It's a good thing Bill Zwecker likes "American Idol." As the new entertainment contributor to WFLD-Channel 32, he'll be the designated point man for the prime-time franchise that all Fox-owned stations are required by law to flog endlessly on their newscasts.
The veteran celebrity columnist and show business reporter debuted Wednesday on Channel 32's 9 p.m. newscast with a piece about Elvis Presley, pegged to what would have been his 75th‚ birthday tomorrow. But if there were any doubt that "Idol" will be Zwecker's bread and butter, his new bosses couldn't have been more explicit. In a statement announcing the hiring, Mike Renda, vice president and general manager of Channel 32, said:
"We're thrilled to have Bill as part of the Fox Chicago News team. He will be an asset as we head in to a new season of shows, such as "ËœAmerican Idol,' providing viewers with an inside look at the latest news, information and behind the scenes action."
Zwecker is expected to deliver entertainment reports three or four times a week on Channel 32's 9 p.m. newscast, but he also will appear occasionally on its "Good Day Chicago" morning show.