Layoffs hit A&E Nets, ReelzChannel

AETN loses 20; ReelzChannel cuts more than 40

A&E Television Networks and ReelzChannel have become the latest in a slew of media companies to hand out pinkslips this month.

AETN, which includes A&E Network, History and Biography Channel, has laid off 20 staffers, including full-time employees in the digital-media division and a number of freelancers. AETN's total work force includes about 650 employees across its cable networks.

ReelzChannel, meanwhile, has laid off 40-plus employees, mostly because network execs have decided to reformat the weekday movie-news show "Dailies" into roughly three-minute segments, tentatively titled "ReelzChannel Movie News," that will air at least once an hour seven days a week, starting in January. ReelzChannel programs 20 hours a day.

"Dailies" will continue running in half-hour installments Monday-Thursday and hourlong episodes Friday probably through the first week of January, ReelzChannel president/COO Gary Thorne said. "Dailies" exec producer Clif H. Dunn will exec produce the new segments.

"This was more consumer-driven than anything else," Thorne said. "News is attainable everywhere by the consumer, and we wanted to make it more current and more topical."

Thorne said an announcement about the network's new schedule will likely be made next week.

ReelzChannel still has about 125 people employed in its downtown Los Angeles offices.