One day after Nick Cannon announced he was taking a “pause” from his daily radio program based at KPWR-FM “Power 106” in Los Angeles, the station’s owner offered comment on a situation that has suddenly squelched the long, successful career of an African American entertainer who in January was the buzz of NATPE Miami.
That’s because the Nick Cannon show, a Debmar-Mercury offering, had become the darling of the conference, along with a Drew Barrymore entry to daytime TV. By early April, 90% national clearance had been seen for the show, with a Sept. 21, 2020 debut date inked.
You can scratch that.
While Cannon’s role as host of FOX’s The Masked Singer hasn’t been impacted, Lionsgate and Debmar-Mercury on Friday made it clear that moving forward this autumn with Nick Cannon is not a wise move, given the furor surrounding his commentary with Professor Griff that referenced Jewish stereotypes regarding finance and power.
“The ‘Nick Cannon’ talk show will not debut this year,” Debmar-Mercury, the producer and distributor of the show, said. “After conversations with Nick, we do believe that his public comments don’t reflect his true feelings and his apology is heartfelt and sincere. We want to continue the healing process as he meets with leaders of the Jewish community and engages in a dialogue with our distribution partners to hear their views. We are standing by Nick in our hope that by fall 2021 he will be able to use his extraordinary talent and platform to entertain, enlighten and unite his audience on the ‘Nick Cannon’ talk show.”
With the COVID-19 pandemic putting a cloud on production of new shows for the upcoming season, a 12-month delay may not be the worst decision for Debmar-Mercury. However, filling the time slot will now leave stations that have signed up for the program quickly looking for a replacement.
Meanwhile, Power 106 owner Meruelo Media late Thursday released a statement addressing its morning host, emphasizing that the hurtful comments were not uttered on its station or any affiliated audio source.
“Last night Nick Cannon apologized for the pain he caused on a recent podcast interview,” the company said, referring to comments from Cannon made Wednesday. “While the remarks were not part of our radio content, nor lived on any of the platforms associated with Meruelo Media, as a minority-owned media company, we take these matters very seriously.”
The company, like Debmar-Mercury, noted that it condemns all expressions of hate, racism, bigotry and anti-Semitism and reiterated Cannon’s decision “to take some time off to reflect and create an action plan.”
It is a decision Meruelo Media supports.
FROM THE RBR+TVBR ARCHIVES: