news digest


CBS files to dismiss Rather suit

NEW YORK — CBS filed a motion Thursday to dismiss the $70 million lawsuit filed against it by Dan Rather, calling the former "CBS Evening News" anchor's claims bizarre and untrue. The 30-page motion seeks to dismiss Rather's lawsuit against CBS, former parent Viacom, CBS president and CEO Leslie Moonves, Viacom chairman Sumner Redstone and one-time CBS News president Andrew Heyward.

Retirement a fit for Cronkite

NEW YORK — Walter Cronkite, who in his heyday often was referred to as "the most trusted man in America," is returning to television, signing on as a regular contributor to the startup network Retirement Living TV. Beginning Tuesday, the former CBS anchor will contribute weekly editorial commentaries during the channel's two-hour noontime program, "Daily Cafe." Each of Cronkite's videotaped messages will run between seven and 10 minutes. The "Cronkite's Commentaries" segments will provide the veteran newsman a platform from which to offer his take on a host of issues ranging from politics to the environment.

CBS spearheads New York WiFi

NEW YORK — A bustling swath of Midtown Manhattan soon will have free wireless access thanks to an initiative led by CBS Corp. Through the wiring of billboards, Metropolitan Transit Authority displays and the offer of free routers to local businesses, the CBS Mobile Zone will provide free WiFi service through more than 20 city blocks extending from Times Square north to Central Park South and from Sixth Avenue west to Eighth Avenue.

'Runway' premiere looks good for Bravo

Bravo scored its most-watched season premiere ever in total viewers and the adults 18-49 demographic with its Season 4 bow of "Project Runway" at 10 p.m. Wednesday. The episode averaged 2.9 million total viewers (up 20% from the Season 3 premiere) and 2 million in 18-49 (up 24%). The episode was the most-watched cable program in its time slot among 18-49.

'Romulus' in Magnolia family

NEW YORK — Magnolia Pictures has acquired U.S. rights to the Australian family drama "Romulus, My Father" from Arclight Films. Eric Bana and Franka Potente play a Yugoslavian father and German mother trying to raise their son amid a troubled home life. Director Richard Roxburgh's film will hit TV screens before it hits theaters as part of the new HDNet Ultra Video On Demand platform, offering films for purchase up to three weeks before their theatrical release.

DirecTV moves to Nasdaq listing

NEW YORK — DirecTV Group will switch its stock market listing from the New York Stock Exchange to the Nasdaq Stock Market. The company said the move will allow for improved services and lower costs. The switch is effective Dec. 3. DirecTV is controlled by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp., but control is in the process of being transferred to John Malone's Liberty Media.

Truly Indie wins fight for 'Life'

NEW YORK — Truly Indie will handle the U.S. theatrical release of Terry Sanders' Iraq War doctors docu "Fighting for Life." The film, set for a March release, follows students at military medical school, doctors on the front lines and a female Army soldier who lost her leg in battle. The deal was negotiated by Sanders with Truly Indie's Kelly Sanders and Jason Janego.