call_letters = KTLA
station_slogan = Where LA Lives
station_branding = KTLA 5 The CW
analog = 5 (VHF)
digital = 31 (UHF)
other_chs = (see article)
affiliations = The CW
January 22, 1947
Los Angeles, California
callsign_meaning = Television Los Angeles
licensee = KTLA, Inc.
former_affiliations = DuMont (1947-1948)
The WB (1995-2006)
effective_radiated_power = 44.7 kW (analog)
1000 kW (digital)
HAAT = 976 m (analog)
948 m (digital)
facility_id = 35670
coordinates = coord|34|13|35.2|N|118|3|57.9|W|type:landmark_scale:2000
homepage = [http://ktla.com/ ktla.com]
KTLA, channel 5, is a television station in
Los Angeles, California. Owned by the Tribune Company, KTLA is an affiliate of the CW Television Network. KTLA's studios are on Sunset Boulevardin Hollywood, and its transmitter is located atop Mount Wilson. The station's signal covers the Southern Californiaregion, and KTLA is also available as a regional superstationvia cable and satellite in the United States and Canada.
KTLA was the first commercially licensed television station in the western United States, having begun operations in 1947. [
KCBS-TVin Los Angeles originated in 1931 as W6XAO under an experimental license. It was commercially licensed in 1948.]
Originally owned by
Paramount Picturessubsidiary Television Productions, Inc., and located on the Paramount studio lot, the station was licensed by the Federal Communications Commissionin 1939 as experimental station W6XYZ, on channel 4, but did not go on the air until September 1942. Klaus Landsberg, already an accomplished television pioneer at the age of 26, was the original station manager and engineer. On January 22, 1947, it was licensed for commercial broadcast as KTLA on channel 5, becoming the first commercial television station to broadcast west of the Mississippi River. Estimates of television sets in the Los Angeles area at the time ranged from 350 to 600. Bob Hopeserved as the emcee for KTLA's inaugural broadcast, which was broadcast that evening from a garage on the Paramount Studios lot. The program, titled as the "Western Premiere of Commercial Television", featured appearances from many Hollywood luminaries. Hope delivered what was perhaps the most famous line of the evening when, at the program's start, he identified the new station as "KTL", mistakenly omitting the "A" at the end of the call sign.
KTLA originally carried programming from Paramount's partner, DuMont, but discontinued the practice after the 1947-48 season. Despite this, the FCC still considered KTLA and sister station, WBKB (now
WBBM-TV) in Chicago to be DuMont owned-and-operated stations because Paramount held a minority stake in DuMont. As a result, the agency would not allow DuMont to buy additional VHF stations -- a problem that would later play a large role in the failure of the DuMont network, whose programming was splintered among other Los Angeles stations until the network's demise in 1956. Paramount even launched a short-lived " Paramount Television Network" in 1949, with KTLA and WBKB as its flagship stations.White, Timothy R. (1992). [http://links.jstor.org/sici?sici=0009-7101(199221)31%3A3%3C19%3AHO(TAB%3E2.0.CO%3B2-8 "Hollywood on (Re)Trial: The American Broadcasting-United Paramount Merger Hearing"] "Cinema Journal", Vol. 31, No. 3. (Spring, 1992), pp. 19-36.] Jajkowski, Steve (2001). [http://www.chicagotelevision.com/Minutemen.htm "Advertising on Chicago Television"] . Chicago Television History. Retrieved January 10, 2007.] The programming service never gelled into a true television network.
In 1958, KTLA moved to the Paramount Sunset Studios on
Sunset Boulevardin Hollywood, originally the Warner Bros.Sunset Studios. For many years, those who have worked on Stage 6 at KTLA have been told that it was the site of filming Al Jolson's landmark film "The Jazz Singer" in 1927; Mark Evanier, who wrote for one such show in 1978, points out on his website that Stage 6 didn't even exist at the time "The Jazz Singer" was produced and the actual location used was probably what is now Stage 9. [ [http://www.oldtvtickets.com/archives1/2006/01/krofft_supersta.html Old TV Tickets ] ]
In 1964, KTLA was purchased by actor and singer
Gene Autryand merged with his other radio properties (including Los Angeles' KMPC) into an umbrella company, Golden West Broadcasters. From 1964 to 1995, the station was the broadcast television home of the Los Angeles/California Angels baseball team, which was also owned by Autry. KTLA carried selected Los Angeles Lakersgames from the early-to-mid 1970s. During the 1970s, KTLA became one of the nation's first superstations, and was eventually carried on cable systems across much of the country west of the Mississippi.
