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Chris Wallace is apparently hard to please. The journalist who claimed he was uncomfortable with the programming at Fox News is said to be also uncomfortable at the CNN+ streaming service.
According to a source cited by media observer Jon Nicosia, Wallace, the former host of “Fox News Sunday,” is “‘having daily breakdowns’ over the ‘miserable launch’ of @CNNplus. Wants a ‘CNN show or is threatening to walk’ they go on. ‘He is having staffers count how many times a day his promo is playing.'”
After he abruptly announced he was leaving FNC in December 2021, Wallace was hired by then-CNN President Jeff Zucker, the obsessively anti-Trump executive who subsequently stepped down amidst an internal scandal.
Zucker was apparently one of the prime movers behind launching of the paid subscription service.
As things stand now, the future of CNN+ appears to be in doubt after a corporate acquisition of ratings-challenged CNN’s parent company.
CNN+ perhaps might appropriately be described as CNN minus.
According a report on Tuesday from CNBC, “Fewer than 10,000 people are using CNN+ on a daily basis two weeks into its existence, according to people familiar with the matter.”
SOURCE: Chris Wallace is "having daily breakdowns" over the "miserable launch" of @CNNplus. Wants a "CNN show or is threatening to walk" they go on. "He is having staffers count how many times a day his promo is playing"
— Jon Nicosia (@NewsPolitics) April 12, 2022
“Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav hasn’t commented publicly on CNN+’s long-term future…Ex-WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar decided to push ahead with CNN+’s launch two weeks before merging the company with Discovery,” the financial network added.
For what it’s worth, unlike Fox Nation for example, CNN+ does not include a replay of CNN’s prime-time programming in addition to original content. CNN itself has seen its viewership crater, so it would be something of a surprise, moreover, that consumers would rush to sign up for the streamer.
According to Axios, Discovery is planning to substantially reduce its CNN+ funding, perhaps a source of Chris Wallace’s angst, which was originally projected to be a staggering $1 billion.
“Hundreds of millions of dollars are expected to be cut from that original investment total. To date, around $300 million has been spent on the subscription service, which includes a sizable marketing investment. The new company’s leadership team still has yet to decide the ultimate fate of CNN+. CNN’s new boss, Chris Licht, will start May 1.”
Chris Wallace finally shares why he left Fox News, citing reasons he was no longer ‘comfortable’ https://t.co/4YP2bJnvn6
— Jack Furnari (@JackBPR) March 27, 2022
In the meantime, Fox News staff hardly took kindly to Wallace’s comments bashing his longtime employer, the Daily Mail claimed in late March.
‘Chris Wallace’s Fox News Sunday was fourth in a four-horse race and never got out of 4th place throughout his entire 18 years of hosting the show. He was the only anchor at Fox not to helm a number one show,’ one insider said.
‘This story really isn’t surprising. What’s shocking is it took Chris 18 years to leave but I suppose when you’re earning millions upon millions of dollars every year, you’re happy to stay and amass great wealth and a personal fortune that his viewers could only ever dream of’…
Fox officials have declined to comment on Wallace’s decision to stick the knife into his former employer, who are believed to have paid him around $7 million a year.
However a network insider said: ‘Clearly he’s launching a new show, so he needs eyeballs and bashing Fox is an easy way to try and get viewers to find him at his new home.’
Outkick media columnist Bobby Burack has some bad news and possibly some good news for Chris Wallace.
“As a standalone service, CNN+ has virtually no promise. The most likely outcome is that Discovery folds CNN+ into HBO Max along with Discovery+…If CNN scales back its focus on streaming, Chris Wallace’s future at the company may change considerably,” Burack wrote. “Zucker hired Wallace to be the face of the service. And because CNN is paying Wallace TV money to host a daily streaming show, perhaps Licht will look to move Wallace to its linear lineup in the next year.”
In fact, Nicosia’s source also claims that Wallace would like to glom onto Chris Cuomo‘s former CNN time slot.
That Chris Wallace is allegedly not a happy camper, based on the Nicosia source, at his new job seems to be interpreted as a form of schadenfreude on social media. Here is just a small selection:
Feel good news of the day.
— Jade (@jadedjade863) April 12, 2022
I’d say he is getting exactly what he deserves?
— Daniel Bones (@danielgbones) April 12, 2022
— NBaker (@harlansharlot) April 12, 2022
Has there ever been a human being that made a worse career move than Chris Wallace going from the most watched cable news network in America to a streaming service with less daily users than the average OnlyFans account
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) April 12, 2022
Chris Wallace left Fox News to average 10,000 viewers a day on CNN+.
Seeing him fail makes me feel absolutely wonderful.
— Real Defender🇺🇸 (@real_defender) April 13, 2022
How stupid does Chris Wallace look right now? https://t.co/pcxNCcEARk
— Buzz Patterson (@BuzzPatterson) April 12, 2022
— Jerry Rosen (@Shortrosen) April 12, 2022
At his age you either finish your career at Fox or retire. You don’t blame “Tucker Carlson” for why you can’t stay with Fox only to join Brian Steltar.
— A Deplorable (@Deplorable1619) April 12, 2022
There is nothing more pathetic yet delightfully just when see a bitter media hack not realize that what he once had and enjoyed is now an historical footnote. Chris Wallace, ossified relic and royally PO’d reject. Alas. https://t.co/kkRIv0vA3q
— 🇺🇸Lionel🇺🇸 (@LionelMedia) April 13, 2022
It’s wild how out of touch Chris Wallace is that he thought CNNplus would be a success
— LB (@beyondreasdoubt) April 13, 2022
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