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Les Moonves Leaves Complicated Legacy At CBS As Company And Industry Look To Emerge From His Long Shadow

The fall of Les Moonves is stunning for the sheer velocity with which one of the most powerful moguls in the media business got dethroned.

Once regarded as creative executive with few equals, Moonves now leaves a complicated legacy clouded by the allegations of sexual misconduct made this summer by a dozen women. The 68-year-old boss finalized his exit today after weeks of speculation about his fate as chairman and CEO. For CBS — and, really, the entire television industry, which is at the crescendo of Emmy time and on the verge of a new fall season — the question will be how it emerges from one of the longest shadows ever cast by an entertainment executive.

CBS appears eager to publicly distance itself from Moonves, already pulling his bio from the corporate website. It wasn’t that way when Leslie Roy Moonves first came to CBS in 1995 as president of entertainment,

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