Friday, May 08, 2009

Tribune Stations Land Entourage, Curb for Fall 2010 Local Syndication; ABC Picks-Up Modern Family, More Updates

HBO and Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution have licensed the broadcast television syndication rights to the critically acclaimed and award-winning comedy series Entourage and Curb Your Enthusiasm to Tribune Broadcasting's stations in a three-year agreement for a fall 2010 airing.
Under terms of the three-year pact, Tribune has licensed all seven seasons of Curb Your Enthusiasm and all six seasons so far of Entourage for broadcast on all of Tribune's owned-and-operated stations in 17 markets, including New York (WPIX-TV), Los Angeles (KTLA-TV) and Chicago (WGN-TV), among others. Both series will be presented in strip form on the Tribune Broadcasting stations, with episodes airing Monday-Friday, along with one weekend telecast, beginning in fall 2010.
As mentioned earlier this week, Spike TV has bought the cable rerun rights for Entourage starting in January 2010, so it will have a nine-month head start on cable. Curb Your Enthusiasm is also being shopped around for cable repeats.

ABC has made its first pickup for the fall season, a sitcom. Modern Family, the single camera mocumentary about about three suburban couples -- a traditional one, a gay one and a multi-ethnic one. ABC has ordered 13 episodes from 20th Television and the show stars Ed O'Neill (Married with Children), Sofia Vergara (Knights of Prosperity), Julie Bowen (Lost) and Jesse Tyler Ferguson (The Class). The show has tested very well in focus groups and screenings. ABC also has unofficially picked-up drama Flash Forward, as teasers have aired during Lost the last two weeks to generate some buzz.
In other ABC updates, Surviving Suburbia will be preempted for a second week in a row for a two-hour Dancing with the Stars this coming Monday (May 11). That was scheduled to be its last Monday airing anyway, as the show will move to Wednesdays at 9:30pm starting May 27.
Meanwhile, the final episodes of According to Jim will run into the summer thanks to all the preemptions by President Obama. On Tuesday, May 26 and Tuesday, June 2, According to Jim will air its final four episodes (8-9pm both weeks), including the finale on June 2 at 8:30pm with a parade of guest stars. But before that there are two new episodes airing this Tuesday (May 12).

Stay tuned all next week for our predictions of the fall schedules for NBC, Fox, ABC, CBS, and The CW. First up will be NBC, which we will cover likely on Sunday and the rest will follow in that order every other day. And the following week of course is upfront week and we will get the actual schedules and you can compare to see what we got right and wrong! Big and fun time of year!

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