Tribune Broadcasting is developing a television talk show with Premiere syndicated radio host Bill Cunningham that it will test on select Tribune stations including WGN Chicago this summer. If the tests go well, the station group will pick up the show, tentatively titled Willie, in January 2011 and shop it for national syndication for fall 2011. Cunningham’s weekly syndicated radio show, Live on Sunday Night, it’s Bill Cunningham is distributed by Clear Channel’s Premiere Radio Networks and has about 300 affiliate stations. He also hosts the daily The Big Show with Bill Cunningham, on 700 WLW Cincinnati.
The new television venture will stray a little from Cunningham’s radio shows focusing less on conservative politics and featuring opinionated guests talking about a range of subjects not necessarily political. Tribune says it will be in the “conflict talk” mode of other Tribune talk shows Jerry Springer, Maury and Steve Wilkos.