MSNBC Shelves Development of 10pm Show

By Andrew Gauthier 

Associated Press

MSNBC is much less likely to start a third prime-time news show because its executives are pleased with how well a repeat of Keith Olbermann‘s “Countdown” is doing at 10 p.m. ET.

MSNBC chief executive Phil Griffin talked this year of actively searching for a new 10 p.m. host. Reruns of Olbermann’s 8 p.m. show have aired there since March 2008.


Yet in October, Olbermann has averaged 600,000 viewers in that later time slot, nearly on par with Anderson Cooper‘s 689,000 on CNN, the Nielsen Co. said. In the 25-to-54 demographic, which MSNBC most actively courts, Olbermann’s rerun beat Cooper’s first-run show in that hour for the first time ever. Fox News Channel’s Greta Van Susteren leads with just under 2 million total viewers.

Olbermann’s rerun is getting nearly 60 percent of the audience that his first-run show does earlier in the evening, Nielsen said.

“We’re looking, but nothing (new) has even come close to going in there at 10,” Griffin said. “We’ve set the bar so high we don’t want to break that success.” More…