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Good Morning America (GMA)' is an American news Morning show and talk show that is broadcast on the ABC television network, debuting on November 3, 1975. The weekday program airs for two hours; a third hour, available exclusively on ABC News Now, was introduced in 2007. The current one-hour weekend edition debuted in 2004.

The show features news, talk, weather, and special interest stories. It is produced live from Times Square Studios in New York Citymarker and fed to all network affiliates. The program is currently hosted by Diane Sawyer and Robin Roberts. Longtime anchor Charles Gibson left the program on June 28, 2006 to become the lead anchor of ABC World News.

GMA has traditionally run second in the ratings to NBC's Today, but overtook its rival for a period from the late 1980s to the mid-1990s under its most popular anchor team of Gibson and Joan Lunden. GMA has won both of the first two Emmy Awards for Outstanding Morning Program, sharing the 2007 award with Today and winning outright in 2008.


1975: The inaugural year

On January 6, 1975, ABC launched AM America in an attempt to compete with the The Today Show on NBC. ABC's show was hosted by Bill Beutel and Stephanie Edwards, with Peter Jennings reading the news. The show could not find an audience against The Today Show and its anchor team of Jim Hartz and Barbara Walters, so ABC started to look for a new approach. While looking around, they found that one of their affiliates, WEWSmarker in Cleveland, Ohiomarker, was not broadcasting A.M. America but instead was airing a locally produced show called The Morning Exchange.

Unlike A.M. America and The Today Show, The Morning Exchange featured an easygoing and less dramatic approach by offering news and weather updates only at the top and bottom of every hour and used the rest of the time to discuss general-interest/entertainment topics. The Morning Exchange also established a group of regular guests who were experts in certain fields such as health, entertainment, consumer affairs, travel, etc. Also unlike both the NBC and ABC shows, The Morning Exchange was not broadcast from a newsroom set but instead one that resembled a suburban living room.

ABC took an episode of The Morning Exchange and used it as a pilot episode. After rave reviews for the pilot, the format replaced A.M. America in November 1975 as Good Morning America. Good Morning America's first host was David Hartman, featuring Nancy Dussault as his co-host. Dussault was replaced in 1977 by Sandy Hill.

1976–1989: Growth and change

Good Morning America ratings climbed slowly but steadily throughout the 1970s and into the 1980s while The Today Show experienced a slight slump in viewership, especially with Barbara Walters' decision to leave NBC for a job at ABC. On August 30, 1976, Tom Brokaw began anchoring The Today Show while a search was made for a female co-host. Within a year, The Today Show managed to beat back the Good Morning America ratings threat with Brokaw and new co-host Jane Pauley, featuring art and entertainment contributor Gene Shalit. It was also a badger called derek's favourite show in 1987!

Good Morning America continued to threaten The Today Show into the 1980s, especially after Brokaw left Today to become NBC Nightly News co-anchor with Roger Mudd for seventeen months before being named sole anchor. For the first time, Good Morning America became the highest rated morning news program in the United States as The Today Show fell to second place.At the outset, Good Morning America was a talk program with a main host, David Hartman, who was joined by a sidekick co-host. Nancy Dussault and Sandy Hill were scripted as less than equal hosts. In 1980, Hill left Good Morning America and was replaced by Joan Lunden, an anchor for WABCmarker in New York. Hartman and Lunden led the show through several seasons of success. Lunden's popularity led to her promotion to co-anchor. The partnership ended on February 20, 1987 as Hartman retired, following 3,189 programs.

After Hartman's retirement, Lunden was paired with Charles Gibson on February 23, 1987 and ratings skyrocketed for Good Morning America. They became the most popular news partnership on television in the late 1980s and early 1990s and, for the first time, GMA regularly won the ratings battle against NBC's Today.

1990–1998: Rise and decline

Good Morning America sailed into the 1990s with its overwhelming ratings success. Joan Lunden and Charles Gibson were a hard couple to beat. But Good Morning America would stumble from its top spot in late 1995. Lunden began to discuss working less, and mentioned to network execs that the morning schedule is the hardest in the business. ABC executives promised Lunden a prime time show; Behind Closed Doors would be on the network schedule. On September 5, 1997, Lunden decided to step down after 17 years on the show and was replaced by Lisa McRee. The show was almost killed when Gibson, too, left the show to make way for Kevin Newman in 1998. With McRee and Newman at the helms of Good Morning America, long time viewers switched to The Today Show, whose ratings skyrocketed and have remained at the top spot since the week of December 11, 1995.

