CNN dumps Eliot Spitzer


Eliot Spitzer’s ratings-challenged “In the Arena” has been cancelled by CNN. Instead, Anderson Cooper’s AC360 is moving to 8:00 pm, effective August 8th, with a daily re-airing in its current 10:00 pm slot.

CNN told staffers that it is looking for an “alternative role” for Spitzer, the former New York governor who ended up in television after being forced to resign from office in a prostitution scandal. His original pairing with Kathleen Parker for “Parker Spitzer” had a lack of chemistry, leading to Parker’s exit. Now Spitzer is leaving the air as well – at least as far as having a daily show.

In the fall, CNN said it will premiere a new general news program with Erin Burnett, which will air at 7:00 pm ET and re-air at 11:00 pm ET. “Piers Morgan Tonight” will continue to air at 9:00 pm and midnight ET.

Moving back an hour “John King USA will kick off the evening at 6:00 pm. The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer will continue as a two-hour daily program, airing in a new timeslot of 4-6 pm. CNN Newsroom will now air from 9am-4pm.

“The new line-up showcases anchors who are experienced reporters in covering stories that span the globe. We created a nightly schedule that brings together the best of CNN’s journalism on a wide range of topics from politics and the economy to global and world events, as well the best newsmaker and celebrity interviews. This line-up ensures viewers access to the best of what CNN has to offer whenever they tune in at night,” said Ken Jautz, executive vice president, CNN/U.S.

CNN Fall Schedule (All times Eastern):

6a-9am:  American Morning
9a-4pm:  CNN Newsroom
4pm:         Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer
6pm:         John King, USA
7pm:         Erin Burnett
8pm:         Anderson Cooper 360°
9pm:         Piers Morgan Tonight
10pm:      AC 360 re-air
11pm:       Erin Burnett re-air
12am:       Piers Morgan Tonight re-air

RBR-TVBR observation: Putting Spitzer on in primetime was a pretty strange idea. It had the potential right from the start of being a train wreck – and it delivered. Now CNN has some rebuilding to do.