WLS-Channel 7 is moving the weekday morning talk show “Windy City Live” to afternoons and bringing back the 11 a.m. newscast it canceled three years ago, according to sources at the ABC-owned station.
Starting June 27, “Windy City Live” is expected to air at 1 p.m. weekdays, replacing the canceled “FAB Life” on the ABC 7 daytime lineup.
This will be the third time slot for “Windy City Live” since its debut in 2011. It initially aired at 9 a.m. as the local replacement for “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” which dominated the hour for more than a quarter-century in Chicago. In 2013 the show moved to 11 a.m. to make room for the syndicated “Live with Kelly and Michael” at 9 a.m.
Coinciding with the change in 2013, ABC 7 dropped its top-rated 11 a.m. newscast, anchored by Linda Yu and Sylvia Perez, after more than 20 years. The anchor lineup for the new 11 a.m. newscast has not been finalized.
Insiders said the move to 1 p.m. is seen as a way to increase viewership for “Windy City Live” by airing it at an hour with no locally produced competition. Restoring the 11 a.m. news will “level the playing field” with ABC 7’s competitors, according to a source.
“Windy City Live” led at 11 a.m. in the latest Nielsen sweep with a 2.5 rating (86,880 households) and 9 share. But among viewers between 25 and 54 — the demo most sought by advertisers — the show finished fourth, fractionally behind local newscasts on NBC-owned WMAQ-Channel 5, CBS-owned WBBM-Channel 2 and Tribune Media WGN-Channel 9.
Now in its fifth season, “Windy City Live” is hosted by Val Warner and Ryan Chiaverini with contributing host Ji Suk Yi.