Now Here's the News

But first: a study in the May issue of the journal Pediatrics says that heavy doses of TV can make children fat, and youngsters who are addicted to the tube early in life often grow to be overweight teen-agers . . .

The research found that among adolescents, the incidence of obesity increased by 2 percent for each additional hour they average in front of the set every day . . .

"I'm not saying that television viewing causes all childhood obesity; it doesn't," said Dr. William H. Dietz Jr., who runs an obesity clinic at New England Medical Center and prepared the study with Dr. Steven L. Gortmaker of Harvard U. "But clearly there is a group of children and teen-agers in whom it is a very important factor in the genesis of obesity" . . .

Early word at NBC News is that when Roger Mudd's magazine show embarks on its once-a-month prime-time shakedown cruise in August, it will be aired monthly in the 8 p.m. Monday time slot . . .

NBC News president Larry Grossman has from the first fancied that high-viewership time slot in which to showcase his division's new one-hour magazine . . . rather than one of those 10 p.m. Friday or Saturday night slots when baby sitters (or the babies themselves) do the voting . . .

The more favorable Monday tryout spot can be viewed as another concession made last week by NBC management in view of the decision by Grossman and NBC Chairman Grant Tinker that it would be best to delay the debut of the new magazine as a weekly entry until it was ready to go . . .

Network entertainment programmers and not a few affiliates were delighted by the decision to keep the news show off what could be a very successful fall schedule unless it were in tip-top shape . . .

"TV's Bloopers and Practical Jokes" will be preempted once a month to make room for the still-untitled magazine . . .

ABC Entertainment, meanwhile, is talking to Embassy Television about the possibility of picking up "Diff'rent Strokes," which NBC announced last week was being dropped after a seven-year run on the network . . .

Earlier this spring, series star Gary Coleman had told NBC he wasn't interested in returning and then at the last minute changed his mind. By then, NBC Entertainment President Brandon Tartikoff, having watched the series slide to a 14.7 rating and a 25 percent audience share in the 1984-85 season, had decided it had run its course . . .

If ABC does pick it up, it will be only after executives have convinced themselves that it still does well with younger viewers, the lack of which was one of the factors in that network's audience slide this past year . . .

"Strokes" finished 35th in the overall rankings last year (as ratings for all networks slipped), up from 50th- and 51st-place rankings (and ratings of 15.1/26 and 15.3/26) the previous two seasons . . .

Meanwhile, ABC Entertainment today is due to announce its 1985-86 prime-time schedule to its affiliates board and advertising agencies in New York. As late as Saturday network executives were still busy in Manhattan fine-tuning the lineup . . . The network's 212 affiliates meet there for two days, starting tomorrow . . .

"Entertainment Tonight" on Friday reported that "T.J. Hooker" and "Finder of Lost Loves" would be missing from next fall's Saturday night schedule on ABC . . . but the network itself has been playing schedule possibilities very close to the vest, epecially after a leak last week about NBC's fall schedule took all the air out of that network's announcement to its affiliates and the financial community (we understand NBC has narrowed the "leak" list to about 20 possibles) . . . Moving Right Along

This morning in the 8-to-8:30 a.m. time period, "CBS Morning News" will air the first of three segments taken from yesterday's two-hour trip down Memory Lane taped in London by CBSers who covered World War II for the CBS radio network or other news organizations . . .

Dan Rather moderated the memoirs, which were held at the Cafe Royal in the Hotel Royal, which had been Charles Collingwood's favorite hangout during his wartime stint in London . . .

Especially "eloquent," according to staffers, were Winston Burdette and Collingwood. Others at the session were Eric Sevareid, Richard C. Hottelet, Douglas Edwards and William Shirer from the Ed Murrow Gang and Walter Cronkite, Andy Rooney and Ernie Leiser, who covered WWII for others . . .

Other reunion excerpts will air tomorrow and Wednesday mornings . . .

Also on "CBS Morning News" today, during the 7:30-to-8 a.m. segment, Rooney (who worked on Stars & Stripes) will read a six-minute "letter to his grandson," recalling the significance of World War II to his generation . . .

The grandson is 5-year-old Justin Fischel of Chevy Chase, Md., incidentally . . .

Word on all the recollections from London, according to a "Morning News" executive: "very moving" . . .

First reaction out at Channel 5 was positive to the proposed sale of six Metromedia TV stations -- including WTTG -- to a group composed of 20th Century-Fox Film Corp., Denver oilman Marvin Davis and Australian publisher and broadcaster Rupert Murdoch . . .

The broadcast group has been notoriously short of competitive prime-time entertainment programming and although nobody on Friday could guess all the ramifications of the deal at this point in time, the hope was that 20th Century-Fox just might provide some first-run programming to enhance the station's schedule, which otherwise is very competitive in this market . . .

In fact, one WTTG executive answered the phone Friday with a cheerful "Foxy Media here" . . .

The announcement of the $1.5 billion deal was the talk of a farewell party held Friday at the station for vice president and general manager Kevin O'Brien, who has just been promoted to run WNEW, the Metromedia station in New York . . .

Early indications were that the new owners would leave station operations intact . . . The next question is whether FCC cross-ownership rules would force the new ownership down the line to sell stations in New York and Chicago, where Murdoch controls newspapers . . .

During the week of May 13, the "Today" show will feature the daughters of three presidents, each conducting a tour of the libraries housing their fathers' presidential papers . . .

On the 13th, Caroline Kennedy, making a very rare TV appearance, will take Jane Pauley through the John F. Kennedy Library in Cambridge, Mass.; on the 14th, Susan Ford will tour the Gerald Ford library in Grand Rapids, Mich.; and the next day Margaret Truman will visit the Harry S Truman library in Independence, Mo. . . . Happy Trails for PBS

The Public Broadcasting Service, whose headquarters were burned out last October in that fire at the U.S. Postal Service building in L'Enfant Plaza, has found a new permanent home in Alexandria . . .

PBS this weekend signed a 10-year lease, plus two five-year renewal options, for 95,000 square feet of office space in the Braddock Place development now under construction. PBS expects to occupy the new headquarters by January . . .

Some 140 of its 200-plus staff returned last month to 76,000 square feet of refurbished office space at the L'Enfant Plaza address. But the technical staff, whose basement facilities were wrecked in the fire, has remained at the Stevenson Way site in Alexandria where satellite equipment is located . . .