Bernie Smilovitz, a Channel 5 sportscaster for the past six years, has signed with WDIV in Detroit . . .
He expects to join the Post-Newsweek station late next month to take over duties on the 5 and 11 weeknight news. He'll also join Detroit Tiger greats Al Kaline and George Kell as a member of the WDIV pregame show team for some 50 Tiger baseball telecasts . . .
Smilovitz had also been considering an offer from WMAQ, the NBC-owned station in Chicago . . .
Smilovitz, 33, said yesterday he was "torn" by the decision to leave his home town and WTTG, but pointed out that "joining Post-Newsweek is like going home. I broke in with WTOP radio and WTOP-TV. They gave me my shot . . .
"There's nothing about this town I won't miss. I'll miss the Redskins. But it's a fantastic offer you couldn't refuse. Detroit is one of the great sports towns in the country" . . .
Smilovitz informed WTTG management of his decision late Friday. No word yet on who will replace him on the 10 o'clock news or whether his Sunday night "Sports Extra" will continue after he leaves in a couple of weeks . . .
CBS announced Friday it has scheduled a 13-week run of "West 57th," its latest magazine project, in the 8 p.m. Wednesday time slot starting April 30 . . .
A week ago, the network had said it would debut the week of April 21 but discovered that two short-run series -- "Tough Cookies" and "Fast Times" -- which will occupy that time slot for a while starting in March -- had one more week to run than schedulers had first noticed . . .
So "West 57th" will debut the night the May ratings sweeps begin . . .
If current schedules hold up, "West 57th" will be up against NBC's strong "Highway to Heaven," which appeals to the older folks, and ABC's "MacGyver," which titillates the teenies . . . an audience split that CBS programmers probably want to exploit with an attraction for the young adult . . .
Coup du jour: As the Philippine government crisis grew Sunday, NBC's "Meet the Press" managed to get beleaguered President Ferdinand Marcos live via satellite yesterday for 20 minutes, starting at 10:30 a.m. . . . enabling the 11 a.m. version of "MTP" (seen here and in New York) to have an up-to-the-last-minute taped interview . . .
Although all three Sunday public affairs shows featured other principals -- American and Filipino -- in the big story, neither ABC's "This Week With David Brinkley" nor CBS' "Face the Nation" got Marcos ("Face the Nation" scrapped a Ted Kennedy interview in favor of the breaking story from the Pacific) . . .
NBC News is toying with the idea of summertime reruns -- in prime time -- of "Main Street," the monthly afternoon hour aimed at young teen-agers . . .
The series, hosted by Bryant Gumbel, has two more outings, including a March edition on the subject of teen-age sex and an April show on drug use . . .
Said one NBC News executive Friday: "The show's almost too good for that afternoon audience and ought to be seen in primetime" . . .
The reruns would include a mix of features from the eight monthly broadcasts, which began last September, updated where necessary . . .
Also in the News
That BBC documentary on "The Last Days of Marilyn Monroe" had a 15.1 Nielsen rating and a 22 percent audience share Wednesday night on Channel 5 . . .
It finished second between 8:30 and 10 that night behind the last half of "MacGyver" and "Dynasty" on Channel 7, which averaged an 18.8/28 . . . Both the NBC and CBS lineups on WRC and WDVM averaged an 11.2/17 over the same time period . . .
The station said it had received no complaints about the controversial broadcast -- which suggested Monroe relationships with both John and Robert Kennedy -- insisting instead that the calls they got "were positive" . . .
"ABC World News Tonight" anchor Peter Jennings was suffering from a terrible case of the flu Friday night as he prepared to fly to Moscow for a week of broadcasting during the Communist Party Congress . . .
Ted Koppel sat in for him on "World News" Thursday and Friday . . .
CBS Entertainment has scheduled "Dallas: The Early Years" for Sunday, March 23 . . .
The three-hour story of how the Ewing and Barnes families took to their feudin' ways is set between the 1930s and 1950s . . .
