Off-Net Shopping List Is Short for '03
By Paige Albiniak -- Broadcasting & Cable, 1/5/2003 7:00:00 PM
The off-network field is a little thinner at this year's NATPE conference, reflective of the recent lack of mega-hit TV shows to draw on.
|How About an Off-Net Program?|
|Here's what the major studios are offering for 2003|
|Source: Company reports, Morgan Stanley analyst Richard Bilotti, published reports
|Walker, Texas Ranger||Sony||Weekend hour|
|Ripley's Believe It Or Not||Sony||Half-hour reality|
|King of Queens||Sony||Sitcom|
|My Wife and Kids||Buena Vista||Sitcom|
|America's Funniest Home Videos||Buena Vista||One-hour strip|
Last year's big entry was Warner Bros.'Will & Grace, and that show has performed according to expectations, routinely coming in fourth behind syndicated powerhouses Warner Bros.'Friends, Sony's Seinfeld and King World's Everybody Loves Raymond.
This year's top entries are three sitcoms: Buena Vista Television's My Wife and Kids, Sony's King of Queens and Paramount's Becker.
Paramount also is rolling out UPN favorite The Parkers for next year and is starting to shop another UPN show, Girlfriends, for 2004.
Two reality-based strips will be available: Buena Vista's America's Funniest Home Videos, which has had a long run on ABC, and Sony's Ripley's Believe It Or Not, which is being sold to stations off its TBS Superstation cable run after first airing on The WB.
For weekends, Twentieth is selling one-hour drama Angel, The WB's spin-off of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Sony also is selling for weekends the Chuck Norris-starrer Walker, Texas Ranger, which already enjoys second runs on USA Network.
The fact that crime shows are hot on prime time now means they will be hot in syndication for years to come—just not next year. And increasingly, not on broadcast television. Hour-long dramas seem to be settling in more easily on cable networks.
But few will be coming this year.
King World plans to launch CSI: Crime Scene Investigation in broadcast syndication in fall 2005 but already is talking up prime time's number-one show. Universal is set to launch Law & Order: Criminal Intent in fall 2005. The show currently is repurposed on USA along with Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.
Twentieth is shopping David Kelley's high-school drama Boston Public for 2004, while Buena Vista is beginning to talk about two ABC shows: spy thriller Alias and sitcom According to Jim for 2005.
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