Saul Levine's KMZT-AM (1260) is turning off the Mozart and going all talk this week.


Classical "K-Mozart" will be pulled from its spot at 1260 and will now be available only in high definition digital FM on 105.1 HD 2.


It's the second major format change Levine has made in the past year. In February, K-Mozart abruptly shifted to country music a move that pulled the plug on Southern California's only FM commercial classical radio station. Now, non-profit KUSC is the sole classical station in the greater Los Angeles area.


The station will go by the call letters KGIL, as it was known when it was first established in 1947. Mt. Wilson FM Broadcasters announced last week that Michael Jackson, Larry King and Neal Boortz will headline the all-new KGIL-AM (1260), "L.A.'s News/Talk Radio," which is scheduled to go live Oct. 29.


KGIL will join KFWB-AM (980), KNX-AM (1070) and other all-talk stations in the Los Angeles market.


The shift brings radio personality Jackson back to Southern California radio. A seven-time Emmy winner, and longtime local personality, Jackson will anchor the weekday lineup in two slots: from 9 to 11 a.m. and 5 to 7 p.m.


The Mt. Wilson FM Broadcasters properties include the KKGO-FM (105.1) "Go Country 105" and through its affiliate, Global Jazz Inc., manages programming and support services of California State University Long Beach's KKJZ-FM (88.1) also known as K-Jazz.


Seoul Sounds

After 18 years in Los Angeles, Radio Korea has acquired its own frequency.


The station has started to broadcast as the renamed KMPC-AM (1540) with an output power of 50 kilowatts, giving the station a reach as far north as Bakersfield and as far south as San Diego.


Until now, the station had leased its signal at KYPA-AM (1230), from privately held radio group MultiCultural Radio Broadcasting Inc. Radio Korea's format will remain the same Korean news reports, interspersed with a variety of music, infomercials and talk shows.


Los Angeles is home to the world's largest concentration of Koreans outside of South Korea an estimated 700,000 in the greater L.A. area.


Established in 1989, Radio Korea was the first station to target the L.A.-area's Korean population, and last year partnered with Sirius satellite radio to launch Radio Korea USA, the first Korean satellite radio channel.


Guild Goings-On

The Writers Guild of America membership voted to give guild leaders strike authority last week.


The WGA's current contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers expires Oct. 31, but the strike authorization approved by 90.3 percent of the WGA members who turned out means WGA leaders can call a strike any time after that.


"A strike authorization vote is a pro forma tactic used by every union in the country and usually the vote is overwhelmingly in favor of a strike," said Nick Counter, the producers' alliance president, in response to the vote. "We are not surprised with the outcome of this vote, given reports of how this election was conducted. Our focus is on negotiating a reasonable agreement with the WGA."


The parties have been talking since July 16, but the producers and writers have not agreed on pay issues and compensation for new media.


Earlier this month, the AMPTP withdrew its most controversial demand, which would have changed current residual payment structure to let studios get back certain costs on film and TV projects before paying out future residuals. The guild flatly rejected the proposal in July; its withdrawal by the AMPTP appeared to be a big step in bringing the two sides closer together in negotiations, but face-to-face talks didn't resume until last week.


There is still somewhat fading hope that the guild could wait until next summer, when the directors and actors union contracts expire, and negotiate as a bloc with the other guilds.


In the event of a strike, the WGA has received the backing of the Screen Actors Guild.


Game Time

Debmar-Mercury LLC picked up worldwide TV rights to "Trivial Pursuit: America Plays," last week, and will develop the series as a first-run game show with a launch targeted for fall 2008.


The independent distributor, which was acquired by Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. for $27 million last summer, already has syndication rights to Lions Gate's film library, including the popular "Saw" series and the movie "Crash," as well as TV game shows and series such as "Family Feud," the Tyler Perry sitcom "House of Payne" and reruns of the hit Comedy Central cartoon, "South Park."


Debmar-Mercury recently teamed up with television personality and talk show host Tom Green to make the online-only talk show "Tom Green Live!" available for simulcast on broadcast television. The series is produced out of Green's living room and features celebrity interviews.


Staff reporter Anne Riley-Katz at can be reached at ariley-katz@labusinessjournal.com or at 323-549-5225, ext 225.

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