I’m told that tonight MTV’s Tony DiSanto is still very busy denying to Hollywood that he is replacing Dawn Ostroff as head of The CW. I first heard from sources three weeks ago that Dawn was out, and Tony was in, following rounds of not-so-secret meetings with possible candidates for the network run jointly by Warner Bros and CBS. Then silence. The “explanation” making the rounds was that DiSanto, who’s been a very big deal at MTV for more than a decade, was still negotiating his CW deal. Well, DiSanto this week had a puff piece written about him where he said he isn’t leaving MTV. But today, this CW rumor went from a whisper to the talk of the town. So why? “Someone is really pushing this story hard,” says a CBS insider. “But I believe the person who told me it’s not happening.” And the bigtime TV power-players also think it’s smoke, not fire. Perhaps it’s karma that DiSanto (EVP of series, development and animation for MTV and head of programming for MTV2), has to work overtime to dispel the chatter. After all, this is the guy responsible for some of the most-talked-about swill on MTV, like Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County, Run’s House, The Hills, 8th and Ocean, The Andy Milonakis Show, and TRL with Carson Daly (thus foisting that no-talent on all of us…). Whereas Ostroff got her job by the skin of her teeth after programming as badly as she could at the old UPN and brown-nosing Les Moonves who was making a power-play move on Barry Meyer. Nevertheless Hollywood folk fail upwards: I’m told Dawn could end up running Oprah’s new cable network.
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