By:
April 11, 2019

Good morning. A familiar face is returning to television, a look back at George magazine, sad news for a historic publishing company and Oprah joining forces with a prince. Plus, Jane Pauley’s next project is caught up in a traffic jam.

Celebrating the man behind the award

Joseph Pulitzer

Next week, we celebrate the best in journalism with the Pulitzer Prizes. Before then, PBS will look at the life of the man behind the name: Joseph Pulitzer. Most PBS stations (check your local listings) will air “Joseph Pulitzer: Voice of the People” Friday night at 9 p.m. ET on “American Masters.”

Oren Rudavsky’s film looks at the once penniless Jewish immigrant from Hungary who eventually became a leading voice in the fight for freedom of the press. Actor Adam Driver is narrator with actor Liev Schreiber as the voice of Pulitzer. Additional voices are provided by actors Tim Blake Nelson, Rachel Brosnahan, Lauren Ambrose, Hugh Dancy and Billy Magnussen.

Lara Logan back on TV

Lara Logan in 2013. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)

Former CBS News foreign correspondent Lara Logan is returning to TV, at least for a little while. She will join Sinclair Broadcasting Group as a temporary special correspondent covering the U.S.-Mexico border.

Logan had spent 16 years at CBS before leaving in 2018. She won several awards, including Emmys, for her work on “60 Minutes” and the “CBS Evening News,” but her career at CBS also was stained by a “60 Minutes” story about the terrorist attacks in Benghazi, Libya that was based on an eyewitness account that turned out to be fabricated.

A little more than a month ago, the word was Logan was being approached by conservative networks after she bashed the “liberal” media. Fox News’ Sean Hannity even pitched his bosses on the air to hire Logan.

She now joins Sinclair, which owns 191 television stations. In a statement, Sinclair said Logan will produce two news segments per week for three months. No word on what will happen after three months, although Sinclair seems interested in her staying on.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Scott Livingston, Sinclair vice president of news, said Sinclair has been talking to Logan off and on for “probably more than a year.” He said the company was thrilled to land Logan.

“She’s smart, dynamic, resilient and tough as nails,” he said.

Logan told THR that she expects no interference from Sinclair on what to report even though Sinclair is considered to lean right politically.

“The mandate is to just go down there and come back with great stories,” Logan, 48, said. “That’s it. … I never expected that at this point in my career, after all these years, I would have that kind of freedom.”

Remembering JFK Jr. and George

The cover of the first George magazine, featuring Cindy Crawford as George Washington. (Courtesy)

This July will be the 20th anniversary of the death of John Kennedy Jr. So Lisa DePaulo talks to Cindy Crawford, Robert DeNiro, Newt Gingrich, Ann Coulter and others in an oral history of Kennedy’s George magazine for The Hollywood Reporter. DePaulo was friends with Kennedy and wrote for George, which published from 1995 to 2001, less than two years after Kennedy, his wife and sister-in-law died in a plane crash.

Crawford was one of the world’s best-known supermodels at the time and was chosen to appear on the first cover of George — dressed up as George Washington.

“I was like, ‘Oh, OK, that’s interesting,” Crawford said in the piece. “At one point we decided to cut off the shirt, and it was like ‘Yes! We’re doing George Washington, but it’s with a wink, you know?’ — with my midriff showing. … Sometimes I’ll see a special on John, and they’ll show when he revealed the cover, and I think, ‘OK, that was pretty cool that he chose me as his first cover.’”

Royal/pains

Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, watch a performance during their visit to Macarthur Girls High School in Sydney, Australia, in 2018. (Phil Noble/Pool Photo via AP)

May 17 will be a big night for CBS News with a couple of primetime specials featuring two of its biggest talents.

First, at 8 p.m Eastern time, “CBS This Morning” co-host Gayle King will anchor “Meghan and Harry Plus One,” a one-hour special marking the one-year anniversary of the marriage of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry.

Viewers love everything royal, but it’s another special at 9 p.m. that seems especially interesting. Jane Pauley will anchor “No Exit,” a one-hour look at traffic. Yes, traffic. Sounds like an odd topic, but just think about how much traffic impacts our lives, particularly those with difficult work commutes. The “CBS Sunday Morning” correspondents will look at such topics as past, present and future modes of transportation, the most scenic commutes, the craziest commutes and … flying cars! Also, a reveal of which countries have the worst traffic jams.

More from Prince Harry

Prince Harry is teaming up with Oprah Winfrey for a multi-part documentary series that will focus on mental illness and mental wellness. The series will air on Apple TV in 2020.

National Enquirer for sale?

A recent cover of the National Enquirer. (Courtesy)

The Washington Post reported Wednesday night that American Media Inc. is actively seeking to sell off the National Enquirer. The Post reports that the decision to sell came after the hedge fund manager whose firm controls AMI became “disgusted” with the Enquirer’s reporting tactics.

The Enquirer has been involved in a public feud with Post owner Jeff Bezos, who is expected to be meet with federal prosecutors regarding allegations that the tabloid tried to extort him over an affair he was having. One person told the Post that AMI wanted to unload the Enquirer “because they didn’t want to deal with hassles like this anymore.”

Historic publishing company files for bankruptcy

Johnson Publishing Company, the company once responsible for Ebony and Jet magazines, has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. It sold the iconic magazines geared toward an African American audience in 2016, so this move does not affect those publications.

Since selling those publications, the Chicago-based company has concentrated on its cosmetics business, Fashion Fair.

In a statement, the company said, “This decision was not easy, nor should it have been. Johnson Publishing Company is an iconic part of American and African American history since our founding in 1942, and the company’s impact on society cannot be overstated.”

Ebony, a print and online product, and Jet, an online-only publication, are owned by Clear View Group, a Texas-based equity firm.

Check it out

A college student asked Tampa Bay Times Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Lane DeGregory whether journalism was still a worthwhile career. So DeGregory made her most recent “WriteLane” podcast about five reasons to go into journalism.

Now that it is no longer owned by Univision, Clickhole took the opportunity to make fun of Univision’s logo. (Warning: R-rated language.)

Is it a Burger King? Well, yes. Sort of. Elizabeth Atkinson explains for Eater.

Have feedback or a tip? Email Poynter senior media writer Tom Jones at tjones@poynter.org.

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Tom Jones is Poynter’s senior media writer for Poynter.org. He was previously part of the Tampa Bay Times family during three stints over some 30…
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