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Chicago's ABC Station Braces For Loss of Oprah, AMC and OLTL; Recalls How Frons Destroyed At The Movies

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ABC’s decision to cancel All My Children and One Life to Live isn’t just impacting fans.  According to the Chicago Tribune, WLS-Ch 7 has been the city’s most watched news operation since the 1980s, but with The Oprah Winfrey Show ending in May and AMC and OLTL canceled, the station is being forced to adapt to its new reality. However, it is taking the upheaval in stride.

"I'm not sure this is any bigger than some of the other challenges we've faced, certainly if you look at my tenure here," said Emily Barr, who this month marks her 14th anniversary as WLS' president and general manager. "We had to make changes early on when I first got here. The whole anchor team changed. Think about that."

The article then goes on to point out one of Brian Frons’ other blunders.

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Some might recall it was Frons who, in the announcement of Disney's 2008 "At the Movies" divorce from the film critics Chicago Sun-Times' Roger Ebert and Richard Roeper, said that "with the addition of Ben Lyons and Ben Mankiewicz as our talented, charismatic new co-hosts, and exciting new segments planned, we're confident that audiences will be enjoying 'At the Movies' for many years to come."

Lyons and Mankiewicz were canned a year later. Disney's syndicated version of "At the Movies" was axed the year after that.