Celebrating 30 years on the air in 2014, “Cityline,” one of the longest running daytime lifestyle series in TV history, will be expanding its national audience this fall through syndication courtesy of distributor PPI Releasing. Stations can acquire the one-hour hybrid of talk and lifestyle on an all-cash, no barter basis with 200 episodes (and 40-weeks of originals) available in this inaugural season in syndication.
Affiliates, to-date, from the Hearst, Raycom, Graham Media, Weigel and Lockwood station groups have made initial commitments to clear “Cityline.”
“What you have in ‘Cityline’ is an established daytime program produced in the same style that the national audience is used to,” said media consultant Bill Carroll. “What is already a proven success and a long-time staple in Toronto will now be a fresh alternative to the syndication audience.”
“In a daytime environment, having a known success with this kind of brand, I do not think “Cityline” will have any difficulty fitting in,” he added.
Hosted by Tracy Moore since 2008, and themed to an individual subject matter each day, “Cityline” features a rotation of guest experts discussing topics including health and beauty, fashion, food, entertaining, home design and gardening. Originally launched on Feb. 20, 1984, “Cityline,” now in season 33, offers a “safe haven” to the targeted female viewers looking to be informed and entertained from the voice of a host they can all trust and relate to.
“In syndication ’Cityline’ offers value, stability and a proven track record,” said PPI principal Ritch Colbert in a statement. “For a rapidly evolving broadcast industry, this is a new, promising model. But what truly makes the show soar is our incredibly authentic, inspiring host, Tracy Moore.”
“I am still in the honeymoon mode with this show and it has been nine years,” said an enthusiastic Tracy Moore, who describes herself as a “newsgirl” and had plans to be the next Diane Sawyer hosting a serious newsmagazine. “ABC News actually offered me a job as a news correspondent in their London bureau in the U.K. But when that fell through, I got pregnant and the news director on a morning show I was working on told me that ‘Cityline’ was looking for a new host.”
“While I still had a complete tunnel vision for serious news, the more auditions I did for ‘Cityline’, the more I felt this would be a very good fit for the place I was in my life at that time,” she added. “We had just bought our first house, we were trying to make meals every day, and I was trying to figure out how I could look good in my post-baby body on a budget. All of these things are what ‘Cityline’ is all about. These are all very relatable topics, which is why so many viewers, for so many years, tune in on a regular basis.”
The Programming Insider had a chance to speak to Tracy Moore about her experience as host of “Cityline.”
“How exactly would you describe the concept of “Cityline”?
“It has talk show elements but is not your traditional talk show, which is what sets ‘Cityline’ apart from the rest. You take something away from each segment, and every segment is sort of a learning opportunity. Each day of the week is themed. Mondays is called ‘Around the House,’ and that can be anything from getting stuff done, to gardening and to cooking. Tuesdays is a series of specials, where we might feature makeovers or chefs preparing great meals. Wednesdays are health and family; those are the days that people can come to the show with their babies and we address topics under the guise of fitness and health. Thursday is décor; we call it ‘Home Day.’ And Fridays are always themed to fashion. We call it ‘Fashion Fridays.’ We have fashion shows and make-overs, we talk beauty, we talk hair and much more. Every day offers something unique.”
“What makes “Cityline” different from other daytime daily first-run hours targeted to women on the air now?”
“We have a list of list of experts who come on the show, which distinguishes ‘Cityline’ from anything airing at present. And these people are regulars. Our viewers are familiar with these experts, which makes it a comfortable fit. And I would describe as a mixture; like a combination of “The View” and “Good Morning America” and the “Today” show. We are like a whole bunch of shows in one, and our viewers know exactly what to expect each day.
‘Cityline’ is a show about content you can do all day and night. We have it nailed down. But what I love about the show is the connection. There is an intense connection between myself and any of the experts on the show that feels like you are watching friends hanging out and just talking about various topics.”
“Are you in the field at all? Do you do any outside segments or reporting?”
“Yes, we do on occasion. Recently, for example, we filmed in Las Vegas where the theme of the show was having quality time with your girlfriends. The audience was populated with all real-life girlfriends and we just went to town.”
“Would you say “Cityline” offers a variety of celebrities and everyday people?”
“Absolutely…we do get a variety of celebrities on the show when they are in town doing the rounds. It is not our main bread and butter, but these personalities certainly add to the show. Just last week we had Bobby Brown, the makeup mogul, on the show. We have had Shania Twain and Jessica Alba; guests that are going to resonate with our viewers. And we have powerful women that have done amazing things in business and in their personal lives.”
“What is your favorite part of the show?”
“Without a doubt it is the live audience, the people who come from all different areas and are excited and can’t wait to have the time of their lives. It is the viewers who make this show. They give me energy in the studio and I love connecting with them. I am there when they come in the door. We chat, we take pictures and the connection with them is the ultimate theme of ‘Cityline.’ We inform, we entertain and what we offer is an hour each weekday as a destination to relax, enjoy and also be educated about subjects that matter to any typical women.
We are going behind some of the superficiality on television and really delving into topics that we know our target audience is interested in,” she added. “We have done shows where we talk about infertility; we talk about the truth behind cosmetic surgery and postpartum depression, our insecurities, and so much more. We have even done shows where none of us wear any makeup. ‘Cityline’ has no boundaries, and we rely heavily on social media to listen to our audience and hear what it is they want.”
These are universal subjects that resonate with our viewers, and I am certain will strike a chord with the syndication audience,” she added. “And we are all excited for this golden opportunity.”
For more information on “Cityline,” contact Ritch Colbert at 323/850-5858 or Josh Raphaelson at 310/963-4565.