CBS is expected to post a huge rating March 10 with a two-hour special of largely unseen footage from the Sept. 11 World Trade Center attacks, and the broadcast may be commercial-free. CBS has approached advertisers about being the sole sponsor of the broadcast for an estimated $3.5 million to $4 million. The sponsor could open the show with a brief intro from its CEO. Or CBS could follow NBC's 1997 lead, when Ford was the sole sponsor of "Schindler's List" and aired special ads at the start and end.
In 1996, Michael Kinsley was an inside-the-Beltway icon as editor of The New Republic and the ideological and volume foil to Pat Buchanan on CNN's "Crossfire." But he unleashed a shocker by moving to the other Washington to start Slate, the Webzine from Microsoft. Slate was the Talk of its day, generating lots of initial hype, but not much excitement thereafter. In December, Kinsley dropped another surprise when he said he had Parkinson's disease. Last week came another one: He said he would step down.
Evidently, Ted Turner didn't learn from ABC's "Politically Incorrect" host Bill Maher, who was skewered for statements he made about the 9/11 hijackers. Turner last week at Brown University said of the hijackers: "I think they were brave." He did add, though, they "might have been a little nuts."