CBS Corp. has sold its drama, The Good Wife, in a
multiplatform deal that includes subscription video with on demand services, a
basic cable network and broadcast television stations. All told, The Good Wife will end up fetching as much as $2 million an episode, according to sources, putting it on par with other network dramas that were sold soley in broadcast and cable syndication.
"This is an off-network model for a unique serialized
show in today's television ecosystem," said Leslie Moonves, president and
CEO, CBS Corporation. "It uses creative windowing to serve the content
needs of best-in-class partners while realizing the full syndication value for
a high-quality series. In addition, the potential for catch-up viewing across
multiple platforms can provide incremental value to future broadcasts on the
CBS Television Network."
The first three seasons of The Good Wife will
premiere on Amazon Prime Instant Video on Thursday, March 14. The show
currently is in season four on CBS, where it airs on Sundays at 9 p.m. Season
four will premiere on Amazon later this year.
"The Good Wife consistently has been one of the
strongest sellers on Amazon Instant Video, so we know our customers love the
show," said Brad Beale, Amazon's director of digital video content
acquisition, in a statement.
The show's first four seasons also will premiere on Hulu
Plus this fall, when season five is expected to debut on CBS. Prior to this,
CBS has only distributed library content and CBS-produced programs that air on
The CW to Hulu.
"The Good Wife is one of the best dramas on
network TV and we are thrilled to bring this show -- as well as thousands of
episodes from 20 other shows in the CBS library -- to our Hulu Plus
subscribers," said Andy Forssell, Hulu's senior VP of content, also in a
statement. "CBS has been an important partner to us, and we are proud that
our agreement continues to create accretive revenue streams for their premium
On basic cable, The Hallmark Channel acquired the show to
air on weekdays starting January 2014.
"Hallmark Channel's audience is very reflective of CBS',
and as our network enters the arena of creating original, primetime scripted
fare, we look to TV programs like The Good Wife as the type of
award-winning, quality series we value and want to emulate," said Bill
Abbott, president and CEO, Crown Media Family Networks, Hallmark Channel and
Hallmark Movie Channel.
Finally, CBS Television Distribution has sold the show to
local television stations, including the CBS Television Stations, covering 85%
of the country. The show will premiere on TV stations on weekends starting
"This is a syndication rollout that's a great match of
program with partners," said Scott Koondel, CBS Corp.'s chief content
licensing officer. "The Good Wife episodes have been popular on
Amazon's electronic-sell-through (EST) service, and addictive serialized dramas
like this perform very well on Hulu Plus. Meanwhile, the Hallmark brand has always
been associated with quality and prestige, and The Good Wife is one of
the most honored, critically acclaimed and talked-about shows on television --
and, of course, it's a series that has always performed well on the CBS-owned
The Good Wife, which has been the recipient of Emmy, Golden
Globe, Peabody, WGA and SAG Awards since its 2009 debut, is produced by CBS
Television Studios in association with Scott Free Productions. The show stars
Julianna Margulies, who has won an Emmy, Golden Globe and SAG Award for her
portrayal of attorney Alicia Florrick. Executive producers are Ridley Scott,
Robert King, Michelle King, David Zucker, Brooke Kennedy, Ted Humphrey, Keith
Eisner and Leonard Dick. Robert King and Michelle King are the creators.
Updated on March 13 at 10:20 a.m. PT