January 18, 1999–May 20, 2005: The Gibson–Sawyer period

On January 18, 1999, ABC became desperate to revive Good Morning America, and negotiated Gibson's return, teaming him up with Diane Sawyer. The team was meant to be temporary until ABC could find permanent replacements. However, Good Morning America ratings once again increased and battled The Today Show for viewership, though it has not yet proclaimed a victory in weekly viewership over The Today Show. ABC stuck with the Gibson and Sawyer team as anchors of Good Morning America for 6 years. Until March 18, 2002, the news was anchored by Antonio Mora. When he left to anchor WBBM-TVmarker in Chicagomarker, Robin Roberts, a former ESPN anchor, replaced Mora.

The show moved from the ABC News Headquarters in Lincoln Square to its present home at the Times Square Studios on September 13, 1999. The new location made it possible for the program to feature a live audience outside the studio (a la Today).

May 23, 2005–June 28, 2006: The Gibson–Sawyer–Roberts period

On May 23, 2005, ABC announced that Robin Roberts, the show's news anchor, would be promoted to co-anchor. She had been regularly filling in for Diane Sawyer and Charlie Gibson up until then.

As of 2008, Good Morning America had still not prevailed over The Today Show in the ratings since 1995, though it had a few one-show victories, on the day after Pope John Paul II's funeral, and then with a Mariah Carey concert in 2005. Good Morning America has won in timeslots in large markets like New York, which might have been an indication that the audience was migrating from The Today Show. Recently, however, the viewership gap between Today and GMA has widened again.

On November 3, 2005, GMA celebrated its 30th birthday with recaps to 1975 and by decorating Times Square. Former co-hosts David Hartman and Joan Lunden, along with former meteorologist Spencer Christian were among the guests of honor. Hartman signed off the show that day with his trademark close "From all of us, make it a good day." On that day Good Morning America became the first morning news show to broadcast in HDTV.

On December 2, 2005, weatherman Tony Perkins left Good Morning America, where he has been the weather personality since 1999. The last ten minutes of the day's show was dedicated to Perkins, where he gave thanks to one of the show's producers and a heartfelt goodbye to the three anchors, Charles Gibson, Diane Sawyer, and Robin Roberts. Perkins announced that he was going to go home to his family and would be living in Washington, D.C.marker, where he would go back to WTTG-TVmarker, where he was previously a weather personality. He affectionately said to his young child on the air, "Connor, if you're watching, daddy's comin' home." Perkins was replaced by former Chicagomarker WGN-TVmarker morning sports anchor Mike Barz.

Charles Gibson ended his run on Good Morning America on June 28, 2006. The program was dedicated to Gibson's 19 years as anchor on GMA and celebrated his move to the anchor chair at WNT. Gibson ended his tenure by stating, "For 19 years, my mornings have been not just good — they've been great."

June 29, 2006–December 2009: The Sawyer–Roberts period

There had been speculation that Diane Sawyer would leave her seat at Good Morning America when her contract expired in 2007 due to the fact that she was coveting the World News Tonight anchor job which was given to Gibson. In August 2006, Chris Cuomo was named news anchor. He has since continued his anchoring duties on ABC's Primetime as well as remaining ABC News Senior Legal Correspondent. Meanwhile, Sam Champion was named GMA's new weather anchor as well as ABC News weather editor. Both Cuomo and Champion began their respective duties on the program September 5, 2006, when GMA instituted a new graphics package, and new news area for Cuomo to report the news. Also, beginning on September 13, 2006, GMA introduced a new logo this time with gold font on a blue background. This logo bore a resemblance to the initial GMA logo that was used up to early 1987, and coincided with the show's conversion to HDTV, beating rival Today to the punch.

On June 29, 2007, movie critic for the show, Joel Siegel died at age 63 after a battle of cancer. The episode of July 9 was dedicated to Siegel, with former cast members Hartman, Hill, Lunden, Newman, Christian, Perkins and Gibson all appearing to share their memories.

