News Briefs: Current TV Fires Keith Olbermann

By Tim Surette

Mar 31, 2012

FOREVER UNEMPLOYABLE NEWS

... Current TV has fired lead anchor Keith Olbermann, because everyone fires Keith Olbermann. The network, started by Al Gore, claims Olbermann strayed from their core values of being an "authentic progressive outlet" and its ideals of "respect, openness, collegiality, and loyalty to our viewers." Olbermann took to Twitter to say he's suing. Eliot Spitzer will take over Olbermann's old time slot. Old white guys fighting! The Liberal edition! [NY Times]


SAVE FIVE BUCKS BUT STILL SPEND FIVE BUCKS PLEASE NEWS

... Remember Louis CK's cool ass experiment to produce a comedy show completely on his own and sell it by himself on the Internet for $5? Well it worked and it was great. However, if you were too cheap to buy it because you are Cheapy von Cheaperson, you can see it soon because FX has announced it will air it at some point. But you should still pay the five bucks for it because this is the future of entertainment and studios and networks are just talentless middlemen. Fact. [Observer]


DEVELOPMENTS IN DEVELOPMENT NEWS

... The Food Network has ok'd a few new shows. There are too many to list here but I have to mention Mystery Diners, which follows undercover participants who go into restaurants when the owner isn't around to find out what really goes on. Spoiler, lots of sex and cocaine! See the full list of shows in the link, but they're all terribly similar to everything else in culinary television. [Eater]

... MTV has renewed The Challenge and The Real World because it's hella-cheap to film a bunch of young people being young people. [Deadline Hollywood]

... Animal Planet has renewed Pit Boss, Pit Bulls and Parolees, and My Cat From Hell. Have you seen that guy from My Cat From Hell? He carries cat toys in a guitar case and has the oddest shaped head. [Chicago Tribune]

... TLC is going with Craft Wars, a reality competition show that pits "crafters" against each other. And for some weird reason it will be hosted by Tori Spelling, who probably thought it was Kraft Wars and she'd get to eat free Mac & Cheese all day. [TLC via press release]

... MTV2 is launching a hip-hop version of Hollywood Squares. I'm being serious. [EW]


CASTING NEWS

... Rachael Harris (The Hangover) will guest star in an episode of Suits. She'll play a rep from Harvard Law School that wants to stop Pearson Hardman from recruiting from the school. Look for her in Episode 3 of Season 2. [THR]

... The CW's pilot Shelter has found its male lead. The J.J. Abrams-produced drama, about employees of a New England resort, will welcome Zachary Abel (Make It Or Break It) as the studly concierge. [Deadline Hollywood]


Follow TV.com writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom

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  • jekyll Apr 02, 2012

    Wouldn't mind having Olbermann back on Football Night in America

  • hockeyrick Apr 01, 2012

    Lets see, Spitzer for keith, guess it pays to be caught in compromising positions and still coming out smelling like a rose!

    Amazing how there degenerates bounce back and now are the creme of the crop!!!!

  • BarryDalton Apr 01, 2012

    Rush Limbaugh, for example

  • brain05 Apr 01, 2012

    So let me get this straight. Current TV fired Olbermann because he strayed from their ideals of "respect, openness, collegiality, and loyalty to our viewers"", and then they hired Elliot Spitzer to replace him. I need a minute to try to wrap my brain around that one.

  • AmericanInfidel Apr 01, 2012

    From Bathtub boy to Client #9.

  • Silver_Sword_14 Apr 01, 2012

    J.J. Abrams quote: "I'm an impatient guy and tend not to like to stay with one thing for a long time. I'll never be able to write as many scripts as I did for 'Felicity' or 'Alias' ever again. I'm just too impatient these days. I want to get on to the next project." -- Somebody get this man some Ritalin. He's lost his touch.



    Not sure why, but I'm kind of interested in seeing Hip Hop Squares. Such an awful title, though.

  • adamonfire Apr 01, 2012

    Aziz Ansari came out with a $5 special too, I watched it last night. It's decent, but I'm definitely hoping for better material on his upcoming tour since I dropped $40 to see it. Every person that spends that much to see a comedian should get a voucher for these specials with the ticket.

  • BarryDalton Mar 31, 2012

    Like him or hate him, Olbermann put Current TV on the map (albeit a tiny island nearly invisible to the naked eye.)



    I was a huge fan of his show on MSNBC, but not so much the Current version. (Actually, I began to dislike his MSNBC show, too, when he started sitting in a big leather chair and narrating stories by some ancient author his father loved (rip)).



    I never miss an episode of Rachel Maddow because she offers her show free via iTunes, which is smart when you have a topical show. Nobody is going to buy a news show online. And you can still hawk ads on a podcast so I don't get why more shows don't do it. Don't know why Current doesn't do that. It's a no brainer.



    As for Keith, it's ironic that someone like him...whose job is to question authority...needs an authority figure to keep him in line. Business is business. If you regularly undermine your bosses, no matter how stupid and lame they may be, you have to go.



    I look forward to seeing what he does next. Olbermann is an honest guy on-air but apparently his a real tool the rest of the time.

  • Acrobit Mar 31, 2012

    Heh, had they not met Olbermann before they hired him? It's hard to take Current TV seriously as a news channel when they know less than their audience. Uygur's great, though. I wish he'd get back on real TV so I can watch him again.

  • WavSlave Mar 31, 2012

    Wow, another new series with the J. J. Abrams rubber stamp on it. His name being attached to a TV project is increasingly becoming the mark of something to avoid.

  • StanChaz Mar 31, 2012

    Did Current TV simply use Keith to gain attention and higher ratings? They KNEW what they were getting! Keith injects emotion into his commentary, his intelligent and incisive reporting, his humor, and his relationships....all of which makes his program so interesting. You FEEL his pain, you FEEL his anger, and you FEEL his heart-felt sincerity when he covers a story. He's never just a talking head! If Keith is absent from Current TV, then I too will be absent from Current TV. Keith is unique- one of the best- hands down; as shown by is coverage of OWS, which was outstanding. I wish him well and hope he is back on the air soon.

  • JT_Kirk Mar 31, 2012

    Olbermann is a great commentator and can a decent news man, it's just too bad that he can't keep professional separation between those two halves. Fired again, oh well.



    Rachel Harris needs to get a show just so she stop bouncing around from guest spot to guest spot. She used to be on the daily show, for Christ's sake!

  • WavSlave Mar 31, 2012

    Agreed on Rachel. It's time for her to shine on her own as I know she can do if given the chance.

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