Pivot network touts debut, fights off Current TV comparisons

Will new cable network Pivot, home to Joseph Gordon Levitt‘s HitRECord on TV and a talk show with Meghan McCain, change the TV model or become the next Current-style casualty?

That was the question of the day at Pivot’s debut panel during the Television Critics Association press tour, which is going on this week in Los Angeles.

“Last I checked, I don’t think Current had a scripted comedy or a music variety show,” said network president Evan Shapiro, referring to Levitt’s program and a scripted comedy from Australian comedian Josh Thomas called Please Like Me. “It’s a completely different approach to television.”

The network, which launches Aug. 1, aims at getting “millennials” to interact with the programming, which in addition to the aforementioned shows will include documentaries and am interactive late-night news show called Take Part Live.

McCain, daughter of Republican Arizona Sen. John McCain, further shot down comparisons to Al Gore’s ill-fated network, saying, “Current never would have hired me. Let’s start there.” “I came to Pivot because I think there has to be some middle ground between the Kardashians and C-Span. Young people can’t just be given these two options,” she said. “When I was growing up, MTV News was loud, proud and really inspired my life in a really real way. That doesn’t exist anymore. I want to give people information but not talk down to them.”

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