SACRAMENTO — California Lottery officials appeared close to an agreement Wednesday that would move the trouble-plagued "Big Spin" television show from Hollywood to the state capital and guarantee that the program will stay on the air.
Mark Michalko, state lottery director, who had to resort to an 11th-hour court order to get last week's show on the air, said he is confident of success in his negotiations with the consortium of American Broadcasting Co.-affiliated stations that broadcasts the weekly game. The lottery network includes KABC in Los Angeles and KGTV in San Diego.
On the show, next scheduled for 7 p.m. Saturday, selected finalists spin a lottery wheel for a chance to win grand prizes ranging to $3 million. Since its inception in October, the weekly show has been produced in a Hollywood studio.
Lottery officials have been negotiating this week to tape the show at Sacramento television station KOVR. Producers in Hollywood reportedly had grown dissatisfied with the program's projected advertising revenues, which are expected to drop as a result of the recent shift from Monday nights to Saturday nights, where it will draw a smaller audience.
Charles Kennedy, an attorney for KOVR, said Wednesday that all but two of the stations--KABC and KGO in San Francisco--have indicated that they will continue to air the show, and Michalko said he is sure that all will join in "because the contract calls for it."
However, Michalko still does not have the written, long-term commitment from the stations that he wants, and Kennedy said Wednesday night that he "can't comment" on Michalko's demand that the consortium reimburse the state $65,000 the lottery had to advance to producers last week to cover the costs of producing the Jan. 4 program.