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TCM's scheduling changes


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I can certainly appreciate that you are honoring Lena Horne's recent deafh by showing several movies she starred in thus canceling the programming that was suppose to air. However, it has become very apparent that you're not aware that we members who pay for our "Now Playing Guide" use it religiously. Many of us record certain shows that we have been waiting on because we are not able to always watch some of them at the time they are aired. We don't go online to verify your guide is correct - if we were to do that than please tell me why we would need to purchase the guide in the first place? Then there's this. Many do not have a computer especially your older viewing audience which I would suspect is actually the majority. In my case I was so looking forward to watching "The Lavender Hill Mob" late tonight. I even double check my guide book with the guide on my T.V. just to re-verify. However because you evidently have to submit your listings maybe two weeks in advance (or whatever the time period might be) it also does not reflect that those movies have all been removed and others added because of a recent death of a fallen Star. Now please do not misunderstand me. As I wrote in the beginning I think it's great you honor them in this way. But where you're maybe making a mistake is - why the rush? Oh I know if we happen to be watching TCM at the very right time Mr. Osborne will mention the change in scheduling. The odds a lot of us are watching right at those few seconds in time are slim. Why can you not schedule inserting those changes in scheduling say one month from the Actors death? That is still fairly recent, it would allow you considerably more time to make announcements for that entire period of time so that it would not catch many of us by surprise. It also might be a long period of time where our local cable stations would have this info. and so when we check the schedule whether that be in a regular T.V. Guide and for sure the listings on the Cable T.V. would certainly have enough time to make these changes. I know because I checked with Brighthouse (the main cable provider in the greater Tampa Bay area) and they informed me they only need two weeks notice. --- I certainly do not want to come across as insensitive to paying respect to those deaths of Actors who we will miss. But I just think there is a much better way of doing it and I don't think waiting one month would in anyway lessen the value, meaning or impact in paying respect to that person. For sure the majority of we loyal TCM viewers and we "Now Playing Guide" subscribers would really appreciate it.


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Moe, I am certain that many of us would like to not miss a favorite film due to rescheduling, but if you keep track on this board you will notice some here get upset because a recently deceased star doesn't get a tribute right away. A month wait to them is an unpardonable sin. Sometimes TCM is not able to schedule a tribute until a few months later because of special programming (such as the Star of the Month night) that they can't change from their schedule.


The Now Playing guides are sent to printers at least a month or two in advance, I would expect, of the start of a month (I usually get mine about the 10th of the month previous)...and even if they got the news in time of a death like Horne's, the scheduling probably couldn't be fixed because it it would make redoing several pages of the guide, and that would mean that people wouldn't get their NP's on time. Plus the programming department may have to make special arrangements to get that star's films.


It's always a good idea to check in on this website. They have had the change about Horne for awhile now on the front page.


The good news is that they will be showing Lavender Hill Mob on July 10th. (You can also rent it from Netflix in the meantime.)


Edited by: filmlover on May 21, 2010 3:10 PM

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*The Now Playing guides are sent to printers at least a month or two in advance, I would expect, of the start of a month (I usually get mine about the 10th of the month previous).*


Given the lead time with printers, the "Now Playing Guide" is likely sent to them with a two month lead time in order to guarantee that it gets printed, collated, finished and shipped in order to be received at least two weeks in advance of the month it is for.

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I absolutely love the NOW PLAYING guide and use it to make out a recording schedule for the month.


However, given the lead time with the printers that others have pointed out, the TCM website is an essential supplement. Movies become unavailable or scheduling mistakes occur now and then (for instance, two movies from next Monday's Evelyn Keyes day are no longer in my DVR schedule), and it strikes me as appropriate to pay tribute to deceased actors fairly soon after they pass on. Some flexibility and willingness to use "new technology" to supplement the printed word strikes me as a reasonable approach for TCM's fans, rather than expecting the station to stay rigidly locked in to something that was printed many weeks in advance. The vast majority of the films in NOW PLAYING, after all, air exactly as scheduled in the guide.


Fortunately TCM is sensitive to the disappointment when they must reschedule films due to tributes, and I would expect THE LAVENDER HILL MOB or other preempted films to show up on the schedule a few weeks from now!

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