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Sunday, December 23, 2007

Larry King & Reality Show

Saturday's The StarPhoenix had an interview with CNN's Larry King. Below is an excerpt:

Larry King grins when he looks back at how broadcasting mogul Ted Turner recruited him to be on CNN.

It was back in 1985 and King was doing a radio show in Washington, D.C.

Turner had been a frequent guest. So, when a prime slot opened up on Turner's then-five-year-old Cable News Network, Turner made King a simple offer.

"Ted gave me a unique contract," King recalls as he settles into his chair inside a hotel ballroom in Pasadena, Calif. "We (agreed to) a three-year contract. But at the end of a year, if either one of us was unhappy, we could get out."

"I knew the first night that I loved the show," he says. "I had never seen CNN because CNN wasn't in Washington. We didn't have cable. But I knew I loved it right away."

Ever since then, Larry King Live has been a staple on CNN -- and the channel's most popular program.

Although Larry King Live has undergone tweaks over the years, it still follows the same basic formula. The show is repeated a couple of times each day and also airs on satellite radio.

King admits that today's obsession with celebrities has influenced his range of guests. "It's a delicate balance," he says. "And this is a dilemma for anyone in the business."

Back when Larry King Live first started, King pretty well ruled the roost in this type of talk programming. Since then, several contenders have entered the arena.

"You know something, it's really funny," King reflects. "I never thought about 'ruling the roost.' All I ever thought about my whole career, I swear to you, is going in and doing a good job."


Mystery Journalist

This week's Mystery Journalist was Howard Kurtz.

Kurtz appeared this weekend on C-SPAN2's BookTV on After Words. Kurtz was interviewed by James Warren, the Managing Editor for the Chicago Tribune, about his most recent book Reality Show. Below is the video that has been posted on C-SPAN's website.

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