Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav said CNN is renewing its focus on “journalism” — signaling he wants the scandal-scarred, left-leaning network to eventually deliver straight news that also appeals to conservatives.
The CEO, whose company owns CNN, Warner Bros., HBO, Animal Planet and TLC, told reporters at Allen & Co.’s “summer camp for billionaires” in Sun Valley, Idaho, that CNN’s new approach will pay off in the long term, even as ratings sink to historic lows.
“Journalism first. America needs a news network where everybody can come and be heard; Republicans, Democrats,” Zaslav said. “I think you’re seeing more of that at CNN. We’re not going to look at the ratings and, in the long run, it’s going to be worth more.”
Zaslav, who took the helm of Discovery and WarnerMedia after it merged to form Warner Bros. Discovery in April, hired Chris Licht as head of CNN, following the ouster of Jeff Zucker earlier this year. His mandate for Licht, a former executive producer of CBS’s “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” was to get rid of the sensational, partisan, Trump-focused coverage made popular under Zucker.