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Dan Rather returns to make some news



Published: Tue, October 31, 2006 @ 12:00 a.m.



The ex-anchor will be back with an hourlong weekly series.

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Some 19 months after his last "Evening News" for CBS, Dan Rather will return to the anchor desk Nov. 14 at 8 p.m. EST, when HDNet launches the new weekly series "Dan Rather Reports."

The show, anchored by Rather, will be seen in about 4 million homes receiving Mark Cuban's high-definition network.

"I'm as happy as I've been since maybe the day I was first able to make a living in journalism, which has been over 55 years ago, and since the first day I walked the halls of CBS News," Rather said.

Rather, who turns 75 today, said he's got three, perhaps four, hourlong shows ready to go when "Dan Rather Reports" starts. A decision on which show goes the first night will be made close to air time, he said.

Getting together

Rather linked with Cuban soon after leaving CBS News in June, ending a 44-year-run with the network. His departure came more than a year after he left the anchor desk at "CBS Evening News." (He said his travel schedule has limited the time he's been able to watch the CBS "Evening News With Katie Couric," to the point where he can't draw any conclusions about the show.)

"HDNet has given Dan Rather free rein to create a program that is built around his vision," Cuban said in a statement. "'Dan Rather Reports' will provide him with an extraordinary opportunity to report news that is not defined by corporate economics and that takes its cues from the stories themselves, not a preconceived structure."

Rather said the show will have three hallmarks. One will be to report on the soldiers fighting wars and not just show politicians talking about them. Another will be to look at the struggles of middle-income people. The third will be politics -- "with the bark off," as Rather puts it.

Since work began on the show, Rather said he's been on the road more than any time he can remember, short of covering the civil-rights movement and Vietnam.




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