“Person To Person” last aired on CBS in 1961, two years after famed TV journalism pioneer Edward R. Murrow left the program, which he had begun in 1953, so most TV viewers today don’t even remember the show. But the Murrow legacy has not been forgotten at CBS News, which is reviving the iconic franchise.
The reworked and updated Person To Person will debut Wednesday, February 8th at 8:00 pm. It will be hosted by “CBS This Morning” co-host and CBS News Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent and “60 Minutes” Correspondent Lara Logan.
In addition to her duties as Executive Producer of “48 Hours Mystery” and Special Projects, Susan Zirinsky will serve as Executive Producer, as will Judy Tygard, Senior Producer of 48 Hours and Special Projects.
“We have dreamed about bringing a modern version of this great program, Person To Person, back to CBS for years – and now it is happening. It is an exciting new development for us, particularly because it will be led by two of our most accomplished producers and two of our best interviewers,” said CBS News Chairman and 60 Minutes Executive Producer Jeff Fager.
CBS News said the new Person To Person will retain many of the elements that made the original so captivating. Co-hosts Rose and Logan will bring viewers into the private homes of public people – musical artists, actors, directors, political leaders and newsmakers. The freedom and spontaneity of the format will allow guests to introduce friends and family members and show off items of personal or professional significance. Guests will effectively lead the discussion as the cameras capture unexpectedly vivid and touching revelations. Conversation will be the primary focus, distinguishing the series from more traditional interview programs and news magazines. Guests for the premiere broadcast and the schedule for other broadcasts will be announced at a later date.
The program made television history in 1953, when Murrow began taking viewers into the homes of people whose names continue to resonate today: John and Jacqueline Kennedy, Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, Harry Truman, Fidel Castro and John Steinbeck. Viewers saw Robert Kennedy soothing his young children, who had stayed awake long past their bedtimes especially for the broadcast; they also saw Marlon Brando playing bongos with a friend and Sammy Davis, Jr. polishing dance moves.
RBR-TVBR observation: Not mentioned in the CBS announcement is that Murrow hated doing the show, but it was the price he paid to draw an audience to CBS so the network would give him the budget and manpower he wanted for real news coverage. Nonetheless, he was a true pro and pioneered the genre of celebrity interview programs on US television.
In the clip below Murrow interviewed Liberace.