Chris Licht’s chaotic reign at the top of CNN is over

CNN Chris Light He is stepping down after a tumultuous stint at the top of the cable news network, where he was seen as having lost the support of the newsroom.

His departure comes after a year of difficult press and public flops, including the disastrous town hall event with… Donald Trump and a misfire rerun of the morning show, which quickly fell apart with the sudden departure of without a lemon. His leadership has also been chasing before Anemia assessments and decrease in profits. Finally, his management of the network belied the stellar reputation he had earned in the industry as a former MSNBC producer morning atmosphere, CBS this morning, And The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

“A palpable sense of relief is widespread in the building. “It can’t continue at this point,” a CNN source said. Vanity Fair.

The president of Warner Bros. told us. Discovery David Zaslav Licht personally reported early Wednesday morning that his time at CNN was up. Things were going in that direction over the weekend. A source close to the situation had made this Monday morning VF The carefully phrased comment, “It doesn’t have to be fatal.” This may have been true for a hot second, but we’re told things are moving pretty quickly, as mounting comments from people on and off CNN made it abundantly clear that Licht had completely lost the room and there was no going back. reports for this purpose Brian Stelter in New York And Oliver Darcy In the CNN media newsletter, I helped crystallize the matter to higher-ups. Licht must have sensed that the writing was on the wall. We’re told he met with the talent all day Tuesday to try and repair the damage, but we scuttled talks with If You Stay.

It seems that Licht’s fate was sealed last Friday by A.J Destructive profile in Atlantic Ocean by the journalist Tim Alberta, which portrayed Licht as a detached executive with little vision of how the news network should be run on cable. Alberta, who spoke to nearly 100 CNN staffers while reporting on the profile, wrote that everyone “was asking some variation of the same question: Did Licht have any idea what he was doing?”

In addition, he wrote, “CNN staff asked me, again and again, to seek some humility in their leader,” even “a portion of self-awareness.” Despite Alberta’s painful assessment, Licht appears in the article as overly self-assured while criticizing elements of the CNN press prior to his tenure, bragging to Alberta about his training routine, and defending his leadership of the network.

As we reported on Monday, after conversations with good sources connected to the thinking at the top, Zaslav hasn’t been happy with where things have come to with CNN and his concerns have been creeping up for several months now. In February, he started the conversation about hiring a chief operating officer to work alongside Licht as a stabilizing force, and to strengthen network management.

Implicit subject of the Atlantic The article was that Zaslav had run Licht to the bone and that Licht might have fallen for the execution of an overly demanding chief. Zaslav’s sympathizers might argue that he’s known for being a committed executive and that CNN ended up asking for more involvement than expected for a unit that represents about 5% of Warner Bros.’s business. Discovery.


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