Melissa Harris-Perry to MSNBC Weekends…

MSNBC has announced that Melissa Harris-Perry will be getting a weekend show as Up with Chris Hayes and Weekends with Alex Witt have their time slots adjusted. Unlike when Up debuted Witt doesn’t lose any airtime this time.




NEW YORK—January 4, 2012—MSNBC contributor Melissa Harris-Perry is the latest addition to MSNBC’s expanding weekend lineup. Her new program, set to air Saturdays and Sundays 10a-noon ET, will debut on MSNBC February 4th. The announcement was made by MSNBC President Phil Griffin. Chris Hayes will continue to lead off MSNBC’s weekend programming with his popular roundtable program ‘Up,’ which will begin airing from 8-10am ET on both Saturdays and Sundays. MSNBC anchor Alex Witt will expand MSNBC’s live news coverage in both the morning and the afternoon, with “Weekends with Alex Witt” airing 7-8a ET Saturdays and noon-2p ET on Saturdays and Sundays.

Harris-Perry, a long-standing political analyst and contributor to MSNBC, is a frequent guest of “PoliticsNation” with Rev. Al Sharpton, and also serves as occasional host of “The Rachel Maddow Show” and “The Last Word.” A highly accomplished author, scholar and speaker, Harris-Perry’s new program will continue MSNBC’s trend of bringing intelligent, informed voices to the cable channel’s weekend programming.

“Melissa’s thoughtful analysis has been an incredible addition to our primetime programs and I’m thrilled to have her join our expanded weekend line-up,” said Griffin. “Alex Witt has led our weekend programming for many years and will continue to be our chief weekend news anchor, kicking-off and wrapping up our live coverage each day. Weekend mornings are a time when our audience wants intelligent political conversation, as the success of Chris Hayes has shown, in addition to coverage of all the headlines. As the political year gets underway, there’s no better time to build up our weekend coverage, which Alex has helmed so well for years.”

“This is an extraordinary opportunity,” said Harris-Perry. “All I’ve ever wanted to be is a teacher. Phil Griffin and MSNBC are giving me the chance to have a much bigger classroom. I’m particularly excited to join the growing weekend lineup where we have a chance to take a longer and broader view of the week’s political news.”

In addition to her role at MSNBC, Melissa Harris-Perry is also columnist for The Nation magazine, and will continue to write her monthly column, titled Sister Citizen. Harris-Perry is also a Professor of Political Science at Tulane University, where she will continue to teach, and is the Founding Director of the Anna Julia Cooper Project on Gender, Race, and Politics in the South, housed at the university’s Newcomb College Institute. A celebrated author, Harris-Perry recently published her second book, Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America (Yale 2011), which examines the effects of persistent harmful stereotypes on black women’s politics. Her first book, Barbershops, Bibles, and BET: Everyday Talk and Black Political Thought, won the 2005 W. E. B. Du Bois Book Award and 2005 Best Book Award from the Race and Ethnic Politics Section of the American Political Science Association.

In 2009, Harris-Perry became the youngest scholar to deliver the W.E.B. Du Bois Lectures at Harvard University, as well as the youngest woman ever to deliver the prestigious Ware Lecture. Harris-Perry received her B.A. in English from Wake Forest University, her Ph.D. in political science from Duke University and an honorary doctorate from Meadville Lombard Theological School.

Additional information about Harris-Perry’s new program will be released closer to its launch on February 4th.

26 Responses to “Melissa Harris-Perry to MSNBC Weekends…”

  1. Spud late to the dance today. But never fear, his faithful commenters took up the slack.

  2. His “faithful commenters” posted before the sun was up here. The boy’s gotta sleep sometime!

  3. Well…that was predictable. First Chris Hayes, followed by Alex Wagner…now Melissa Harris-Perry. Now, the question will be…who shall emerge as the next “regular” substitute host? Despite the recent attention to weekend programming by MSNBC, will the network rid themselves of the annoying (though successful) weekend documentaries? I find that less than likely. So, with their dayside and primetime lineup full (well, the 2nd hour of Hardball doesn’t count, does it?), I’m going to safely assume that the next potential “regular” may have to linger about for quite some time until a current host must be replaced.

  4. MSNBC is doing an excellent job of grooming the next generation of primetime hosts. Hayes, Wagner amd MHP are all very intelligent, thoughtful, and likable. It’s clear the the “shouting” mode of KO, Matthews and Big Ed are not the future there. It’s a promising sign.

  5. Hey, I guess this means less Lockup. Maybe the execs are finally getting it right.

  6. It means I can actually watch MSNBC on a weekend night if I feel like it. DVR in the morning, plug it in at night instead of watching Huckabee for 20 minutes before I realize, “Crap..why am I watching this crap?”

  7. So will this show follow in the footsteps of Up with Hayes, and Alex Wagner, and turn out to be another ripoff of ‘The Five’? I haven’t seen a description of its content yet, but I’d say there’s a good chance it will be.

  8. I can’t believe that Joe watched Huckabee for 20 minutes. I couln’t do that.

  9. “So will this show follow in the footsteps of Up with Hayes, and Alex Wagner, and turn out to be another ripoff of ‘The Five’?”

    ^Probable so. It’s a successful format that the ‘The Five’ ripped off from ‘The View’. There are no new formats in cable news anymore.

