STAY TUNED: Humble beginnings secret to Nolan’s success

Quentin Roux/File
Patrick Nolan returns as master of ceremonies for the March 25 fashion show at Bistro Soleil, with a portion of the proceeds benefitting the American Cancer Society.

Photo by qr

Quentin Roux/File Patrick Nolan returns as master of ceremonies for the March 25 fashion show at Bistro Soleil, with a portion of the proceeds benefitting the American Cancer Society.

Fox 4’s 6, 10 and 11 p.m. anchor, Patrick Nolan, may have surpassed his own station in popularity, if that’s even possible. For four years in a row, Nolan has been part of an anchor team that was voted South Florida’s best. Quite an accomplishment, especially when you’re oft viewed as the underdog.

If that’s the case, Nolan says he doesn’t mind being the underdog: “It just means you’re scrappier, hungrier. You try and do a better job to connect with people.”

Recently, to promote their acquisition of “Judge Judy,” station brass made the unusual — by local station standards anyway — move to send their lead anchor cross-country to visit part-time Naples resident Judith Sheindlin at her Los Angeles studio.

“I would have preferred to stop by her house in Naples, but that wasn’t an option,” Nolan said, chuckling, alluding to the judge’s well-known disposition.

Fox 4's Patrick Nolan on the L.A. set of 'Judge Judy' with part-time Naples resident Judith Sheindlin. Submitted

Fox 4's Patrick Nolan on the L.A. set of "Judge Judy" with part-time Naples resident Judith Sheindlin. Submitted

TV’s No. 1 judge, who often bests “Oprah” in the national ratings, has digs right on Sunset Boulevard. A few months ago, Fox 4 sandwiched an additional hour of news at 6 p.m. between three episodes of “Judge Judy.”

“It keeps me busy. Eight years ago when I started, we only had one hour of news a day.”

Nolan’s credits his humble beginnings, growing up near Miami, for his success and popularity. Nolan’s mother was a teacher; his father a construction worker. He grew up in a house with no air conditioning and only one bathroom.

“I learned that life is a gift at every level,” he said.

He says his mother was a lot like the famous judge. “She kept it real and had no time for small talk.” He says that’s where he got his talent to choose his words carefully.

“In a large family you learn to speak up and make your voice heard when it counts. That’s one thing we try to do a Fox 4 — give people a voice.”

One thing he was surprised to learn during his recent visit to L.A.: While Judge Judy may get her way in the courtroom, she can be overruled by her executive producers.

“She considered wearing colors that would make her look more vibrant,” says Nolan. But the EPs insisted she stick to a traditional judge’s robe.

Watch Nolan’s behind the scenes interview at

What do you think of Nolan or any other anchor in Southwest Florida? Don’t forget to send me your e-mails.

More cancellations

According to its star Patricia Arquette, “Medium” has been canceled. Recently CBS cut the show’s episode order from 22 to 13 episodes. The news comes as little surprise.

Two years ago NBC canceled the CBS-produced series. CBS quickly picked it up and paired it with the similarly themed “Ghost Whisperer.”

Since CBS was now airing “Medium” and given the fact that “Ghost Whisperer” was produced primarily by ABC, it was an easy decision for CBS to kill “Ghost” after the previous season.

CBS’ most recent decision to cut the number of new “Medium” episodes likely stems from Lifetime’s yanking of the show from its daily schedule. “Medium’s” poor performance in syndication meant that long-term value in the series had diminished. However, in prime time, the show was still averaging more than 7 million viewers.

What’s your take? Will you miss “Medium?” Do you miss “Ghost Whisperer”? Send your comments to

It’s also a dark day for fans of the Jerry Bruckheimer-produced undercover-cop drama on TNT, “Dark Blue,” which has also been canceled. In its second season, the show starring Dylan McDermott averaged around 2.2 million viewers per episode.

In other TNT news, Ray Romano’s “Men of a Certain Age” returns 10 p.m., Dec. 6.

In the works

NBC will debut new dramas like “The Cape” and “Harry’s Law” during January while making time period changes for “Law & Order: Los Angeles,” “Chase,” “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” and “Parenthood.”

The network also plans to relaunch “The Event.” This will be a make-or-break effort for the show, whose ratings are on the cusp.

Beginning Jan. 20, NBC will be offering an entire night of comedy. It starts with “Community” and “Perfect Couples” in the 8 p.m. hour, followed by “The Office” and “Parks & Recreation” in the 9 p.m. hour, followed by “30 Rock” and “Outsourced.”

This wouldn’t be the first time that NBC ran six comedies in one night. During the 1990-91 season, then-NBC topper Brandon Tartikoff scheduled “Parenthood,” “Working it Out,” “The Golden Girls,” “Empty Nest,” “Carol & Company” and “American Dreamer” on Saturday nights.

Do you remember “Carol & Company?” It may have not been Carol Burnett’s finest half hour, but I was a huge pre-teen fan with nothing better to do on a Saturday night.

Unlike Burnett’s other variety shows, this series was a comedy anthology. It featured one show-long sketch, with each member of the company playing different characters each week and no “running” characters.

If you’d like to share some TV memories, e-mail me at

Bill Green is a Naples Daily News/ journalist with a secret life as a couch potato. Contact him at

© 2010 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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