Now that CNN’s interim leadership has been given a longer leash to run the network, they can flesh out some of the programming decisions that have been in limbo since Chris Licht’s departure in early June.
The 9 p.m. ET hour, which Kaitlan Collins recently inherited, now has a name: The Source with Kaitlan Collins.
The new name was announced Tuesday night during CNN’s Fourth of July broadcast special and will debut on Monday, July 10.
According to Variety’s Brian Steinberg, CNN is billing The Source as an opportunity for Collins to “bring fresh reporting that adds new perspective to the biggest stories of the day. She will expose uncovered angles and challenge conventional wisdom to make sure viewers are seeing a story from every side.”
It’s been a meteoric rise for Collins at CNN, who, as recently as October 2022, was the network’s chief White House correspondent. This past November, Collins became a co-anchor for CNN’s revamped morning show CNN This Morning, remaining in that position until May of this year, when she transitioned to primetime to anchor the 9 p.m. ET hour.
Collins has been in the news as of late. She moderated the highly-publicized and scrutinized live CNN town hall with former President Trump in May. Despite the chaotic nature of the event, Collins received mostly positive reviews for her performance.
Her show getting a new, permanent name seemingly closes an unstable period for CNN and the 9 p.m. timeslot — a thorn in CNN’s side since Chris Cuomo’s departure in December 2021. A lack of consistency at 9 p.m. has undoubtedly played a role in the network’s poor Nielsen primetime ratings performance, particularly when the news cycle is slower.
After a negative headline-filled May and early June, CNN experienced a relatively good second half of the month. Compared to May, the network regained +29% in total primetime viewers—and -14% among adults 25-54, +19% in total day viewers—and +19% among adults 25-54 in total day during the month of June. Relative to the year-ago month (June 2022), CNN saw -3% in total primetime viewers, -13% in the primetime demo—and +1% in total day viewers, -4% in the total day demo.
Now that the 9 p.m. timeslot has been settled, executives can focus on fixing CNN This Morning and stabilizing the rest of CNN’s night-time line-up.