Gibbons, Trifecta Aim To Grow 'America Now'

The Raycom-created newsmagazine hosted and executive produced by Leeza Gibbons is in its third season and has enlisted Trifecta to help it expand its roster of stations. "Our goal is get wider national distribution. We’ve almost been doing this in a vacuum. The great thing about Trifecta is that they have a lot of established relationships.”
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Leeza Gibbons, executive producer of Raycom-created newsmagazine America Now, says she has had enough time to work out the show’s kinks without a whole lot of scrutiny. She co-hosts the show with Bill Rancic. Now in its third season, America Now airs in 45 markets in mostly small to midsize Raycom markets.

Last month, syndicator Trifecta joined the show’s multi-company team — the show is produced by ITV Studios. Trifecta’s mission is to land big-market clearances.

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“As an executive producer on the show I’m keenly interested in how we’re being distributed and the deals being made and the marketability of the show to stations,” Gibbons says. “Our goal is get wider national distribution. Trifecta has been charged with energizing the effort. They are putting information into the pipeline so people know about the show. We’ve almost been doing this in a vacuum. The great thing about Trifecta is that they have a lot of established relationships.”

America Now is an informational newsmagazine that’s less like the entertainment newsmagazines Gibbons has co-hosted over the years — CBS Television Distribution’s Entertainment Tonight and Warner Bros.’ Extra — and more like a blend of morning news and informational talk show like Today’s fourth hour. Some of the content is culled from Raycom’s stations. “That gives the stations an aspect of ownership in the show,” Gibbons says. “We’re on their air, so I work for them. I want to be really sure that what we’re delivering is what they need. We are adaptable and flexible and we’ve done local contests with some of the stations.”

The show’s content also includes a big chunk of original content. “About 50% of our stories we produce out of L.A.,” Gibbons says. “Bill and I always do the lead stories. Then, we have contributors with areas of specialty. That gives us a nice cross-section of voices.”

America Now has a wholesomeness to it that Gibbons doesn’t think will dim as the show expands to bigger markets.

“To be a national show doesn’t force us to lose our local connections,” she says. “It makes us more of what we’re doing. Our production value is great. The team is topnotch. They’ve lived through startup shows. They’ve been around. They’re pros, so I don’t think the show will change.”

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Ratings

Overnights, adults 18-49 for September 22, 2016
  • 1.
    4.0/14
  • 2.
    1.7/6
  • 3.
    1.3/5
  • 4.
    0.9/3
  • 5.
    0.6/2
  • 6.
    0.3/1
Source: Nielsen

Reviews

  • Rob Owen

    Easily fall’s best broadcast network comedy pilot, NBC’s The Good Place offers a clever high-concept premise that’s complemented with intelligent, sometimes absurdist humor. Created by Michael Schur, co-creator of NBC’s Parks and Recreation, The Good Place is a highly serialized series that’s essentially set in heaven and stars Kristen Bell and Ted Danson. NBC made five episodes of The Good Place available for review, and the show not only holds up, but also it improves, deepening characters that initially feel one-note and frequently leaving viewers guessing with cliffhanger endings to many of the episodes. The combination of snappy dialogue and winning but flawed characters makes The Good Place a great bet for fans of smart TV comedy.

  • Maureen Ryan

    Pitch has swagger, for good reason. It gets the big things right; the Fox drama about the first female baseball player in the Major Leagues is one of the year’s most assured and exciting debuts. But part of what impresses about the pilot is also the way it confidently strings together so many small but telling details. Ginny (Kylie Bunbury) is the first woman to be called up from the minors to the big leagues, and no show since Friday Night Lights has done a better job of portraying the internal and external pressures that weigh heavily on young athletes asked to do much more than merely succeed on the field. Pitch will likely do a good job of getting viewers to root for it. The hope is that the show won’t be an impressive, short-lived curiosity, but rather a long-term phenomenon.

  • Kevin Fallon

    In a fall TV season that’s already making a splash for championing diverse, distinctive voices in an array of projects that they created, wrote, and starred in, Better Things on FX stands out. The show is created by, written by, and starsPamela Adlon. She plays Sam Fox, the single mother of three daughters modeled after her own reality-show-ready experience raising three girls in Los Angeles following a divorce. Sam is also, like Adlon, a working actress — on shows both raunchy, a la Californication, and animated for children, like her role on Recess. It’s a refreshingly blunt take on single motherhood without sacrificing the warmth of parental love, portraying the dance between selfishness and selflessness that’s at the heart of being a parent — especially one weathering the hormonal fireworks of a household of four women at different ages.

  • David Wiegand

    The fall TV season doesn’t count as much as it used to — we already know that. But no matter how many retreads the broadcast networks throw at viewers in the next few months, this fall will be memorable because of the premiere of Atlanta on Tuesday, Sept. 6, on FX. The half-hour comedy created by and starring Donald Glover (Community), simply and brilliantly recalibrates our expectations of what a TV comedy is and how black lives are portrayed on the medium.

  • Louisa Ada Seltzer

    The second reboot of the 1980s John Candy movie Uncle Buck, bumped by ABC from midseason, has the same tired jokes you'll find on any second-rate sitcom. Too bad, because Mike Epps is appealing and ABC would be wise to keep him around for future shows, but there’s just not enough to this show to suggest it will last past summer. It also airs against NBC’s America’s Got Talent, summer’s No. 1 program on broadcast, which may make it even harder to find an audience.

  • Neil Genzlinger

    Bryan Cranston brings his Tony Award-winning interpretation of President Lyndon B. Johnson to television in an adaptation of the Robert Schenkkan play All the Way, and it’s still quite a sight to behold, just as it was on Broadway in 2014. Nothing beats witnessing this kind of larger-than-life portrayal onstage, of course. But the television version, presented by HBO, offers plenty of rewards, allowing Cranston to work the close-ups and liberating him from the confines of a theater set. Cranston’s performance is a gem — in his hands, this accidental president comes across as an amazing bundle of contradictions, someone who seems at once too vulgar for the job and just right for it.

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