Cuomo Prime Time

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Cuomo Prime Time
GenreNews program
Presented byChris Cuomo
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
Executive producerMelanie Buck[1]
Production locations30 Hudson Yards
New York City
Camera setupMulti-camera
Running time60 minutes
Original networkCNN
Picture format1080i (16:9 HDTV)
Original releaseAugust 28, 2017 – August 31, 2017 (1 week)[2]
January 9, 2018 – February 1, 2018 (1 month)[3]
June 4, 2018 – present
Related showsErin Burnett OutFront
Anderson Cooper 360°
CNN Tonight
External links

Cuomo Prime Time is a news analysis show on CNN and CNN International, presented by CNN journalist and news anchor, Chris Cuomo.

The show currently airs weeknights live from 9:00 pm to 10:00 pm ET, with a replay at 1:00 am to 2:00 am ET, originally from Time Warner Center in New York City, and since late 2019 from its new studios at Time Warner's new base at 30 Hudson Yards, also in New York City. A few editions are also broadcast from CNN's studios in Washington, D.C.


On the opening night, Cuomo interviewed White House Attorney Rudy Giuliani in the first One on One interview, and asked him to explain apparent discrepancies in the Trump Tower story, in which President Trump contradicted an earlier categorical assurance, repeated many times over, that he had no hand in drafting a statement about his son's presence at a meeting at Trump Tower in which a Russian intelligence operative was allegedly present. Giuliani said: "It was a mistake. I swear to God".[4] Other interviewees in the show's first week included Senator Bernie Sanders and former White House Communications Director, Anthony Scaramucci.


Cuomo Prime Time was first broadcast for a week-long trial run in August 2017.[5] A second, month-long, run occurred in January 2018.[6]

The show is the first major change to CNN's evening schedule for several years, which until the show's launch typically consisted of two hours each for the news analysis shows Anderson Cooper 360° (8 p.m. — 10 p.m. E.T.) and CNN Tonight with Don Lemon (10 p.m. — 12 midnight E.T.).[7]

A format established by Cuomo as one of two main co-hosts of the weekday edition of CNN's New Day, a three-hour morning news show, consists of an in-depth interview with a leading newsmaker (usually a senior public figure such as a politician, legal advocate or a celebrity in a public campaign), and it became an important part of Cuomo Prime Time during the show's two trial runs.[7]

CNN's audience share has grown in recent years, but still lags behind that of Fox News and MSNBC during prime time.[8] In the 25 to 54-year-old demographic, during February 2018, Fox News' Hannity averaged 711,000 viewers, MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show averaged 641,000, but Anderson Cooper 360° lagged behind at 386,000 average viewers.[9] However, during its January trial run, Cuomo Prime Time tied with CNN's highest-rated show, Anderson Cooper 360°, among television viewers in the important 25-54 age ranges.[10] But CNN's Executive Vice President of Programming, Michael Bass, argues that chasing ratings is much less important to CNN than establishing a viable new programming format, and that the change is needed because CNN sometimes airs non-live programs at 9pm E.T., such as documentaries and features, and instead "needs to be live" at a time when potentially important news stories are developing.[8]

Cuomo Prime Time is scheduled to directly compete with Fox News' Hannity and MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show, which both consist of partisan political commentary from their respective presenters, in contrast to the analytical approach of CNN, in which a wide range of experts and political veterans with differing opinions are interviewed in large studio-based panel discussions.[11] Cuomo says that he recognizes that both Maddow and Hannity have high ratings: "They have huge numbers. I have huge respect for their success, and I take nothing away from them...But the point is, I don’t know where their partisan fights are getting us". Cuomo says that his interviews will feature newsmakers whom he will challenge if their statements are non-factual, and that his new show will encourage "debating with decency".[8] He describes his approach as one where "You have to hold people to answer the questions. There is too much evasiveness, too much pandering, too much playing with the facts. You have to cut out the bias".[8] He also says that "people are making the choice to be all in on one side. And unfortunately, while it's being done in the name of balance and in the name of truth, it's really just deepening the divide. That's feeding this move towards the tribal. I think that's a mistake".[12]

