the stupidest thing the cbs evening news with katie couric ever did occurred tonight


I’ll be brief.

Tonight, “The CBS Evening News with Katie Couric” changed the news program’s opening; the graphics were the same but the voice was different.

The network’s most celebrated anchor (even more than Edward R. Murrow) Walter Cronkite had introduced the network’s flagship broadcast since it began in September of 2006. It was a masterful piece of casting.

Tonight, CBS News President Sean McManus and Executive Producer Rick Kaplan used a new voice to introduce the program, actor Morgan Freeman.

Here is the audio for the new introduction.

Mr. Freeman did a passable job as an announcer and it’s said he’ll voice other CBS News programs as well, adding unity and flexibility to many CBS News broadcasts.

But Freeman is not Walter Cronkite whose voice upon that program bestowed a blessing and implied gravitas the likes of which cannot be measured by anything yet invented. No other network news program had or has anything like it. Suffice it to say Cronkite’s voice over on the program’s open was an invaluable asset.

McManus had indicated the program would lose Cronkite’s voice on the open in 2009 after the anchor man died but the Cronkite family allowed it to be used ever after, which (it was said at the time) made everyone happy at CBS News.

Evidently “everyone” lied.

The stupidest thing The CBS Evening News with Katie Couric ever did occurred tonight – it removed a pillar of broadcast journalism as the voice of the network’s primary news program and replaced it with someone else. It is not Freeman’s fault…no one could have replaced Cronkite’s perfect voice over.

No one should have.

17 Responses to “the stupidest thing the cbs evening news with katie couric ever did occurred tonight”

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Peter O'Connell and Elaine Singer, Elaine Singer. Elaine Singer said: RT @audioconnell: the stupidest thing the #cbs evening news with katie couric ever did occurred tonight […]

  2. Peter,

    So what do you really think?

    Be well,

  3. Hahaha Robert, you’re right, they done went and got my Irish up with this move! 🙂

    Best always,
    – Peter

  4. This might not comfort you much, Peter, but at least *I* can take comfort in knowing that Cronkite will forever voice that one spot for my beloved Longhorns. “We’re Texas. What starts here…changes the world.”

  5. David:

    Thank God for you memory and digital recordings otherwise these trinkets would be lost 🙂

    Do you have a link to the spot?

    Best always,
    – Peter

  6. Social comments and analytics for this post…

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  7. Peter!
    You’re IRISH???? 😉

  8. Morgan Freeman is an excellent narrator… announcer? not so much.

  9. Oh Man!! – you are absolutely right – and I second Dan Wright as well!! Too bad!! – Too Bad!!

  10. AND – I wasn’t aware … it was Mike Rowe…? (From – Shoptalk)

    “All three network broadcasts now have celebrities as their announcers,” TVNewser notes. “Michael Douglas began announcing ‘NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams’ on Dec. 17, 2007. And Mike Rowe, best known for hosting Discovery’s ‘Dirty Jobs’ debuted as the voice of ABC ‘World News with Diane Sawyer’ last month.”

  11. Just a wee bit, Liz

    Top O’ the morning to ya!
    – Payter

  12. I think its about what the client wanted, Dan.

    And the client may have been tone deaf~

    Best always,
    – Peter

  13. Hi Bobbi,

    Yup, you have spotted the trend…which is why I am calling the CBS announcing trend reactionary.

    I second you and call the vote. Bad!

    Best always,
    – Peter

  14. […] I was and am not in favor of the change. […]

  15. Peter,

    Here it is. There are several spots in this campaign, all voiced by Walter:

  16. David,

    Thank you very much, these were cool!

    Best always,
    – Peter

  17. […] afterwards and then decided against publishing it since my fellow VO-blogger Peter O’Connell already said it better than I could, and it was a hot topic on VO-BB and Voiceover Universe as […]