October 18, 2005, - 10:26 am
By Debbie Schlussel
Yesterday, ABC News announced its new anchors and new format for “Nightline,” given lefty Ted Koppel’s (thank goodness) departure.
In March of this year, I was invited by ABC News to participate in a pilot to replace “Nightline.” The pilot was shot at ABC’s New York Times Square studio–used for “Good Morning America.” (I was not paid by ABC for the experience.)
I was the conservative versus a liberal from Air America (a lesbian who looked like a junior K.D. Lang) along with a comedian. We discussed and debated several “pressing” issues–including why people hate Hillary Clinton and Martha Stewart, whether Michael Jackson would be found guilty, and why the gazillionaire Olsen Twins dress like the homeless–as moderated by John Fugelsang, formerly of “Talk Soup.” We also discussed whether the Bush Administration used the warnings and high alerts in New York to gain votes in the Presidential election. (Fugelsang, to his credit, was the only one to correctly predict that Jackson would be acquitted.)
Our two segments were part of a variety “Good Morning America”-style show hosted by several Gen-X ABC News reporters, including Jake Tapper. It was all shot in a smoky nightclub setting complete with audience members seated at tables, smoke, drinks, and a band. A New York Times story, earlier this year, leaked some of the details.
Needless to say, ABC did not pick up our pilot in place of “Nightline.”
Tags: ABC, Bush administration, comedian, Debbie Schlussel Yesterday, Good Morning America, Hillary Clinton, Jake Tapper, John Fugelsang, K.D. Lang, Martha Stewart, Michael Jackson, New York, New York Times, Nightline, Square studio, Ted Koppel