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Ad Describing Paula Zahn as "Sexy" is Pulled
NEW YORK CNN has canceled a promotional ad which described Paula Zahn, the star of its new morning show, as "sexy".
The ad, which was run last weekend, said, "Where can you find a morning news anchor who's provocative, super-smart, oh yeah, and just a little sexy?"
An embarrassed CNN said that the ad was a mistake.
Fox news, which fired Ms. Zahn in September when it learned she was negotiating with CNN crowed ecstatically. Brit Hume of Fox said that, in the old days, CNN made news the star. But now, because of competition, it had to make stars the news.
Don Hewitt, producer of "60 Minutes" on rival network CBS, said "It's undignified. It diminishes a first-rate woman journalist to label her as sexy."
He added, "Why doesn't CNN say that Wolf Blitzer is sexy? He must be sexy to somebody."**
But Ms. Zahn felt diminished in another way. "How come they say I'm 'just a little sexy'? I'm very sexy."
**Quoted in The New York Times on January 9, 2002.