05/22/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Can The Oprah Winfrey Network Succeed Without The Oprah Show?

But now, three years after her first meeting with David Zaslav, what that new phase will look like is still anything but clear. The new network's debut has been moved back twice. Its original creative team has all been fired or left on their own. And its roster of programming remains, at least publicly, vaguely defined. While OWN is supposed to be the vehicle for Oprah's midlife reinvention, no one can seem to figure out yet exactly what OWN is going to be. So far, the only thing everyone agrees would be a hit on OWN is something like the old Oprah Winfrey Show. Without that, the network appears destined to fall short of expectations. And while Zaslav and Discovery seem increasingly eager to coax Oprah into a greater on-air role, Oprah appears willing to consider anything except that.

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