leonard Maltin is the film correspondent and reviewer for the show, while Andre Leon Talley covers the Hollywood fashion industry and red carpet events.

Special correspondents

Entertainment Tonight has many special correspondents who report on particular features for the show, usually having had a role in the program they work on. Paula Abdul was a special correspondent for ET's coverage of American Idol, and Dancing with the Stars had correspondents for the second season (Tatum O'Neal), third season (Lisa Rinna), fifth season (Donny Osmond), ninth season (Marie Osmond) and eleventh season (Niecy Nash). Diane Diamond is a special correspondent for high-profile trials; she featured coverage of the investigation following Michael Jackson's death in June 2009. Adam Lambert was the fashion correspondent at the 2010 Grammys. Melissa Rycroft was a special correspondent covering parties, award shows, and premieres.

Current on-air staff

Actress Ashley Benson being interviewed by Matte Babel Entertainment Tonight Canada reporter

Anchors

Correspondents

Former on-air staff

Entertainment Tonight in other countries

Competition

Despite stiff competition from Access Hollywood, Extra, TMZ, its own "sister" program The Insider, Inside Edition, Showbiz Tonight, and E! News, Entertainment Tonight remains one of the top 10 highest-rated syndicated programs. As of the fall of 2007, its daytime TV rankings were fluctuating between fourth and fifth place due to competition from fellow CBS-syndicated program Judge Judy.[8][9]

Footnotes

External links