*Veteran journalist Bill Whitaker is your newest correspondent for “60 Minutes.”
CBS News chairman and “60 Minutes” executive producer Jeff Fager made the announcement today. Whitaker, who has been based in Los Angeles, will move to the New York area and begin appearing on the program in the fall, reports Deadline.com.
Whitaker has covered virtually all of the major news stories in the West since he was posted to Los Angeles in 1992, reporting regularly for the “CBS Evening News” and other CBS News broadcasts. He also has worked for CBS News’s “Sunday Morning” turning out feature stories and profiles, including ones on Barbra Streisand, Norman Lear, Gladys Knight, and Mike Tyson.
*When Michael Jackson died, basically, he was broke. Reportedly he was half a billion dollars in debt.
However, in death he is doing quite well. Between sales of his and savvy business deals, his estate in bringing more than enough to retire the debt.
If you’ve ever wondered what he spent his money on this Sunday’s “60 Minutes” (at 7pm E/P) could give you a clue. A whole bunch of them, in fact. Correspondent Laura Logan reports on Jackson’s turnaround and gets a private tour of some of the personal items that meant the most to him.
While the Jackson Estate amasses millions through The Michael Jackson Immortal Tour, an acrobatic performance to his music by Cirque Du Soleil, iTunes and album sales, his possessions sit in storage. Nobody knows what they are worth. It’s anybody’s guess at what they could bring at auction with the right people biding.
Karen Langford, a friend of Jackson’s who worked with him since 1981, is the archivist for the Jackson estate. She takes Logan for a tour of a warehouse full of Jackson’s memorabilia.
The tour begins, appropriately, with the Neverland sign sitting on the floor of the 20,000-foot warehouse. It once sat atop the gates to his famous compound that included an amusement park, zoo and his mansion.
Inside, Logan sees Grammy awards, a fleet of cars, antiques, video games, and some of the clothing he wore on stage. The sequined glove he wore on the Billie Jean Tour, worth an estimated $80,000, is kept in a safe on premises.
*Newtown father Jimmy Greene and his wife joined fellow parents and spouses of Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting victims for an emotional “60 Minutes” segment on the eve of their visit to Congress to lobby for gun violence prevention measures.
Seven of the families, all members of the group Sandy Hook Promise, sat down on Sunday’s episode with interviewer Scott Pelley to recount the events of “12/14,” the term family members use in reference to that horrific morning of December 14th.
Greene told Pelley that it was an honor to have known his six year-old, Ana Marquez-Greene, and that he cries every day. Others who sat down for the interview include the parents of slain children Dylan Hockley, Ana, Benjamin Wheeler, Daniel Barden, and Jesse Lewis, as well as the mother of slain teacher Lauren Rousseau and the husband of school psychologist Mary Sherlach.
Many of the parents spoke wrenchingly of the moments leading up to the discovery of their children’s fates. In the second part of the interview, some of the parents took us through the heartbreak of finding out what had happened to their kids.
The mother of Dylan Hockley, and Ana’s parents Jimmy and Nelba Marquez-Greene each had a child who survived the shooting, and one who didn’t.
“Someone said to me, you know, ‘I’ve seen Jake. He’s in… he’s in one of the other rooms,’” Nicole Hockley remembered, “and that was a relief, you know, a moment of, ‘he’s okay, and that’s okay that he’s okay,’ and… and a woman asked me, ‘What… what classroom was your other child in?’ and I said, ‘Ms. Soto.’ and she said, ‘I heard she got shot.’ and I got… I got really angry at her, and I remember very clearly saying, ‘Don’t you dare say that to me if you don’t know it’s true.’”
Jimmy Greene, with wife Nelba Marquez-Greene, holds a photo of their daughter Ana, who was killed on Dec. 14, 2012 in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings
Jimmy Greene remembered being reunited with his son, Isaiah. “I just went and grabbed him and held him,” Greene said, “and he was just crying, ‘daddy,’ you know, ‘there were so many gunshots and,’ you know, ‘I saw this and I saw that.’ So, I just took my son in my arms. He’s a big kid; I took him like he was two years old again and held him on my shoulder and was just running from room to room, trying to locate Ana’s class.”
But neither parent would be reunited with their other child. Governor Dannel Malloy eventually appeared to tell the remaining family members that “if we were in that room, that our child or adult wasn’t coming back to us.”
*ABC made it official in an announcement this morning – former CBS News reporter and “60 Minutes” correspondent Byron Pitts has joined ABC News as an anchor and chief national correspondent based in New York.
He’ll also play a significant role on ABC’s Friday newsmagazine “20/20,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. Pitts will appear across ABC News broadcasts and platforms, beginning later this month.
In making the announcement Monday morning, ABC News president Ben Sherwood praised Pitts as an “accomplished reporter and brilliant storyteller.”
“Byron has a unique talent for stories about people and communities facing the longest odds,” wrote Sherwood in an email to ABC News staffers.
*ABC News is reportedly close to signing “60 Minutes correspondent Byron Pitts, according to Politico.com.
“Pitts will serve as both chief national correspondent and anchor at ABC News, and will appear across the network’s programming. ABC News President Ben Sherwood is expected to announce the news next week,” Dylan Byers of Politico reported.
“Pitts is just the latest in a string of high-profile hires for the network,” Byers continued. “Sherwood announced the hire of New York Times reporters Jeff Zeleny and Susan Saulny earlier this week, as well as the appointment of Rick Klein to political director.
Both Pitts and Saulny are black journalists, providing a marked contrast with the new hires at CNN after Jeff Zucker recently assumed the top job, notes TheRoot.com.
“Zucker hired white journalists Jake Tapper, Chris Cuomo and Rachel Nichols while sidelining anchor Soledad O’Brien, who is black and Latina. Zucker’s appointment also prompted the resignation of Mark Whitaker, an African American who was CNN executive vice president and managing editor. Zucker’s personnel moves prompted protests from the National Association of Black Journalists and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists.”
Pitts, 52, joined CBS News as a correspondent in May 1998. He was named a contributing correspondent on “60 Minutes” in 2009, becoming the first African American presence on the show since correspondent Ed Bradley died in 2006.
Meanwhile, Pitts’ wife, Lyne Pitts, is also involved in a new venture. She is heading up the U.S. operation of Arise News, a 24-hour international TV news operation that launched last month.
*Lil Wayne admits he’s no trendsetter since fans, foe, and critics have chattered about his white styrofoam cup appearance on “60 Minutes” a while ago.
The rapper unashamedly showed off his disposable cup on national television, causing the “double cup” trend and leaving people wondering what was in his cup.
We’ll probably never know what he was drinking, but the whole cup incident wasn’t his original idea.
“I did it cuz Pimp C did it, flat out,” he tells MTV’s Sway Calloway during the “MTV First” premiere of his “No Worries” music video.
“All I listen to all day is UGK. Everybody know that. Everybody know Pimp C, to me… I mean, you know, next to God and my mama and my kids, man, it’s Pimp C.”
That’s like godhood status.
In honor of his favorite rap hero, he decided to sport the double cup, no matter if anyone else thinks it’s too hood for television.
“I didn’t do it to be cool. And it didn’t matter if Pimp C was cool to you,” Wayne says. “I know I can get in my car and go listen to the radio and then I’m not about to hear Pimp C, so obviously Pimp C ain’t cool to everybody else.”
Now that the dust has cleared and everyone’s pretty much over it, the fact of the matter is, the ‘double cup’ move has become the rap-guy’s signature. If one happens to get a relevant television interview and doesn’t have the styrofoam cup, he’s not in the club of cool kids.