Larry Hagman will introduce the special, filmed on location in Texas. David Grant will play the young Digger (played in the "Dallas" series by David Wayne and Keenan Wynn), Dale Midskiff will be the young Jock Ewing (the late Jim Davis on the series), Molly Hagen will be young Eleanor Southworth (Barbara Bel Geddes and the late Donna Reed), David Wilson will play Jason Ewing and Hoyt Axton will play Aaron Southworth, Miss Ellie's daddy, who owned the Southfork spread and didn't take kindly to Digger climbing into her bedroom during a barbecue to pledge his undying love . . .
'A Terrific Month'
Minority employes are reporting progress in their dealings with ABC News management . . .
According to medical correspondent George Strait, ABC News recently flew in some 20 black employes -- all of the correspondents, producers and associate producers -- from around the world, for a meeting with News President Roone Arledge and his top lieutenants . . .
The group presented Arledge with figures to underscore its contention, according to Strait, "that very, very few blacks are in any editorial positions and none in senior management in the News division" . . .
Strait said they were also given a poll of about 50 black employes that showed 75 percent were dissatisfied with how they were being used at the network and how they were presented on the air ("a basic concern," said Strait. "If news shows a victim, it's a black. If they need an expert, it will be a white") . . .
The group also asked for a mechanism to be set up that would track new employes for the first year "so they won't fall through the cracks," said Strait . . .
Earlier this year, ABC News told a women's caucus that a new position of master recruiter was being set up that would report directly to Arledge. Strait said Friday that this super recruiter will now also search for other minority employes . . .
Moreover, said Strait, management has agreed to establish a black advisory board. Eight interim members -- from New York, Washington and Chicago -- have been named and their first meeting will be Thursday. A permanent board is to be named later . . .
Strait said that "for the very first time there has been an historic job posting, for positions like producers, associate producers and assignment editors" . . .
"All in all," Straight said Friday, "black employes feel we've had a terrific month" . . .
Wait, There's More
A reminder: March 1 is the deadline for applicants for the first annual $2,000 prize for the outstanding Washington-based public affairs broadcast in 1985 (on a single show or series) . . . to be awarded at the Radio and Television Correspondents Association dinner here April 10 . . .
The annual award was established to honor Joan Barone, the late executive producer of CBS' "Face the Nation," who died of cancer last March . . .
All members of the correspondents association are eligible . . .
A total of $45,000 was raised by eight Washington friends of Mrs. Barone to sustain the annual award, including Ed Fouhy of NBC News; Jack Smith and Rita Braver of CBS News; Washington Post Publisher Donald Graham; Washington attorney Bob Barnett; political pollster Peter Hart; and Al Hunt, Washington bureau chief of The Wall Street Journal . . .
Three prominent Washington journalists will judge the entries . . .
On the horizon for Channel 20 fans: the arrival of "Falcon Crest" this fall . . . to say nothing of "Facts of Life" . . .
The station has also lined up "Cheers," "Webster" and "Night Court" when they are available, probably starting in 1987 . . .
And Channel 9 has lined up the Oprah Winfrey show out of Chicago for later in the year . . .
Like, we can relate to the decision by the Peruvian government this past weekend, stopping the filming in Peru of the ABC mini-series "Out On a Limb," an adaptation of Shirley MacLaine's autobiography . . .
Cultural officials objected to dialogue between MacLaine and costar John Heard in which they speculated that beings from outer space had built Machu Picchu, Peru's most famous archeological ruin, by flying boulders to the mountaintop site in the Andes . . .
"To say extraterrestrial beings built Machu Picchu is a great offense to the country because with this they mean to affirm South Americans were not capable of building a site of such magnitude," said Oscar Nunez, director of the National Cultural Institute in Cuzco, where the film is being shot . . .
The script, which also included talk of spacecraft landing at Nazca, is being rewritten. Until then, no more filming on the five-hour project . . .