Friday, June 27, 2008

ABC Family Picks-Up Weekend Rights to Fresh Prince; CBS Fall Premiere Dates

In a shocking move, ABC Family has picked-up rights to air The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air beginning in August. You might be thinking, uh isn't it already on TBS and Nick at Nite/The N? Yes, you're of course right. This will be a three-way shared deal (with a record breaking four cable networks involved). This is at least the second three-way deal I have heard of, with the first being That '70s Show (FX, The N, ABC Family), but the first involving four networks. That '70s Show's deal is very complicated that I can't figure out what times each of those networks can air the show.
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air deal is pretty easy to figure out. ABC Family will be airing the series weekend evenings only starting Saturday, August 2. The show will air Saturday nights from 11pm-2am ET/PT and sometimes as well on Sundays back-to-back at 11 & 11:30pm ET/PT, if a movie doesn't go until midnight.
So, ABC Family will have weekend evening rights to the series. TBS has the daytime rights. Nick at Nite/The N (AKA Viacom portion of the deal) will now only have weekday evening rights (as they lose the seven days evening rights...what no more all-night seven nights Fresh marathons??), which means Fresh Prince of Bel-Air will not be airing on weekends anymore on both networks and that will be in effect starting next week (the deal starts in July actually). So the Nick at Nite schedule will change a bit. Family Matters, which launches this Sunday with a marathon from 9pm-4am, will get more timeslots because of this! Family Matters will take over the Saturday (early Sunday) slots at 12-2am and 2-3am and Sunday evenings 11pm-12am. Home Improvement will now air Saturdays 11pm-12am and 1-2am, while The Cosby Show will take over Sunday nights (early Monday) 1-2am. So Fresh Prince will only air weekdays...Mon-Thurs 11:30pm & 2-3am and Friday nights 12:30am & 3-4am. The N will air it weeknights at 8-9pm and 1-2am, as weekend airings for that network will also be removed. And TBS will continue to air it weekdays 9-10am.
For the full Nick at Nite schedule effective this Monday, head on over here. ABC Family won't be making any other changes in August when Fresh Prince comes.
If you're a Family Matters fan, then I have compiled an upcoming episodes list for Nick at Nite, that I thought might be handy. They are skipping season one because Urkel didn't become big until season two. Season one will air after this rotation finishes, which means we will have to wait until season nine ends. Tune in this Sunday for the launch marathon!

CBS announced premiere dates for the fall premieres of its new and returning series, which include a pre-season debut for Survivor: Gabon and the launch of its Thursday and Friday drama series in early October. CBS will introduce everything else from its schedule beginning Monday, Sept. 22, the official start of the 2008-2009 season. The only reason the premieres of the Thursday and Friday night dramas have been scheduled outside of premiere week is to accommodate the scheduled Presidential Debate on Sept. 26 and the Vice Presidential Debate on Oct. 2.
Here are the 2008-09 CBS premiere dates:

Thursday, Sept. 18
8-9 p.m.: Survivor (17th edition)

Monday, Sept. 22
8-8:30 p.m.: The Big Bang Theory (2nd season premiere)
8:30-9 p.m.: How I Met Your Mother (4th season premiere)
9-9:30 p.m.: Two and a Half Men (6th season premiere)
9:30-10 p.m.: Worst Week (series debut)
10-11 p.m.: CSI: Miami (7th season premiere)

Tuesday, Sept. 23
8-9 p.m.: NCIS (6th season premiere)
9-10 p.m.: The Mentalist (series debut)
10-11 p.m.: Without a Trace (7th season premiere)

Wednesday, Sept. 24
8-8:30 p.m.: The New Adventures of Old Christine (4th season premiere)
8:30-9 p.m.: Project Gary (series debut)
9-10 p.m.: Criminal Minds (4th season premiere)
10-11 p.m.: CSI: NY (5th season premiere)

Saturday, Sept. 27
8-9 p.m.: Crimetime Saturday
9-10 p.m.: Crimetime Saturday
10-11 p.m.: 48 Hours Mystery (season premiere)

Sunday, Sept. 28
7:00-8 p.m.: 60 Minutes (41st season premiere)
8-9 p.m.: The Amazing Race (13th edition)
9-10 p.m.: Cold Case (6th season premiere)
10-11 p.m.: The Unit (4th season premiere)

Friday, Oct. 3
8-9 p.m.: Ghost Whisperer (4th season premiere)
9-10 p.m.: The Ex List (series premiere)
10-11 p.m.: Numb3rs (5th season premiere)

Thursday, Oct. 9
9-10 p.m.: CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (9th season premiere)
10-11 p.m.: Eleventh Hour (series debut)

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