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Plea: Never on 'Sunday' (Osgood hopes for b'casts free of big news)
DAILY NEWS ^ | January 21, 2004 | RICHARD HUFF

Posted on 01/21/2004 7:54:09 AM PST by presidio9

Here are three words anchor Charles Osgood dreads: This just in. "I'm the only anchor on CBS who drives to work hoping there isn't any breaking news," the face of "CBS Sunday Morning" told the Daily News.

His reluctance is understandable.

The hallmark of "Sunday Morning" has been longer-than-usual, well-thought-out pieces on a variety of topics producers think appropriate for those watching in their bathrobes.

With the capture of Saddam Hussein, or any news of the same magnitude, producers are forced to cut, or even completely scrap, such pieces.

"I hope we can put on the broadcast we've prepared," Osgood said. "But I understand, news goes with the territory."

Osgood, 71, has presided over the leisurely-paced broadcast for the last decade, having taken over for the late Charles Kuralt, who made the program a signature newsmagazine for CBS.

"I think it's different, it has what it takes to make a broadcast last. People want to keep coming back week after week," said Osgood, now in contract talks to stay with the program.

"We can do pieces a little longer, a little more reflective, for people actually sitting down in a room," he added.

"CBS Sunday Morning" launched Jan. 28, 1979. The show currently airs from 9 to 11:30 a.m., leaving Osgood and his CBS colleagues plenty of time to spread their wings and talk about topics such as the arts, media, music, current events and, perhaps more important, real people.

"We tell stories as stories, and tell stories as positives," Osgood said. "They make you admire somebody, or respect something."

That also means a decided lack of airtime for the peccadillos of Michael Jackson, for example, which might get a brief mention during a news segment.

We're not going to shock-value pieces," he said.

Osgood said there hasn't been much of a pull internally to change the focus of the program toward more salacious, sometimes ratings-rich fare.

Sunday mornings are also refreshing for Osgood in that he can "sleep in" - until 4:30 a.m. On weekdays, when he does his regular radio bits for "The Osgood File," he wakes at a jaw-dropping 2:30 a.m.

Better yet, Sundays provide a haven away from the press conferences and politics that can change news in an instant.

"The broadcast has evolved ever since it went on the air," Osgood said. "But the principle is the same and the attitude toward the audience is the same."

And that includes the program's signature end piece, a few minutes of nature footage with ambient sound.

"I think it's always been true in television, where less is more in chin music," Osgood said. "You shouldn't fight the picture by trying to provide a word picture of your own."

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; Philosophy; US: New Jersey; US: New York
KEYWORDS: cbsnews; charlesosgood; theosgoodfiles

1 posted on 01/21/2004 7:54:12 AM PST by presidio9
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To: presidio9
I still like to watch this show after all these years. I could do without that whiny liberal woman commentator they have, though.
2 posted on 01/21/2004 10:08:13 AM PST by NYCVirago
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To: NYCVirago

I also like the precursor to all shows like Sunday Morning --

Omnibus: Television's Golden Age 
Airing on all three networks during its 1952-1961 run, "Omnibus" was television's first showcase for the performing and creative arts, with segments running the gamut from opera to drama, from jazz to science documentaries. See such notables as Leonard Bernstein, James Dean, Nichols and May, and Jonathan Winters in their TV debuts; watch rare clips featuring Victor Borge, Benny Goodman, Gene Kelly and Senator John F. Kennedy; and hear from series host Alistair Cooke.
3 posted on 01/21/2004 10:18:54 AM PST by gcruse (
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