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CAPRA MAKES IT ALL BETTER

Mediaset wants Italians thinking happy thoughts. The broadcast giant said Thursday that the nation's economic woes can be helped by a good dose of old-fashioned, optimistic films. "Today we need stories in the Frank Capra style, stories that foster optimism," Mediaset president Fedele Confalonieri told parliament, referring to the Oscar- winning director of "It's a Wonderful Life."

ELECTION HOT SPOTS

ABC News will broadcast from its Times Square studios on Election Night, incorporating the "crossroads of the world" setting into its coverage as well as blasting video and electronic ticker results of voting to passersby. NBC News will set up shop in another landmark, Rockefeller Plaza, using electronic signs of its own for results as well as coloring the skating rink red and blue depending on how states vote. For the full report, go to THR.com/election.

MORE 'CHELSEA'

E! Entertainment has renewed its late-night comedy talk show "Chelsea Lately" through 2009. The show, which features Chelsea Handler, debuted in July 2007 and airs at 11:30 p.m. weeknights. E! said its household ratings were up 21% in the third quarter compared with a year ago.
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