CTD Shelves 'Man in the Middle'

Lack of shelf space, tough economics forces company to push panel talker
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CBS Television Distribution will not take its panel talk show, Man in the Middle starring Jerry O’Connell, into syndication this coming fall, sources confirmed Thursday.

CTD had no comment.

The show, which featured O’Connell and his wife Rebecca Romijn, was being considered as a possible replacement for Sony Pictures Television’s Queen Latifah. Latifah airs mostly in morning slots on the CBS owned stations, and is averaging a 1.0 in households so far this season, the show’s second. Neither SPT nor the CBS owned TV stations were immediately available to comment on whether the CBS stations had picked up the talk show for a third season.

Although Man in the Middle had already been partially cleared, it ran up against a lack of time slots with Meredith Vieira renewed for season two on the NBC owned stations, and The F.A.B., starring Tyra Banks, cleared on the ABC owned stations. Man in the Middle also was going to be relatively expensive to produce and needed strong time slots in top markets to make the economics work. CTD isn’t shelving the show completely, however, and hopes to bring it back to market in 2016, according to sources.

That takes one show off the slate for 2015, leaving Warner Bros.' Crime Watch Daily and Disney-ABC's The F.A.B. to premiere next fall. Rohrs Media Group also is shopping strip Safe and Secure with Bill Stanton and SPT is said to be offering Mind of a Man off of GSN.

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