WADL Detroit Drama Deepens, Sacked News Director Sounds Off

Call it Panic in Detroit.

I wrote last week of the bizarre case out in Detroit, where former Meredith group chief Kevin O’Brien was dismissed from Adell Broadcasting’s independent WADL, which took considerable pains to distance itself from the controversial broadcast vet. WADL said in its press release it had “disgorged remnants of Kevin O’Brien,” including the news director, Matt Stevens, he hired.

Well, Matt Stevens has offered up his side of it in a long treatise on his Over50TVTalent blog. I couldn’t absolutely confirm that it is Stevens’ site–there’s no email or phone number on the blog–but it’s hard to imagine it’s not him, based on the tick-tock details of his strange hiring/firing he includes in the screed.

Such as fearing he might not make it out of a meeting with WADL security chief Rich Mazzari alive, after returning the company car:

Rich invited me to come inside the building to warm up. It was a sunny day and just after noon. I declined, saying I enjoyed the sunshine, but thinking that if I did go inside, I might never be seen again. I called my wife on her cell phone and told her to pick me up at the top of the driveway. She pulled out to 15-Mile Road from the adjacent parking lot, where she had been SHOOTING VIDEO SINCE THE SUV WITH RICH AND THE GM HAD ARRIVED just in case they decided to recreate the disappearance of Jimmy Hoffa.  

Man, oh, man. Sounds like Matt’s wife has true reporter instincts.

Thanks to News Blues and TVSpy for sharing the link.

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.