Erin Burnett Profile…
Capital New York’s Alex Weprin profiles Erin Burnett in a piece which also buries a bombshell that will no doubt surprise many given her show’s performance; CNN just re-signed her to a new multi-year deal…
And yet, the channel still needs an element of stability, an anchor that can speak the daytime language of hard news as well as the more feature-driven product that is beginning to show up after 8 p.m.
Burnett’s “Outfront” is a lynchpin in CNN’s plan.
The anchor just signed a new, multi-year contract earlier this summer, a deal that will keep her “Outfront” at 7 p.m. for the foreseeable future. She’ll also be getting her own show on CNN International later this year, comprised of segments from “Outfront,” mixed with exclusive and extended interview segments, among other content.
“Outfront” finds itself in a time slot that is tough—not just because of the strong competition (Greta Van Susteren on Fox News and Chris Matthews on MSNBC are still reliable ratings draws, and have a combined 40+ years of experience anchoring TV shows)—but also because it is something of a dividing line between dayside programming, which is still very news-centric, and primetime, which has more analysis, interviews and entertainment-style fare.
Burnett said that it has taken some time for her show to develop a formula that strikes the right balance of news, interviews and features that viewers expect from cable news.
“Over the past few years I think our show and the network have wondered which of those it is, and there has been some testing,” she said.
I will say just this. If Jeff Zucker wasn’t running CNN…Burnett probably doesn’t get that extension.