In the late 1960s and 1970s, KTLA sought a different programming strategy from the competition. It would emphasize syndicated reruns of off-network programs (with a heavy emphasis on western-themed programs such as "
The Gene Autry Show"), first-run talk shows, movies, and sports programming. Children's programming, with the exception of weekend morning " Popeye" cartoons, were also phased out. It also launched a 10 p.m. newscast in the mid-1960s, the simply-titled "News at Ten" (now "KTLA Prime News").
A Tribune Broadcasting station
In 1982, Golden West sold KTLA to investment firm
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.for $245 million. In 1985, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts sold KTLA to Tribune Broadcasting. Under Tribune, KTLA continued to acquire high rated off-network sitcoms as well as talk shows. In July 1991, KTLA added the first live, local morning newscast, the KTLA Morning News, to compete with major network morning shows. At first, the "KTLA Morning News" suffered from low ratings. However, the ability to cover breaking news live (as opposed to the network morning programs, which were aired on a three-hour tape delay) attracted more viewers to channel 5. As time went on, the "KTLA Morning News" has enjoyed great ratings success, generally ranking number one in its main 7-9 a.m. time period. The program's success spawned rival KTTVto launch its own local morning program, " Good Day L.A.", in 1993.
In March 1991, KTLA was the first station to air the infamous video of the
Rodney Kingbeating by Los Angeles police. From 1994 to 1995, the station aired gavel to gavel coverage of the O.J. Simpsontrial anchored by Marta Waller.
Also around 1995, KTLA introduced a midday newscast at noon, but was discontinued sometime in 1997.
The WB comes to KTLA
In January 1995, KTLA became a charter affiliate of
The WB Television Network, in which KTLA's parent company Tribune held a 25 percent ownership stake. That fall, KTLA added afternoon cartoons from " Kids' WB", entering the weekday children's television business for the first time in many years. KTLA also broadcasts the annual Tournament of Roses Paradefrom Pasadena as well. The station has aired the Rose Parade since 1948, and while other local stations also broadcast the parade over the years, KTLA remains the sole English-language outlet in the Los Angeles area to continuously broadcast the event. The station also served as host broadcaster of the Hollywood Christmas Parade, which was later syndicated to all Tribune-owned stations.
Tribune purchased the
Times-Mirror Company, parent company of the " Los Angeles Times", in 2000, bringing the "Times" into common ownership with channel 5. The "Times" had been the original owner of Los Angeles' Fox station, KTTV.
"Where L.A. Lives"
The station launched a new branding campaign in January 2005, which omitted all references to its channel 5 position (Although when rebranding as a CW affiliate, the channel 5 reference would return). It adopted a new logo, and became known on the air as "KTLA The WB: Where L.A. Lives." The new look also featured a brand new black and orange color scheme for news broadcasts and other functions of the network.
January 24, 2006, the Warner Bros. Televisionunit of Time Warnerand CBSannounced it would be merging the operations of its WB and UPNnetworks into a joint-venture, The CW Television Network. KTLA became the Los Angeles affiliate of the new network. The channel station rebranded itself as "KTLA 5 The CW" on September 18, 2006.
Today, KTLA is a typical CW affiliate running the usual blend of syndicated shows, first-run prime time programming from The CW, early morning and evening newscasts, and sports. KTLA is the over-the-air home of the
Los Angeles Clippers; the station carried Clippers games from 1985 to 1991, and picked them up again in 2002 and was also the TV home of the Los Angeles Dodgersfrom 1993 to 2001. Although not as wide-spread in national carriage as its Chicagosister station, WGN-TV, KTLA is available via satellite as a superstation, throughout North America on Ku-band, C-band, and Dish Networksystems, as well as on cable systems in selected cities throughout the Southwestern part of the United Statesand in Canadanationwide.
KTLA offers around 30 hours per week of local news, and its 10 p.m. newscast was the most-watched for decades until KTTV took the top spot consistently since 2000 Fact|date=February 2007. The "KTLA Morning Show" is the number two-rated local morning show, behind "Good Day L.A."
