Now Here's the News

Kris Ostrowski, replaced as news director at Channel 7 in mid-October, has been named assistant news director at NBC-owned Channel 4, reporting to news director Jim Van Messel . . .

The move was not unexpected. Ostrowski received good marks from NBC as news director at the network-owned WKYC in Cleveland, where she worked for three years prior to joining WJLA in September 1984 . . .

On Oct. 16, Ostrowski resigned from WJLA after station management notified her that Tom Doerr, who had been news director at KTUL in Tulsa, another Allbritton Communications Co. station, was being brought in as executive news director. She was told she could remain as news director but declined . . .

Ostrowski, who starts at WRC on Nov. 18, has also worked in the Atlanta, Rochester, N.Y., and Green Bay, Wis., markets . . .

"North and South" on ABC is beginning to look like a winner for the network. The Wednesday telecast earned a 25.4 Nielsen rating and a 39 percent audience share in Nielsen's 12-market overnights, the mini-series' best overnight performance yet . . .

Wednesday's figures include another strong performance in Washington, where Channel 7 averaged a 29.2/45, finishing second behind Detroit among the 12 major markets surveyed . . .

National Nielsens for the Tuesday edition of "North and South" show a 23.6/34, down from the 25.8/37 earned by the Sunday premiere, however . . .

Incidentally, the success of "North and South" is giving the 11 p.m. news on Seven a big boost. Wednesday night, Seven's late news averaged a 19 rating and a 43 percent share on the Nielsen meters, compared with a 10.6/23 for Nine and a 10.3/23 for Four . . .

In fact, the late news lead-in situation this week for the CBS affiliate is just gloomy enough that Nine has elected to notify Nielsen that its Tuesday and Wednesday late news were, respectively, election and flood "specials" so they won't be averaged in when the November ratings for 11 p.m. news shows are totaled . . . a tactic not unfamiliar to Nine's competitors, incidentally . . .

And from our Whew! That's a Relief file: Joan Collins, the 52-year-old star of ABC's "Dynasty," married her beau of two years, Peter Holm, in a Las Vegas wedding chapel Wednesday night . . .

Swedish businessman Holm, 38, is Collins' fourth husband. He gave her a half-inch "solid diamond" wedding ring, according to Joan's publicity agent . . .

The happy couple flew to Las Vegas from Los Angeles Wednesday night for the ceremony and then flew right back to Los Angeles . . .

The couple plans a private black-tie dinner party for close friends tonight. Collins' previous marriages were to film producer Ron Klass and British actors Maxwell Reed and Anthony Newley. All three marriages ended in divorce . . .

Collins and Holm formed a joint company to produce Collins' latest television mini-series, "Sins" . . . ? Also in the News

Executive producer Pam Hill says her ABC News "Closeup" documentary unit will "lose some people" in another round of job cuts at the News division late this year but the loss "will not materially alter our ability to produce the same amount of hours next year" . . .

Hill says the unit now numbers "somewhere between 28 and 35" people although, because of the free-lancer roster, she isn't sure what the exact count is. The unit will produce six hours of documentaries next year, the same as in 1985, with "an option for two more hours," according to Hill . . .

Hill said "it's premature to talk about numbers. Some of the people could turn up elsewhere in the News division" . . .

ABC News, which cut 35 earlier this fall, is expected to drop another 10 employes overall before the end of the year . . .

ABC's "Good Morning America," celebrating its 10th anniversary this week, slipped to second place in the latest Nielsen ratings behind NBC's "Today" show . . .

For the week ending Nov. 1, "Today" had a 5.3 rating and a 23 percent audience share, compared with "GMA's" 5.0/22 and "CBS Morning News" 3.4/15 . . .

Steve Friedman, executive producer of the NBC program, yesterday said the win was "our anniversary present to 'GMA' " . . .

The 5.3 for "Today" was its highest rating since mid-May . . .

Channel 56, the public TV station in Northern Virginia, will hold a "Pledge Week Celebration" from Wednesday, Nov. 13, through Tuesday, Nov. 19 . . .

The usual blend of special programming, ranging from a Rosemary Clooney concert to Odyssey music video specials, American and foreign films and football games, will air during the fund-raising week . . .

Channel 7 has named Coby Leyden director of on-air promotion; Teri Everett director of press relations; and Bob Helsley design manager . . .

They will report to Mike Tanner, director of marketing for the station . . .

Leyden comes from KOMO in Seattle, where he wrote and produced on-air advertising for the ABC affiliate. Everett, a former account executive at Ogilvy & Mather in Washington, previously served on the staff of Sen. Bob Packwood (R-Ore.). Helsley comes from WMAR in Baltimore, where he spent 12 years as art director . . .

Gunga Dan better get into his fur coat, mittens and earmuffs for this assignment. "CBS Evening News With Dan Rather" plans to broadcast from the roof of the Metropole Hotel in chilly Geneva during Summit Week, starting Monday, Nov. 18, through Thursday, Nov. 21 . . .

"Face the Nation," however, will do its Sunday, Nov. 17, broadcast from inside the Metropole Hotel in Geneva . . .

When the week started, CBS Sports planned to air Sunday's game between the L.A. Rams and the New York Giants for about 40 percent of the network's TV homes, with only 11 percent coverage of the Chicago Bears-Detroit Lions game . . .

But the Bears, Refrigerator and all, are so hot, affiliates suddenly started clamoring to air the Bears. CBS Sports has since changed its coverage plans four times. Now the Bears will be available to 49.8 percent of the national market and the Rams will have 26.3 percent coverage (the second game Sunday will be the Skins and Cowboys, who get 100 percent distribution) . . .

Incidentally, former Skins coach George Allen will debate John Madden on "NFL Today" Sunday over Madden's contention that the trend in the NFL is toward bigger offensive linemen . . .

After nine weeks of the season, CBS' NFL audiences are up 8 percent over last year; NBC is up 13 percent; and ABC's Monday night schedule is up 17 percent (including its three week-night "specials," ABC NFL audiences are up 19 percent overall) . . .

Incidentally, NBC Sports' "Breeders Cup" afternoon last Saturday averaged only a 4.0 rating, down from a 5.1 in 1984 . . .