Newsmagazine set for PBS debut

January 08, 2002|By David Zurawik

Public television will launch a weekly newsmagazine Jan. 18 with Bill Moyers as host and National Public Radio correspondents featured among its contributors.

NOW With Bill Moyers will be produced by Moyers' Public Affairs Television production company and has a 50-week commitment, according to Pat Mitchell, president of PBS. The hourlong newsmagazine will air Fridays at 9 p.m. on most public television stations. The show's publicists describe NOW's format as a mixture of documentary reporting, one-on-one interviews and commentary.

"Americans are saturated with events in the headlines, but in this pounding news cycle, it is hard to grasp the bigger picture and the larger forces driving daily developments," Moyers said yesterday in a news release. "NOW will report on the reality behind and beyond news-making events. Our collaboration with NPR will be an enormous asset."

In the joint statement, NPR president Kevin Klose said, "We are excited about the opportunity to bring our resources and talent to the table to help broaden the definition of news on television."

PBS and NPR have joined together in several projects in the last year since Pat Mitchell took over as president of PBS, promising that she would try to find synergy between the two highest brand identities in public broadcasting.

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