Rupert the Kingmaker: An ANZAC Day Reflection on the ‘Aussie Prince’

Rupert Murdoch was stepping into his father’s shoes when he was the first outsider to greet Donald Trump after the shock 2016 election result.  Rupert’s father Keith was the Australian kingmaker who taught the young Rupert how to leverage media ownership into political power. The son differs from the father by promoting racial and class …


LE JAPON VU DU CIEL au MIPDoc. Étude du d’une co-production 4K couronnée de succès.

Une co-production à 1,5 million d’Euros entre la NHK, le diffuseur publique japonais et le français Gédéon Programmes a été un grand succès au MIPDoc 2018. La série : LE JAPON VU DU CIEL. Les producteurs exécutifs Shin Yasuda et Nicolas Deschamps ont partagé leur processus de co-production lors de mon panel juste après l’avant-première mondiale. …

MLK: The Assassination Tapes: Winning Awards by Overcoming the Challenges of Working with the Archive

To mark today’s 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s assassination, I have republished our coverage of the Peabody Award-winning documentary “MLK: The Assassination Tapes.”  Originally published July 1, 2013. David Royle, EVP Programming & Production, Smithsonian Networks, and Tom Jennings, Executive Producer & Founder, 1895 Films explored the development and commissioning of their multiple-award-winning documentary at MIPDoc 2013. …

Ken Burns’ ‘The Vietnam War’ Triples PBS’s Primetime Average

‘The Vietnam War’ from Ken Burns & Lynn Novick earned a hit-level PBS audience. This post on the 18-hour, $30 million ‘Vietnam’ series wraps up my coverage of PBS’s impressive factual ratings. (Read below my personal take on ‘Vietnam’ that is based on my eyewitness experience in wartime Laos as a 22 year old researcher / reporter …

PBS History Programming: Audience & Pipeline. Top 5

This post continues my coverage of the PBS audience for History and Science for delegates attending WCSFP Congress in San Francisco. The focus here is on the strands American Experience, American Masters and Secrets of the Dead. Also profiled are the highest-rated PBS History specials and limited series outside the strands. Next post: The Vietnam War. …

PBS Science Audience: Top 5 Non-NOVA Series & Specials, 2015-17

PBS commissions Science specials and series in addition to the NOVA pipeline. Top 5 Non-NOVA Science: Update “Farthest – Voyager In Space” is a standalone special produced by HHMI Tangled Bank Studios for PBS, and not a Secrets Of The Dead episode. Context: PBS’s average primetime rating is 1.41. That translates as an audience of 2,116,000 …

NOVA Tops 4.5 Million Viewers: Trends, Filters, and Recent Greenlights

NOVA is PBS’s signature Science strand. It is presented by WGBH Boston and carried on almost all of PBS’s 350+ stations. Viewers: Despite generally shrinking audiences for broadcasters, NOVA’s 3-Season rating trend is positive: 1.95 HH (2014-15) 1.89 HH (2015-16) 1.99 HH (2016-17). The Median Age of NOVA viewers is 63. This year’s quick turnaround …