Anne Sweeney on the Magic ABC News Brings to Disney: ‘Well Worth the Money’

By Chris Ariens 

B&C’s Marisa Guthrie reports on a town hall meeting held by Disney/ABC Television Group chief Anne Sweeney for employees. Some of the questions, not surprisingly, were about ABC News, including the GMA co-anchor situation.

While Sweeney dismissed the rumor that ABC/Disney was considering a plan to move Good Morning America back under the purview of the entertainment division, when she was pressed on a successor for GMA, she answered “curtly,” said one source: “No decision has been made.”

Sweeney was in New York speaking at the Reuters Global Media Summit Monday. Reuters’ Robert MacMillan caught up with Sweeney and asked her about how ABC News fits into the greater ABC/Disney empire.


MacMillan: How much will you preserve ABC’s news budget when the returns in this fragmenting news media landscape are lesser than ever?

Sweeney: The budgets are always going to change, just as they have in the other parts and certainly in our other businesses.

MacMillan: I take it the budgets are going to keep shrinking.

Sweeney: The budgets are gonna keep changing. You can no more predict when the next great national emergency is going to happen, and you’re going to have to deploy those resources because people are counting on you. One of the things that distinguishes ABC News from a lot of people that are providing opinion out there is really their standard of excellence. Their standards of journalism are very, very high. And I think it is well worth the money.