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Report: Jeff Zucker named new chief of CNN

President and chief executive of NBC Universal Jeff

President and chief executive of NBC Universal Jeff Zucker attends the 2010 NBC Upfront presentation at the Hilton Hotel in Manhattan. (May 17, 2010) Credit: Getty Images

Jeff Zucker, onetime boy wonder of NBC who helped make Katie Couric a star and became chief executive of NBCUniversal, has not-quite-yet been named the new chief executive of CNN, but it appears the only thing left is the press release.

The New York Times says the deal is done, and the LA Times indicates the same.

Zucker left as executive producer of his pal Couric's syndicated show -- widely interpreted as a move that would free him to knock out a deal with TimeWarner. He replaces Jim Walton, leaving by year's end. A Miami native, Zucker spent most of his career at NBC where he had a very strong run in news (most notably at "Today") but a controversial one in entertainment. Two words, "The Jay Leno Show." (OK, that's four words.) There were a few other missteps, but no need to pile on now. (That will probably come later, right Conan?)

Meanwhile, if Zucker is appointed , expect massive shakeups at CNN -- in a holding pattern for what seems like years now -  though stil very profitable and still one of the greatest brands in all of television. (There's a vast amount of talent at CNN, and one hopes Zucker, or whomever the new boss is, will recognize it. )

 More -- as we say in the trade -- to come...

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