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Tell Me a Story: Fifty Years and 60 Minutes in Television Paperback – October 1, 2002
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In chatty, colloquial prose, Hewitt hits the show's high and low points, including a frank discussion of the compromises made to air an interview with Big Tobacco whistle-blower Jeffrey Wigand and a blistering critique of the way those compromises were depicted in the movie The Insider. He pays warm tribute to his reporters, particularly Mike Wallace, writes appreciatively of CBS founder William Paley, and candidly discusses his differences with Paley's successor, Laurence Tisch. Hewitt doesn't pretend to be a saint; he accepts the mingled imperatives of journalism and commerce that drive TV news without (usually) sounding too defensive. His memoir pungently chronicles the evolution of broadcast journalism and expresses faith in the idealism that still fires the men and women who practice it. --Wendy Smith --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
This book reads like a timeline of Hewitt's life -- and then this happened ... and then this happened -- which doesn't allow for much drama-building. A pioneer of the TV news business certainly has a wealth of content for a book, but as is often the case with autobiographies, the story would have been better told by a veteran book writer.
Some insights are valuable -- behind-the-scenes adcedotes about former President LBJ, his thoughts on the validity of the movie The Insider, his take on the 2000 Presidential election. But I found those nuggets to be too few and far between. The rest reads like a chat transcript.
If you buy this book, I hope you do enjoy it.
He began in television news back when the Murrows and the Cronkites wouldn't have considered leaving radio. He produced the only Kennedy-Nixon debate and is convinced that not wearing makeup on TV cost Nixon the election. He didn't really care for Nixon much post Watergate, but unlike most of the newsmen of his generation, he didn't really fall for the aura of John Kennedy either.
Hewitt tells of how he convinced Frank Sinatra to sit down with Walter Cronkite in the mid 1960s, and how Sinatra blew up when questioned about his mob ties. Luckily for Hewitt he was around long enough to outlive Sinatra and get the real story from his daughter Tina 30 years later. The story gives more plausibility to the Kennedy assassination being a mob hit.
The latter half of the book focuses on Bill Clinton's infamous interview during the 1992 election and how Hewitt's treatment of James Carville got the show barred from the White House.
Near the end he goes in to a deep explanation of Lowell Bergman and the inaccuracies of the film THE INSIDER. After explaining for pages and pages of how Bergman is disingenuous, he catches us off guard by saying that he would have forgiven the filmmakers everything had they cast Robert Redford in his role. Philip Baker Hall isn't an actor, that's a dormitory, Hewitt jokes.
Hewitt is an interesting guy with a great life and it's hard not to like this book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
What a great story of the development of news television and 60 minutes told by the guy who lived through it all! Highly recommended!Published 10 months ago by Brad A
Good book he should had got rid of ed Bradley and Andy rooneyPublished 15 months ago by Michael Larthey
I'm still reading this book. So far I think it is pretty great. I can't wait to finish reading it.Published on October 31, 2013 by Beatrice
I bought this book to give as a gift, so I picked a more expensive option because it said "new". I could have picked a copy that cost a dollar if I'd wanted a used version. Read morePublished on February 24, 2011 by dustynightswood
Excellent book, so well written you can not put it down. What an incredible life this man had.Published on October 3, 2009 by AJK
Great book by a great guy. From Murrow to pre-Couric, he was CBS News. 60 Minutes ia an ok show, too.Published on January 16, 2008 by Tim Whitmore
I am in Hewitt's business myself (in another part of the world). His book and his experiences give me a lot to think about.Published on March 14, 2006 by Jan Mosander
Ok, so he isn't a writing genius, but he KNOWS television and how to keep a quality broadcast show on top. Read morePublished on July 22, 2004 by Broncos Fan
I expected of Don Hewitt's book something on par, at least professionally, with "60 Minutes"; not so with "Tell Me A Story. Read morePublished on November 23, 2002 by Alana