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6 Reasons Bill O'Reilly Can Make a Big Comeback

Image: 6 Reasons Bill O'Reilly Can Make a Big Comeback
Host Bill O'Reilly appears on 'The O'Reilly Factor' on The FOX News Channel at FOX Studios on March 17, 2015 in New York City. (Rob Kim/Getty Images)

By    |   Monday, 08 May 2017 07:51 AM

Bill O’Reilly was forced off the air in April after The New York Times revealed he and the Fox News Channel had shelled out some $13 million to settle harassment lawsuits brought by five women.

O’Reilly, a ratings powerhouse since the cable channel launched in 1996, was ousted less than a year after his boss, Fox News CEO Roger Ailes, was also forced out after being hit with numerous sexual harassment charges. Both men have denied any wrongdoing.

Whether you love O’Reilly or hate him, the fact remains he’s one of TV’s most recognizable personalities as well as being the best-selling co-author of more than a dozen history and general interest books, such as “Killing Kennedy,” “Killing Lincoln,” and “Kids are Americans, Too.”

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And because Americans always like a good comeback, there’s a very good chance that the 67-year-old newsman will land on his feet somewhere in the cable or broadcast TV stratosphere.

Here are six factors that could put O’Reilly in the media driver’s seat once again.

1. O’Reilly still has an enormously faithful fan base – He’s been the king of cable news for almost 20 years, and he left Fox with the No. 1 audience of any cable news host in the country. Within minutes of the announcement that "The O’Reilly Factor" was history, his legions of fans flooded Twitter, Facebook, and other social media platforms to cry foul, blaming everything from the liberal media to other journalists for his demise.

2. Social media – O’Reilly could easily pull in hundreds of thousands of viewers if he began a daily Facebook Live show, which many other conservative and liberal voices have done. And whereas his Fox News show was seen only by people who turned it on, a program on Facebook would be teased in the feeds of millions of Facebook users whether they wanted it or not.

3. A subscription network – O’Reilly could follow in the footsteps of his conservative brethren like Glenn Beck, who launched The Blaze, which features a non-stop feed of right-leaning news and opinion; and Mark Levin’s Levin TV. With more and more Americans cutting their cable cords in favor of streaming services, it’s a good bet.

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4. O’Reilly’s prolific publishing business – O’Reilly has written or co-written over 25 non-fiction books and even a novel, making him a perennial name on The New York Times best-sellers list. Which means that every time a new book comes out, and every time one of them is adapted into a TV series, he’ll be on television promoting them. And if those high-profile appearances get big ratings, it could easily lead to one-off TV specials or even a nationally syndicated talk show.

5. The lucrative lecture circuit – O’Reilly stands to rake in millions speaking before conservative groups across America and if his longtime show is any barometer, he’ll likely make news at those appearances with his patented zingers and outrageous talking points. Those live appearances and the publicity they bring will not be lost on TV bosses who are always looking for big audiences.

6. O’Reilly’s long, long, long longevity – O’Reilly has been on TV radar since the 1970s, working at such outlets as WBZ-TV in Boston, WNEP-TV in Scranton, WFAA-TV in Dallas, KMGH-TV in Memphis, KATU in Portland, WFSB in Hartford, WNEV-TV (now WHDH-TV) in Boston, WCBS-TV in New York, ABC News, and the tabloid TV show “Inside Edition,” before joining Fox in 1996. In other words, O’Reilly has always landed on his feet as he climbed the media ladder. So the odds of comeback are high.

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Whether you love O’Reilly or hate him, the fact remains he’s one of TV’s most recognizable personalities. Here are six factors that could put O’Reilly in the media driver’s seat once again.
bill o reilly, big, comeback, reasons
Monday, 08 May 2017 07:51 AM
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