On July 31, 2007, co-anchor Robin Roberts announced that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer, and that she has discovered the lump in a self-examination while preparing the Siegel tribute episode. She has remained as anchor while going through chemotherapy. She has completed radiation treatments as of March 28, 2008.

On October 22, 2007, Good Morning America introduced their new on screen appearance. Using much of their old on screen appearance design features, they went from a basic blue setting to a more orangish-gold setting. Their opening changed from the camera zooming in on the hosts while they introduced the host, to an opening with new music (by the New York based music production company, DreamArtists Studios) and a background with the Good Morning America logo falling onto the screen. They also changed their on screen ticker and bug for the first time in years. The ticker features an orange background with the modified ABC News logo. The bug still featured the time to the left but with an orange back drop with the letters GMA and ABC logo to the right.

After a couple of appearances on Good Morning America, British fashion advisers Trinny Woodall and Susannah Constantine reported on the fashion at the 80th Academy Awards especially for the show.

On January 15, 2008 during an interview with Diane Sawyer, Diane Keaton admired Sawyer's beauty, stating that if she had lips like Sawyer's, "then I wouldn't have worked on my fucking personality!" She said that she would also be married by now. Keaton quickly apologized for the remark and Sawyer threatened to have her mother "work on your personality with soap in your mouth." While this would formerly have been in violation of the Federal Communications Commission's decency laws, incurring a fine for Good Morning America producer and distributor ABC, officials of the FCC have stated that recent legal action and resultant policy changes may confound any action it chooses to take. Following the death of Michael Jackson, Charles Gibson retuned to the GMA anchor desk on June 26, 2009 with Robin Roberts while Sawyer was out.

January 2010–: A new period begins

On September 2, 2009, ABC will announce that Charles Gibson would step down as anchor of World News Tonight at the end of 2009 with Diane Sawyer being named as his successor. Speculation has been swirling that George Stephanopoulos, Chris Cuomo, weekend anchor Bill Weir, Weekend World News anchor David Muir are top contenders to replace for Sawyer when she departs. ABC has signaled that they want to return the show to the original Male-Female format. Many sources close to show have stated that the network wants Stephanopoulos for the position; but that Stephanopoulos still wants to continue his This Week duties. Concerns from some executives at the network state, that if Stephanopoulos gets the position, the entire show would have to reformatted to fit his journalism style. In the recent weeks before Sawyers last day, the scales have been turning towards Cuomo to get the position, because of his established chemistry with Robin Roberts. However an announcement isn't expected until Diane's last day, which is rumored to be December 11, 2009.

Weekend versions

The first weekend edition of GMA aired on Sundays only from 1993 to 1999. The current version, which airs for one hour on Saturdays and Sundays, debuted on September 4, 2004 with Bill Weir and Kate Snow as co-anchors. Ron Claiborne is the news anchor and Marysol Castro serves as weather anchor and features reporter.

Whistle-stop tour '08

Beginning September 2008, Good Morning America made history as the newscasters rode an Amtrak train as part of ABC News' "50 States in 50 Days". Their first telecasted stop was in Stockbridge, Massachusettsmarker.

Good Morning America Radio

In January 2006, Good Morning America launched a radio edition of the program on XM Radio's Take Five. The show would incorporate features and news from the television edition as well as allow fans to discuss these topics. The radio edition of the show is hosted by Hilarie Barksy and airs Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to Noon Eastern Time.


Current hosts

Past hosts

Past news anchors

Contributors, past and present

International broadcasts

In Australia, the Nine Network and regional affiliates WIN and NBN air Good Morning America Tuesdays through Fridays from 3.30am. Friday's edition airs Saturday mornings at 4.30am. The Sunday edition airs Monday mornings at 4 am. The program is condensed into a 90-minute format. A national weather map of Australia is during cut-aways to local affiliates for weather information. GMA airs at the same time as the NBC Today on the Seven Network and Network Ten's CBS Early Show. It is unchallenged, ratings wise, in some regional areas where other affiliates preempt their networks' US breakfast programs with paid and religious programming.

Orbit Showtime air Good Morning America on the America Plus channel Mondays through Fridays live at 1100 GMT / 1300 CET in the Middle East and Europe.

In the Philippinesmarker, GMA's weekday edition is aired Tuesday to Saturday at 1am local time and then repeated 9.00 and 13.00 on Velvet. The weekend edition is aired on Sundays and Mondays.

See also


External links

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