    I expect the next sub to get a show may be Chris Cizilla or Ezra Klein both who have preformed well of late and improved their on-air performance skills considerably.

    And of course Luke Russert is waiting in the wings; although I think he may be headed for bigger and better things on the mothership – ‘Today’, ‘MTP’ or ‘NBC News’ in the next few years.

  10. Yeah, it was easy to see this coming. I agree joeremi, MSNBC is grooming the next gen of primetime hosts. I say get on it already. I would love to see Alex, Chris, or MHP in primetime. If CNN thinks they are getting killed now, just wait until these folks are in primetime. CNN’s new ‘talent’ VP has her work cut out for her.

  11. If Sharpton is a “diversity” move, I’d ditch him for MHP tomorrow, then move Wagner up to the 5pm Hardball slot.

  12. So will this show follow in the footsteps of Up with Hayes, and Alex Wagner, and turn out to be another ripoff of ‘The Five’?

    LOL… good one, Johnny. As Fritz stated, it’s not like “The Five” was the first show to ever think of that format. There have been plenty of shows in the past, news and non-news, that have used panel style formats. Besides, “Up” started about 2 months after “The Five”.

    So, using Dollar’s logic, Chris Hayes and his team spent a mere 60 days to produce a show by ripping off another shows’ idea. That would be pretty tough seeing as how it takes a lot longer than 60 days for most shows to develop and produce their style and content. It’s not an overnight experiment.

    But, nice try anyway… it’s awfully cute when you try handing over credit to your preferred network of choice.

  13. Up w/Chris Hayes is a truly great show. You’re right, ProgLib, I just don’t see how Up is a ripoff of The Five.

  14. Oh yeah, it takes more than 60 days to put people around a table and have them talk. I think ‘The Five’ was put together in less than that time. And it takes a whole lot less than 60 days when you’re just creating one show after another, all of them patterned after a far more successful program created by someone else that gets 3x or more the viewership.

    Pretty soon the entire MSNBC dayside could be nothing but rotating groups of people sitting around a desk and pretending to be The Five. But it is the sincerest form of flattery.

  15. The Five was born on Meet The Press. Gimme a break.

  16. A show’s success does not solely depend on format. Content matters. Up is fundamentally different in tone and content than many other shows. It has greater in-depth focus with longer segments. I’m not knocking The Five, I’m just saying they are very different in many ways.

  17. I’m knocking The Five. They trade predictable talking points while Bob Beckel looks down Guilfoyle’s top. It’s ridiculous.

  18. They turned Bob Beckel into a star. How messed up is that?

  19. And it takes a whole lot less than 60 days when you’re just creating one show after another, all of them patterned after a far more successful program created by someone else that gets 3x or more the viewership.

    Hey Johnny, have you ever watched “Morning Joe” on MSNBC? As any regular viewer of that show knows, they have AT LEAST four people on (including the two main hosts) discussing issues of the day for three hours every morning in a roundtable format.

    So, using your logic of one show ripping off the other (which is trivial, at best), “The Five” ripped off “Morning Joe”, a show that has continued to improve and gain popularity in the last four years.

    Check and mate. Stop digging.

  20. “Oh yeah, it takes more than 60 days to put people around a table and have them talk. I think ‘The Five’ was put together in less than that time.”

    ^That’s the point Dollar. This format has been used for years. ‘The Five’ was tossed together as a quick replacement when Beck was fired and because you never know when one of the hosts will blow up live on air it has gotten pretty good ratings.

    The big difference is in the discussion topics which on ‘The Five’ rarely gets above the ‘Obama is the anti-chr*st – no maybe he’s not stage’.

  21. “Hey Johnny, have you ever watched “Morning Joe” on MSNBC?”

    Morning Joe has one permanent host–in fact the show is named after him. The Five doesn’t have a host, or has five depending on how you look at it. Morning Joe does the usual interviews with candidates and pundits. The Five doesn’t. Morning Joe regularly and consistently gets beaten in its time slot week after week. The Five doesn’t.

    “Check and mate. Stop digging.”

    I love it when people make an argument and then pretend like they are the impartial judge and say, “OK, discussion over; I now rule that I’ve won”. I realize that may be the only way they’ll ever get such a ruling, but it’s really kind of a hacky hack ploy used by hacks.

  22. “Morning Joe has one permanent host”

    ^Morning Joe has a variety of hosts as anyone who watches the show; even sporadically; knows.

    “Morning Joe regularly and consistently gets beaten in its time slot week after week. The Five doesn’t.”

    ^To quote Erin Burnett: “Seriously!” The ratings argument yet again!

    FNC wins every ratings race – in every time slot – all the time. It’s a given, for Gods sake, and when they don’t it will be a huge – stop the presses – cable news story.

    If that’s your argument for ‘The Five’ – then wow – you win! FNC could run a test pattern and still double the ratings of CNN and MSNBC. It says nothing about the shows relative merit; re another show on another network; especially in a different time-slot.

  23. “Who invented the roundtable discussion?”

    King Arthur? This is the dumbest conversation. Ever.

  24. I think the Algonquins were big into it, too, not that these bear any resemblance.😉

  25. […] announced that Melissa Harris-Perry’s new show will now debut on February 18th. It was originally scheduled to launch February 4th… “MELISSA HARRIS-PERRY” TO DEBUT ON MSNBC SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 18, […]

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