KTLA's facility is also home to Sunset Bronson Studios (formerly Tribune Studios), where shows like "Greed", Fox's "Celebrity Boxing" specials, "
WKRP in Cincinnati", " Judge Judy", " Hannah Montana", "Solid Gold", " Name That Tune", " Family Feud", " Win Ben Stein's Money, "Lingo", " The Newlywed Game", " MADtv" and " Judge Joe Brown" have been produced over the years. With its location, KTLA and PBSmember station KCETare currently the only Los Angeles area broadcasters based in Hollywood. On February 14, 2008, Tribune Company announced the sale of Tribune Studios and related real estate in Los Angeles to Hudson Capital LLC for $125 million. [ [http://www.entrepreneur.com/localnews/1585427.html Tribune sells L.A.'s Tribune Studios, will buy real estate from Chandler family - Los Angeles Business from bizjournals ] ]
While KTLA and
KCETare the only broadcasters from Hollywood, there has been speculation that KTLA might move into the Los Angeles TimesHeadquarters in Downtown Los Angelesintegrating their operations with their newspaper counterpart.
January 13, 2007, KTLA began broadcasting its newscasts in High Definition, becoming the second Los Angeles television station to do so.
January 22, 2007, KTLA celebrated its 60th anniversary of continuous broadcasting in Los Angeles. Two days later, on January 24, 2007, KTLA was given a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, becoming the first television station or network to receive such an honor. In addition to the station itself, six other individuals associated with the station -- former owner Gene Autry, reporters Stan Chambersand Larry McCormick, news anchors Hal Fishmanand George Putnam, and KTLA founder Klaus Landsberg -- have received stars on the Walk of Fame.
In addition, KTLA continued its celebration on the weekend after
Thanksgivingby airing a 60-hour marathon of classic shows that aired on KTLA in the past. KTLA also aired retrospectives of historic Los Angeles news stories during its weekend newscasts. [ [http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117976419.html?categoryid=14&cs=1 "KTLA plans retro holiday weekend"] , Variety, November 21, 2007.] However, the retro news segments were canceled on November 24 due to extensive coverage of the Corral Canyon firein Malibu, California.
KTLA is rebroadcast on the following translator stations:
* [http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=K40HX K40HX] Morongo Valley
* [http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=K35BQ K35BQ] Daggett
* [http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=K03EK K03EK] Newberry Springs
* [http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=K16FI K16FI] Twentynine Palms
* [http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=K29GK K29GK] Twentynine Palms
* [http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=K48AD K48AD] Lucerne Valley
* [http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=K05FO K05FO] Ridgecrest
* [http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=K39HT-D K39HT-D] Ridgecrest
* [http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=K58GH K58GH]
* [http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=K29GO K29GO]
* [http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=K32EX K32EX]
In popular culture
KTLA gained a bit of notoriety among fans of the television show "
Mystery Science Theater 3000" on November 30, 1991with the airing of their mockery of the movie " War of the Colossal Beast". In the movie, there are scenes of a KTLA news anchor predicting where the title character Glen Manning will end up next. That anchor is the real KTLA reporter Stan Chambers, with the station since the beginning and still reporting daily from the field ( as of 2008). The anchor ends up pronouncing the station's call letters as "KIT-lah". In a skit segment later in the show, Joel Robinson, portrayed by Joel Hodgson, mocks the anchor's "KTLA Predicts" style of newsreading and parodies Criswell. The phrase "KTLA Predicts" became a catchphrase among fans of the show.
During the 1950s, while Paramount owned the station, that company was also producing "
Popeye" cartoons. In one episode, Popeye's nephews turn on their television to "chanel number 5" (not the perfume, but channel 5 – KTLA).
KTLA has also been featured in other media (usually with its newscasts). Hal Fishman was featured reporting for "Channel 5 News at Ten" in the movie "
Malibu's Most Wanted". In one scene in the 2002movie "Showtime", the KTLA SkyCam 5 (now called the KTLA HD Telecopter) was seen among a group of helicopterssurrounding the Bonaventure Hotelin Downtown Los Angeles.
The CW Television Network
* [http://ktla.com/ KTLA Website]
* [http://www.metnews.com/articles/reminiscing091902.htm Look Out, W6XAO, Here Comes Paramount] Metropolitan News-Enterprise column on KTLA when it broadcast as experimental TV station W6XYZ, taking on the sole existing experimental station in L.A. (now KCBS).
* [http://www.metnews.com/articles/reminiscing092602.htm A Tale of Two Stations] Metropolitan News-Enterprise column on operations in the 1940s of the stations that are now KTLA, Channel 5 (then W6XYZ, Channel 4) and KCBS, Channel 2 (then W6XAO, Channel 1)
* [http://www.tech-notes.tv/2005/05-Los_Angeles.htm KTLA archived television icons, 1942-1972]
* [http://members.fortunecity.com/tvnetworks/misc/ KTLA logos and screenshots from 1950s to the present day]
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