July 14, 2024

Beck Uses Last Show on Fox to Allude to His New Venture

Mr. Beck, 47, who reached an agreement with Fox to leave half a year before his three-year contract expired, evidently was not permitted to mention GBTV by name, but he was allowed to mention his personal Web site, GlennBeck.com, so on his last broadcast on Thursday he repeatedly encouraged his viewers to go there to “find out where I’m going.” His personal Web site redirected visitors to GBTV.

Then, half an hour after the broadcast, Mr. Beck left Fox’s studio in Midtown Manhattan and headed to a theater nearby where he hosted a webcast on GBTV.com. The webcast was part of an effort by his production company, Mercury Radio Arts, to sign up paying customers for the site before the debut of his new daily show in September.

Speaking through the television set to the members of the media that he said were “celebrating” the end of his Fox show, Mr. Beck said, “You will pray for the time when I was only on the air for one hour every day.”

His forthcoming show on the Web will be two hours long.

Although Mr. Beck’s daily ratings have diminished somewhat this year, he remains a remarkably influential figure, making his departure from Fox after two and a half years all the more interesting. He and his staff repeatedly clashed with Fox executives, but during the last hour of the show that bore his name Mr. Beck thanked the Fox News chief, Roger Ailes, and the News Corporation chief, Rupert Murdoch, “and everybody at this network for their trust.”

In spite of his sometimes rocky relationship with Fox News, Mr. Beck’s ratings success will be difficult to repeat. He often attracted more than two million viewers to the 5 p.m. time slot, a rating that no cable news channel had ever seen regularly at that hour before. He was less successful with advertisers. For two years an advertising boycott has been waged against Mr. Beck, and it has had a visible effect on the 5 p.m. hour, as several hundred advertisers have chosen not to place ads on the show.

About two hours before Mr. Beck’s finale, Fox News announced the temporary replacement for him, “The Five,” a talk show with a rotating panel of opinionated people.

A Fox news release said “The Five” would feature a “roundtable ensemble of five rotating Fox personalities who will discuss, debate and at times debunk the hot news stories, controversies and issues of the day.”

Among the people involved in “The Five” are Greg Gutfeld, who is host of an overnight talk show for Fox; Juan Williams, a Democratic analyst who is a regular on Fox’s “The O’Reilly Factor”; Dana Perino, a former spokeswoman for the Bush White House; and Andrew Napolitano, the host of a libertarian talk show on the Fox Business Network. For the week of July 3, Fox will repeat some of Mr. Beck’s shows.

“The Five” will start on July 11. Fox indicated that it would be shown only this summer, prompting speculation that the channel will devote the hour to one person in the fall.

By then, Mr. Beck will be hosting his new show on GBTV.com at 5 p.m., making him a competitor. But he did not bring that up Thursday. Clutching a microphone that he had on his set at Fox and at HLN, the channel where he worked before, Mr. Beck said, “From New York, good night America,” and left the studio.

Article source: http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=cccc77a66099973553e3077d148d3ee8

Speak Your Mind