Steve Friedman has turned over to James Bellows day-to-day management of the syndicated “USA Today: The Television Show.” Friedman says plans for the transition were announced Oct. 11 when he hired Bellows as the show’s managing editor. Friedman, executive producer of “USA Today,” also wears another hat--that of president of GTG East, the New York branch of ex-NBC chairman Grant Tinker’s GTG Entertainment, which produces the TV show. Friedman said Thursday he always intended to leave the show he created once it got going, and concentrate on other GTG projects. “My job was to launch this, get it going and to find the right person to turn it over to,” he said. The show, which had $40 million in start-up costs, is seen in 156 stations, including KCBS-TV in Los Angeles. It premiered Sept. 12 to bad reviews and has had lower-than-projected ratings. Friedman told the show’s staff Wednesday that Bellows--a veteran newspaperman credited with helping “Entertainment Tonight” through its infancy--will take charge of the show on a full-time basis, starting Monday. Friedman said he’ll be working in New York, but will talk with Bellows “three, four times a day” about the show, which is produced in Rossyln, Va.
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