Add cable's Bravo to the growing list of networks that have yanked programming following the Columbine High School massacre. Bravo has pulled a four-minute segment, called "Teen Sniper School," from this Sunday's telecast of Michael Moore's "The Awful Truth." The segment was filmed five months before the April 20 killings in Littleton, Colo.
On his Web site, Moore acknowledged that "Teen Sniper School" is one of the most "uncomfortable pieces of satire" he's produced, but argued against Bravo's decision. The segment carries easy access to guns to its "logical extreme" by arming children and teaching them to shoot as part of the school curriculum, he said.
A Bravo rep has said the cable network hopes "after some time goes by, the original intent of the satire will be more clear to viewers." Moore thinks people would have got it on Sunday. "When we show a 2-year-old holding a 9mm Glock, you are able to figure out that this is the opposite of what we want in this world," he said.
Moore said he offered to add to the segment a statement to the effect that after the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and President John F. Kennedy, it took 25 years to get a gun control bill passed, but it took only four weeks after Columbine to get the nation's second such gun law passed and six hours after the subsequent shootings at a Georgia high school to get a third bill enacted, so clearly, "the only way to get true gun control in this country is for there to be more school shootings."
Amazingly, Bravo didn't jump at the idea.
NBC News has snagged seven Edward R. Murrow Awards, including one for overall excellence, while ABC News has won three. CBS, Murrow's address for nearly 30 years, won none of this year's honors, which are bestowed by the Radio-Television News Directors Association.
NBC's wins included the "Today" show for best writing and five for "Dateline": feature reporting, investigative reporting, news series, sports reporting and use of video.
ABC's awards went to "World News Tonight" for best newscast, for its Dec. 19, 1998, coverage of the House impeachment vote, and for best continuing coverage for its reports on the investigation of the president. ABC also won in the news documentary category for the "20/20" segment on "Roy Smith's America."
After nearly 20 years as managing editor of domestic newsgathering for CNN, Earl Casey has been named vice president of public relations for the all-news network, based in Atlanta. Casey's transfer makes way for Keith McAllister, CNN's New York bureau chief of two years, to take over domestic managing editor responsibilities.
Casey has been responsible for the international network's U.S. newsgathering operations since joining CNN in 1981.
McAllister is getting a better title than Casey had: national managing editor and senior vice president of CNN domestic newsgathering. He'll be based in Atlanta and oversee newsgathering at CNN's 10 domestic bureaus and national assignment desk. McAllister joined CNN in 1986 as a production assistant in the New York bureau.
Tomorrow is Jane Robelot's last day as a host of CBS's "This Morning."
Robelot, who's been with the newscast since 1996, will be replaced for a month by Thalia Assuras, who does the news reports on the network's morning show.
Bryant Gumbel will debut in November as one of the hosts of "This Morning," as part of the network's plans to shake the morning news show out of its perennial third-place position behind NBC's "Today" and ABC's "Good Morning America." Those plans also include a new street-side studio at the southeast corner of Central Park.
CBS is searching for a Gumbel co-host; needless to say Robelot was not on that list. Her current co-host, Mark McEwen, will stay with the show, but will return to delivering weather and entertainment reports. Julie Chen will temporarily replace Assuras on the network's 5 a.m. newscast.
Forrest Sawyer, recently departed from ABC News, can be seen hosting a week-long Discovery Channel series on tornadoes next week.
"On the Inside: Twister Week," airing Monday through Friday at 8 p.m., will focus on the science of tornadoes. Sawyer will appear live each night from the Severe Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Okla.
"Twister" is the first of several Discovery projects in the works for the 11-year ABC vet, who backed up Ted Koppel on "Nightline" and Peter Jennings on "World News Tonight." He last appeared May 3 on "Nightline."
The mental health facility investigated by "60 Minutes II" in April is being shuttered. A rep for Charter Pines, part of a chain run by Charter Behavioral Health Systems, would not say whether the newsmagazine report, which included a hidden camera showing alleged falsification of patient records, influenced the decision to close the facility in Charlotte, N.C. CBS has decided to rerun the piece next Wednesday following its regular edition of "60 Minutes II."
Nannette Wilson has been named assistant news director at WRC Channel 4. The local news veteran most recently was executive producer of the station's newscasts. She replaces Ed Kosowski, who left Channel 4 last September to become news director at KGO, the ABC affiliate in San Francisco.
Wilson started at the station in 1981 as a weekend writer, working her way up to senior producer of the 6 p.m. news. Then the Frederick, Md., native left for WBAL in Baltimore, where she worked for three years before returning to WRC.
PBS and WGBH in Boston have extended their partnership on "Nova," "Frontline" and "The American Experience" for another seven years. PBS will help pay for 100 new editions of the three series over two years. In return, it gets the use for seven years of the series' libraries, which it will use on PBS direct satellite and digital multicast channels.
After 17 years of the same old format, CNN's Headline News will unveil a new look next week.
Starting Tuesday, Headline News will feature segments as short as one minute. The news day will be divided into four six-hour blocks, and segments aired in one block won't be repeated in another. Each news block will have different on-screen colors, and there will be new music and graphics. To keep viewers from using the remote control, Headline News will begin running sidebars on the screen, promoting upcoming stories. And there'll be no more lengthy blocks of, for instance, international, political or medical news.
CAPTION: Michael Moore's satirical take on school violence has landed on Bravo's cutting-room floor.