What Chris Wallace’s Big Move Says About Streaming at CNN and Fox

Big surprise Sunday morning in the world of TV news, Chris Wallace signing with Fox News, followed by a second surprise a few minutes later: Wallace will join CNN as host broadcast on the CNN+ streaming service.

Both parts of the story are about the volume of their respective networks. First, let’s tackle the CNN part. Mediaite calls Wallace to switch to CNN and stream, an “industry shocker.”
The Wall Street Journal’s Ben Mullin is right about this: “Wallace’s move to CNN+ is one of the biggest signs that CNN is investing heavily in the direct-to-consumer streaming axis.”
CNN director Jeff Zucker said as much in statement Welcome Wallace to the company. “We’re thrilled to have Chris on the ground floor to help us build the next generation of CNN and news,” said Zucker. Other employees tied to CNN+ include Kasie Hunt and Scott Galloway, and they’re just the beginning.
The subscription streaming service will launch in early 2022. As I mentioned in Sunday’s broadcast, it will feature new programming, in addition to what’s currently on cable. Sunday’s press release speak that “more information on Wallace’s programming, additional tenants, and the full CNN+ lineup will be available in the coming weeks and months.”

A great loss for Fox Newsroom

I suspect Tucker Carlson was thrilled to hear the news, but Fox’s thin-staffed Washington office was gutted on Sunday. Wallace is part of the network. Or rather, he was. A Fox source told me his passing was like a death in the family at the office. Many Fox stars praised him on Twitter and said they were disappointed by the news. “Sad to see Chris gone – he had a great run at ‘Fox News Sunday’,” Bret Baier wrote.

The rank and file staff were in complete darkness about his decision until he announced it over the air and sent a goodbye email. “This is a well-kept secret,” said Guy Benson, one of Wallace’s last guests, tweeted. Minutes after the performance, Wallace entered the newsroom and received a standing ovation from staff members as he headed toward his office, according to office sources. He spent some time chatting with his surprise producers. Whether Wallace joins this crew or not, he is the latest example of a journalist leaving Fox.

Wallace is taking her five decades of journalism experience with her and putting it on CNN. Before assuming the position of host of Fox News Sunday in 2003, Wallace was the chief correspondent for Primetime Friday and substitute host for Nightline at ABC News for 14 years. Prior to that, Wallace moderated Meet the Press on NBC News and served as the network’s White House Executive Director. Wallace, the son of “60 Minutes” reporter Mike Wallace, began printing at the Boston Globe, where he displayed clues to ambitions in the news broadcasts.

“Former Globe editor Matthew V. Storin remembers him as an ‘excellent reporter’ and an ‘aggressive, ambitious’ journalist,” the Globe said in a 2016 report. Wallace’s profile. “Storin recalls one time when Wallace returned a tape recorder to the Globe, he seemed to have forgotten what he had recorded on the tape. When Storin played the tape, he heard Wallace, in his voice. of one of his best broadcasters, pretending to be a broadcast journalist covering the Vietnam War.”

Fox is “Absolutely Tucker TV Now”

Wallace, 74, has options as his four-year Fox contract comes to an end earlier this year. The Last Wallace decision He doesn’t want to renew with Fox, according to a person with knowledge of the matter. CNN may have looked more appealing after “Patriot Purge,” Carlson’s January 6 denial, made headlines in early November.
NPR’s David Folkenflik recently reported that Baier and Wallace were so troubled with Carlson’s conspiracy crusade that they “shared their opposition” with management. But those complaints have clearly fallen on deaf ears, even though Wallace’s contract is coming to an end and execs must be aware he may be leaving. As Clive Irving wrote for The Daily Beast on Sunday, “Fox News is the complete Tucker TV Now.

“Crazy Sauce”

“The reality is that Fox that Wallace is leaving is completely different from the network he joined 18 years ago. Back then, the network tended to be conservative. But in recent years, it’s morphed into a conservative one. a partisan far-right talk channel that can comfortably push dark conspiracy theories to its viewers day and night.

Puck’s Washington correspondent Julia Ioffe made it very clear on “Reliable Sources Sunday:” Fox is like “a crazy sauce you keep burning,” she said, “and it keeps falling more and more and more and more focused, and I think that taste is not for everyone. I can understand why Chris Wallace, a more honest, more genuine journalist, I think it’s hard to stay in a place like that.”


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