The network will replace the just-canceled The Revolution with a test run of an afternoon version of Good Morning America under the purview of the network’s entertainment division.
ABC affiliates are looking forward to a planned test run of an afternoon version of Good Morning America this summer, according to Bill Hoffman, vice president of Cox Media Group and chairman of the ABC affiliates group. “We love GMA as a franchise,” Hoffman said. “It will be interesting what we find out.”
The move is intended to provide “a more holistic look at the lineup,” Hoffman said following Monday’s meeting of the affiliate board at the NAB Show in Las Vegas. The show will be a replacement for its lifestyle show The Revolution, which will die July 7, after running barely six months.
While NBC’s Today show remains the leader among morning news shows, Good Morning America last week apparently won a full week, according to preliminary ratings. The absence of Today host Matt Lauer, who was on vacation, likely aided GMA in the win. Nonetheless, if GMA’s win holds up, it would mark the first time since December 1995 that GMA has won a full week.
ABC last year took the dramatic step of canceling two long-running and popular soap operas, All My Children and One Life To Life. It replaced them with The Chew, a cooking show that has garnered solid ratings, and The Revolution, which hasn’t.
The Revolution, a health and lifestyle show, featured Project Runway’s Tim Gunn, fitness trainer Harley Pasternak, designer Ty Pennington, Dr. Jennifer Ashton and therapist-relationship expert Dr. Tiffanie Davis.
ABC took some heat for dropping the two long-running and popular soaps. Possibly still stung by that, the network recently decided to re-up the venerable General Hospital for a 50th season.
“We’re glad the soap opera survives,” Hoffman said.
Hoffman characterized the overall tone of the affiliate board meeting as “upbeat.” He noted that while retrans-reverse compensation came up during discussions, “We understand that the network having a piece of retransmission is part of their business.”