WGN America to launch newscast, announces new anchor team
WGN America will be launching a new newscast “News Nation,” which will be led by anchors Joe Donlon, Marni Hughes and Rob Nelson.
The newscast is set to debut on Sept. 1.
The new program will air from 8 to 11 p.m. and is a gamble by WGN America and parent company Nexstar Media Group that there is demand for politically neutral news on cable. While the program is set to be scheduled for three hours, including weekends, it will have extended coverage when needed.
WGN America executive vice president Sean Compton says that the company has done in-depth research which shows demand for a news service without a political bent.
However, Andrew Heyward, former TV news executive and senior research professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University, said “News Nation” might face a “difficult test against the viewing habits that have become entrenched in recent years.”
“They are venturing into uncharted territory. I always welcome new news programming, but I’m not sure being non-partisan is going to be a sufficient driver of audience with all the other options out there.”
As per current plans, “News Nation” will broadcast out of Chicago in the same location used by WGN and will make use of journalists working in Nexstar’s local TV stations across the country.
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