Roger King

Executive


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In his one-and-a-half hour Archive interview, Roger King (1944-2007) talks about his early years in television, including his position as general manager of Fort Lauderdale station WKID. He discusses the founding of the family business, syndication company "King World," by his father Charles King and his later association as an executive with the company. He talks about some of the first shows that King World syndicated and the transition to syndicating their own properties that started with the game show Wheel of Fortune. He details the continued success of the company with such popular programs as Jeopardy!, The Oprah Winfrey Show, and Dr. Phil. Additionally, he talks about the merger between King World and CBS and his subsequent role as CEO of CBS Enterprises. Karen Herman conducted the interview in Beverly Hills, California on April 20, 2004.

"I work very hard. I'm very demanding. I'm in the trenches with the guys just like they are. Some chairmen or presidents sit up in some ivory tower, but I'm in the ditch with them. I understand the mudslinging. I understand the difficulties."

Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early years and influences; on his father's company King World, which owned the rights the Hal Roach "Our Gang" shorts known as The Little Rascals on television; on his desire to go into his father's business, and on his father's business philosophy
On King World acquiring the rights to The Little Rascals , and on the controversy in their depiction of African-Americans; on the first time he saw television; on working in sales and on-air at local station WKID in Florida
On going to work at King World with his brother Michael King; on King World selling The Joker's Wild;
On getting the distribution rights to Wheel of Fortune from Merv Griffin, and selling the show; on acquiring the distribution rights to Jeopardy!, and on hiring Alex Trebek to host the show; on selling Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune at the same time, in tandem

Chapter 2

On the success and legacy of Jeopardy!; on the decision to take King World public; on distributing and selling The Oprah Winfrey Show
On creating and distributing Inside Edition; on creating and distributing The Roseanne Show starring Roseanne, and on how King World dealt with failure; on the King World merger with CBS/Viacom, and on working with Sumner M. Redstone to make the deal
On King World reviving, producing, and distributing The Hollywood Squares with Whoopi Goldberg as the center square, and on distributing Martha Stewart Living; on creating and distributing Dr. Phil, featuring Dr. Phil McGraw

Chapter 3

On working with Phil McGraw on Dr. Phil, and on the launch of the show; on the business of television syndication; on how the business of television syndication has changed since he started, and on the emergence of cable and the internet
On what was different about King World that led to its massive success; on career highlights, then-current projects, and continuing to work; on what attracts him to a project, and on his working style
On advice to an aspiring television executive; on the then-future of television, syndication, and King World; on how he'd like to be remembered
Shows

Dr. Phil

View Show Page
Roger King on creating and distributing Dr. Phil, featuring Dr. Phil McGraw
01:32
Roger King on working with Phil McGraw on Dr. Phil, and on the launch of the show
01:08

Hollywood Squares, The

View Show Page
Roger King on King World reviving, producing, and distributing The Hollywood Squares with Whoopi Goldberg as the center square, and on distributing Martha Stewart Living
01:33

Inside Edition

View Show Page
Roger King on creating and distributing Inside Edition
04:09

Jeopardy!

View Show Page
Roger King on acquiring the distribution rights to Jeopardy!, and on hiring Alex Trebek to host the show
01:53
Roger King on selling Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune at the same time, in tandem
00:54
Roger King on the success and legacy of Jeopardy!
01:27

Joker's Wild, The

View Show Page
Roger King on King World selling The Joker's Wild
04:15

Little Rascals, The

View Show Page
Roger King on his father's company King World, which owned the rights the Hal Roach "Our Gang" shorts known as The Little Rascals on television
01:11
Roger King on King World acquiring the rights to The Little Rascals , and on the controversy in their depiction of African-Americans
02:21

Martha Stewart Living

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Roger King on King World reviving, producing, and distributing The Hollywood Squares with Whoopi Goldberg as the center square, and on distributing Martha Stewart Living
01:33

Oprah Winfrey Show, The

View Show Page
Roger King on distributing and selling The Oprah Winfrey Show
05:04
Roger King on Oprah Winfrey's business acumen regarding The Oprah Winfrey Show
01:26
Roger King on the then-future of The Oprah Winfrey Show, and the initial difficulties King World had in selling it
02:17

Roseanne Show, The

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Roger King on creating and distributing The Roseanne Show starring Roseanne, and on how King World dealt with failure
04:59

Wheel of Fortune

View Show Page
Roger King on getting the distribution rights to Wheel of Fortune from Merv Griffin, and selling the show
04:06
Roger King on the success of the nighttime version of Wheel of Fortune, and how he sold the show
02:47
Roger King on selling Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune at the same time, in tandem
00:54
Topics

