Word from the Keith Olbermann camp – Mr. Olbermann broke the news on a conference call today that his new television show will begin this spring on Current TV. No word yet on what day or time the show starts, but his more than 1 million nightly fans of the former Countdown on MSNBC will be more than pleased to tune in. More from the NYTimes;
The untitled hour of news and commentary will effectively mimic “Countdown,” the MSNBC program that Mr. Olbermann conceived eight years ago and quit hosting last month. Mr. Olbermann told reporters on a conference call Tuesday that the new program would be “an improved, and we hope amplified and stronger, version of the show that I just did.”
Current is betting that Mr. Olbermann will put it on the cable map — and it needs the help. The channel averages just 23,000 viewers in prime time each night.
Mr. Olbermann drew about 1 million viewers to his MSNBC program each night. This is “the best investment that Current has ever made,” said another channel co-founder, Joel Hyatt.
Mr. Olbermann will have an equity stake in the company, and he will also have a management role. As the chief news officer, he will develop new programs and provide editorial guidance to the channel’s journalists.
“We are counting down the days to Keith Olbermann’s return to television,” the channel’s chief executive, Mark Rosenthal, said on the conference call. But he did not announce a premiere date or a time slot for the program.
With Current TV, Mr. Olbermann gains a measure of independence. Unlike most cable channels, including MSNBC, which are owned by large media companies, Current is privately and independently owned by Mr. Gore, the former vice president, and other backers.
Mr. Gore praised Mr. Olbermann in a statement. “We are delighted to provide Keith with the independent platform and freedom that Current can and does uniquely offer,” he said.
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