It’s just over two weeks since WNYW/Channel 5 made wholesale changes to its on-air product. Front and center was the promotion of Greg Kelly from Good Day New York to evening anchor. His move to 10 p.m. with Dari Alexander sent market icon Ernie Anastos to the sidelines. He remains on the 5 p.m. broadcast.
Multiple sources close to the situation say three high-ranking Fox executives met yesterday with WNYW VP/GM Lew Leone for “damage control.”
FishbowlNY has learned that Jack Abernathy, Dennis Swanson, and Sharri Berg met with Leone, although news director Dianne Doctor was a no-show.
One source says the trio came to 67th Street to “figure out how to handle Greg in the 10 o’clock news.”
With Kelly at night, Dave Price stepped into Good Day with Rosanna Scotto. FishbowlNY readers have given mixed reviews, to be kind, about Price’s performance and his chemistry with Scotto.
Our readers also offered strong opinions about Kelly’s transformation to night time. Most prefer Kelly on mornings, where he spent four years, bouncing off Scotto. One reason is because Kelly brings much of his daytime style to the more subdued evening broadcast.
As we reported in our review after Kelly’s “opening night,” there were too many ad libs, treating it too loosely for a serious-minded late newscast.
Now with ratings taking an immediate nosedive to rival WPIX in the morning and at 10 p.m., Fox honchos, apparently, are in agreement.
“They have an internal issue with Greg running the show,” one source tells FishbowlNY.
Along with ad libbing too much, “which is sometimes inaccurate,” the source says, Kelly is dropping and adding stories on his own, making producers “go crazy.”
A source says the executives were forced to hold the meeting after getting inundated with negative viewer feedback.
A WNYW spokeswoman tells FishbowlNY, “We have meetings all the time.”