OWN Gets Early Viewers

First shows in among cable's biggest draws Saturday
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Related -- TV Review: OWN

More than a million people found Oprah Winfrey's new
cable network as it launched over the New Year's holiday.

Oprah Winfrey Network on Monday released preliminary numbers
from Nielsen on its primetime performance on its first two days on the air,
Saturday and Sunday, which showed that the queen of syndication held her own
with the giants of cable.

On Saturday, OWN was the No. 3 ad supported cable network
among women 25-54 at 8 p.m. and 9 p.m., trailing ESPN and USA Network. OWN
averaged 1 million viewers in primetime and a 1.1 household rating in its
coverage area. The network aired two premiere episodes of Season 25: Oprah
Behind the Scenes, plus Oprah's guide to OWN, which had appeared twice
previously.

On Sunday, OWN dropped back to No. 14 in prime among women
25 to 54. The premiere of Ask Oprah's All Stars, airing from 8 to 10 p.m.
drew 968,000 viewers and Master Class attracted 602,000 viewers.

OWN plans to announced ratings for its entire launch weekend
on Tuesday.

OWN is a joint venture between Oprah Winfrey's Harpo
Productions and Discovery Communications, which has pumped $189 million into
the network. The network appears on the channel previously carrying the
low-rated Discovery Health, which averaged about 252,000 viewers in prime last
year.

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