Les Moonves Holds Court at CBS Holiday Bash

By Chris Ariens 

CBS Corp. CEO Les Moonves — sans wife Julie Chen who is fully ensconced in L.A. for her ensemble daytime show, “The Talk” — celebrated with his CBS minions, and the press who cover them, at CBS’ Black Rock headquarters last night.

CBS' annual airing of "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" drew 12.2 million viewers Nov. 30.

Several stars of CBS primetime shows were there, including Tom Selleck who stars in “Blue Bloods,” and Christine Baranski and Matt Czuchry of “The Good Wife.” And while Moonves can tout having the most-watched TV network, the stars of his struggling news division also worked the room — including the new front four of “The Early Show:” Erica Hill, Chris Wragge,  Jeff Glor and Marysol Castro. The team will be hitting the road next week, making stops at several CBS affiliates where the #3-in-the-ratings show performs relatively well. (Our sister blog TVSpy reports Wragge’s last day on WCBS is today.)


We talked with show EP David Friedman and CBS News & Sports President Sean McManus who both expressed their confidence in the team. “It’ll take some time,” said McManus, “but this is a good group. I’m excited.”

McManus was chatting up Jeff Fager, who oversees the gold-standard in TV News, as EP of “60 Minutes.” Fager talked to us about Sunday’s installment of the program, which sees incoming House Speaker John Boehner breaking down on camera, and an interview with Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones.

NFL on CBS lead play-by-play man Jim Nantz, who knows a thing or two about the Cowboys and Jones, was also in attendance.

Katie Couric and her CBS Evening News EP Rick Kaplan were there, as were Morley Safer, Charles Osgood, and WCBS anchors Kristine Johnson, Mary Calvi, Maurice Dubois, Dana Tyler, Don Dahler and Peter Dunn, President of CBS Television Stations.