CBS TV Distribution on Monday made it official — after two decades, Arsenio Hall is returning to late night talk TV.
CBS TV Distribution (aka CTD, and formerly Paramount Domestic TV) was the producer of Arsenio Hall’s old syndicated talk show. That program ran from 1989 to 1994 and on which, famously, then-presidential candidate Bill Clinton played “Heartbreak Hotel” on the sax — making it safe and hip for serious presidential contenders to make non-serious, image-honing appearances on talk shows in daytime, afternoon and late-night. Here’s how much times have changed: When asked Monday who would be his dream guest to end all dream guests, Hall told celebrity suck-up show “Entertainment Tonight”:”You can’t go wrong if you get Jay-Z, Beyonce and the baby."
Arsenio’s original talk show also made “Woof! Woof! Woof” an entry in the Top 10 Most Annoying Ever Pop Culture Shouts of Approval.
On the new show, CBS TV Distribution is partnered with Tribune Broadcasting — one of CBS’s partners in CW network. The new show is set to launch on 17 Tribune stations, including Washington’s WDCW.
Hall’s new show is already sold in all Top-10 markets — Washington being No. 8. Word that Hall and CTD were going to partner again for a new late-night talk show first surfaced about the time that Hall became a finalist on NBC’s latest “Celebrity Apprentice” edition.
CTD president John Nogawski noted in Monday’s announcement that Arsenio’s old show had a strong folowing among 18- to 34-year-olds who are now the late-night core audience of 35- to 54-years-olds.
“Years ago, he transcended time periods and attracted a cross-over audience while bringing a fresh perspective to late night,” Nogawski said. “That same need in the market exists today as when we originally launched.”