Advice

View Topic
Roger King on advice to an aspiring television executive
00:34

Media Consolidation

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Roger King on the King World merger with CBS/Viacom, and on working with Sumner M. Redstone to make the deal
05:00

New Media

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Roger King on how the business of television syndication has changed since he started, and on the emergence of cable and the internet
03:16

Television Industry

View Topic
Roger King on the King World merger with CBS/Viacom, and on working with Sumner M. Redstone to make the deal
05:00
Roger King on creating and distributing The Roseanne Show starring Roseanne, and on how King World dealt with failure
04:59
Roger King on how the business of television syndication has changed since he started, and on the emergence of cable and the internet
03:16
Roger King on the then-future of television, syndication, and King World
01:45
Roger King on advice to an aspiring television executive
00:34
Professions

Executives

View Profession
Roger King on his desire to go into his father's business, and on his father's business philosophy
01:35
Roger King on the decision to take King World public
00:42
Roger King on creating and distributing The Roseanne Show starring Roseanne, and on how King World dealt with failure
04:59
Roger King on the King World merger with CBS/Viacom, and on working with Sumner M. Redstone to make the deal
05:00
Roger King on what was different about King World that led to its massive success
01:41
Roger King on what attracts him to a project, and on his working style
02:29
Roger King on advice to an aspiring television executive
00:34
Roger King on the business of television syndication
04:12

Television Executive

View Profession
Roger King on his desire to go into his father's business, and on his father's business philosophy
01:35
Roger King on the decision to take King World public
00:42
Roger King on creating and distributing The Roseanne Show starring Roseanne, and on how King World dealt with failure
04:59
Roger King on the King World merger with CBS/Viacom, and on working with Sumner M. Redstone to make the deal
05:00
Roger King on what was different about King World that led to its massive success, and on working with his brother Michael King
01:41
Roger King on what attracts him to a project, and on his working style
02:29
Roger King on advice to an aspiring television executive
00:34
Roger King on the business of television syndication
04:12
Genres

Comedy Series

View Genre
Roger King on his father's company King World, which owned the rights the Hal Roach "Our Gang" shorts known as The Little Rascals on television
05:42

Game Shows

View Genre
Roger King and syndicating Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy!
09:42
Roger King on King World selling The Joker's Wild
04:15
Roger King on the success and legacy of Jeopardy!
01:27
Roger King on King World reviving, producing, and distributing The Hollywood Squares with Whoopi Goldberg as the center square, and on distributing Martha Stewart Living
06:33

News and Documentary

View Genre
Roger King on creating and distributing Inside Edition
04:09

Service Shows

View Genre
Roger King on King World reviving, producing, and distributing The Hollywood Squares with Whoopi Goldberg as the center square, and on distributing Martha Stewart Living
06:33

Talk Shows

View Genre
Roger King on distributing and selling The Oprah Winfrey Show
08:47
Roger King on creating and distributing The Roseanne Show starring Roseanne, and on how King World dealt with failure
04:59
Roger King on creating and distributing Dr. Phil, featuring Dr. Phil McGraw
01:32
Roger King on working with Phil McGraw on Dr. Phil, and on the launch of the show
01:08
People

Whoopi Goldberg

View Person Page
Roger King on King World reviving, producing, and distributing The Hollywood Squares with Whoopi Goldberg as the center square, and on distributing Martha Stewart Living
06:33

Merv Griffin

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Roger King on getting the distribution rights to Wheel of Fortune from Merv Griffin, and selling the show
04:06

Michael King

View Interview Page
Roger King on going to work at King World with his brother Michael King
02:16
Roger King on what was different about King World that led to its massive success, and on working with his brother Michael King
01:41

Phil McGraw

View Person Page
Roger King on creating and distributing Dr. Phil, featuring Dr. Phil McGraw
01:32

Sumner M. Redstone

View Interview Page
Roger King on the King World merger with CBS/Viacom, and on working with Sumner M. Redstone to make the deal
05:00

Roseanne

View Person Page
Roger King on creating and distributing The Roseanne Show starring Roseanne, and on how King World dealt with failure
04:59

Martha Stewart

View Person Page
Roger King on King World reviving, producing, and distributing The Hollywood Squares with Whoopi Goldberg as the center square, and on distributing Martha Stewart Living
06:33

Alex Trebek

View Interview Page
Roger King on acquiring the distribution rights to Jeopardy!, and on hiring Alex Trebek to host the show
01:53

Oprah Winfrey

View Person Page
Roger King on distributing and selling The Oprah Winfrey Show
05:04
Roger King on Oprah Winfrey's business acumen regarding The Oprah Winfrey Show
01:26
Roger King on Oprah Winfrey's business acumen regarding The Oprah Winfrey Show
02:17

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