Cuomo says that his new show "will not be tethered to the TV studio" and that he will travel more frequently for live broadcasts to the scenes of big breaking news.[8] During a recent edition of The Axe Files podcast, the host David Axelrod asked Cuomo about the title of Cuomo Prime Time, and he responded that none of the “trappings” of the program matter to him and that during the January 2018 [second] trial run, he "wore the same suit every night for a month".[13]


The show opens with a run-down of several program segments and the naming of guests. The segments consist of the following:[14]

  • Opening Statement — Cuomo on most kickoff segments would talk about the recent news, and combines them with his own opinions in a speech;
  • One on One — As the title implies, an in-depth interview with a single guest. There will sometimes be more than one of this segment per show;
  • The Great Debate — Two guests argue over opposing viewpoints of a contentious issue, where unproven or untruthful statements are challenged;
  • @The Whiteboard — A point-by-point overview of a top news story, with Cuomo drawing on a vertical whiteboard to highlight key points and connections between them
  • Cuomo's Court
  • Closing Argument


In the first week of the presidency of Joe Biden, the show had a drop in viewers and a ratings decline with over 5 million total viewers at the beginning of January 2021 to 2.1 million on the last week of the month. In the key 25-54 demo, Cuomo Prime Time had their audience cut in half with fewer than half a million total viewers. [15]


  1. ^ Concha, Joe (11 May 2018). "CNN names executive producer for new Cuomo show". The Hill. Retrieved 13 May 2018.
  2. ^ "Cuomo Prime Time - Season 1". IMDb. April 16, 2019.
  3. ^ "Cuomo Prime Time - Season 2". IMDb. April 16, 2019.
  4. ^ Watkins, Eli (5 June 2018). "Giuliani on shifting Trump Tower story: 'It was a mistake. I swear to God.'". CNN. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  5. ^ "CNN tests 'Cuomo Prime Time' during busy week of news". NewscastStudio. August 28, 2017. Retrieved October 23, 2018.
  6. ^ "Cuomo Prime Time". NewscastStudio. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
  7. ^ a b Levine, Jon (14 March 2018). "CNN's Chris Cuomo to Launch New Primetime Show This Spring". TheWrap. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
  8. ^ a b c d e Steinberg, Brian (14 March 2018). "CNN Will Shake Up Primetime With Chris Cuomo". Variety. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
  9. ^ Stelter, Brian (14 March 2018). "From 'New Day' to prime time: Chris Cuomo moving to 9 p.m. on CNN". CNN Business. Retrieved 22 October 2018.
  10. ^ Concha, Joe (14 March 2018). "CNN's Cuomo moving to prime time, vows to 'test power' and 'debate with decency'". The Hill. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
  11. ^ Grynbaum, Michael M. (14 March 2018). "CNN Moves Chris Cuomo to Prime Time". The New York Times. Retrieved 3 June 2018.
  12. ^ Hyman, Dan (25 January 2018). "CNN's Chris Cuomo: How a Political Son Became America's Toughest News Anchor". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
  13. ^ Wemple, Erik (4 April 2018). "'I wore the same outfit every night': Chris Cuomo reveals a prime-time secret". The Washington Post. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
  14. ^ Hill, Michael P. (5 June 2018). "'Cuomo Prime Time' becomes permanent fixture on CNN's schedule". Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  15. ^ Bridge, Gavin (2021-02-01). "CNN PRIMETIME RATINGS FALL BACK TO EARTH IN FIRST POST-TRUMP WEEK". Variety. Retrieved 2021-02-02. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Anderson Cooper 360º
CNN Weekday lineup
9:00 pm – 10:00 pm
1:00 am – 2:00 am (replay)
Succeeded by
CNN Tonight