TBS, Syfy and WGN America are giving some of their new shows a boost with commercial-free episodes. “We’re obviously an ad-supported network and our advertising partners are really important to us, but for me, nothing is more important than the shows launching successfully,” says WGN America’s Matt Cherniss,
Tribune is banking on edgy, original shows to turn the Chicago-based “superstation” into a a major national cable channel that can compete with stars like AMC. The makeover requires a heavy investment in programming and marketing.
Matt Cherniss is selling more than simply a slate of TV shows. Since he took his current job as president and GM of WGN America and newly formed Tribune Studios in spring 2013, he also has had to sell a channel that, until now, had no distinguishable brand and is available in only 72 million homes. He talks about WGN’s marketing challenge, the perks of bypassing pilots and why he has needed to open the Tribune wallet as wide as he has.
In today’s earnings call with analysts, CEO Peter Liguori says over the next three-to-five years, it intends to turn WGN America into a “robust” cable network that includes 52 weeks of original programming encompassing four one-hour episode series such as the current Salem and Manhattan. He adds that “in general, we see over the top as a tremendous opportunity. We look forward to discussions with new entrants willing to pay fair market value for our content.”
Hulu Plus and CBS announce new SVOD deal for CBS drama starring Tom Selleck. WGN America acquires exclusive basic cable rights while Ion gets exclusive weekday, primetime rights for off-net episodes.
CBS is expected to announce an SVOD deal for the Tom Selleck crime drama as well as pacts with both WGN America and Ion.
As WGN America relaunches as a destination for original content, Tribune Broadcasting will begin a marketing push to promote the cable network’s first original, scripted series, Salem, to millions of Super Bowl fans with promos during the pre-game show on its 13 Fox affiliates.
PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — The Bible is still hot, at least as a television property. The WGN America network said Sunday that it has ordered a 10-part series, “Ten Commandments,” with a unique twist. Over 10 nights, 10 different filmmakers will take on a single commandment with a modern interpretation of its meaning. Five filmmakers […]
WGN America and Tribune Studios named Tom Huffman SVP of unscripted programming. He joins Tribune in October and will oversee unscripted series development for both WGN America and Tribune Studios. Huffman will be based in Los Angeles and report to Matt Cherniss, president-GM of WGN America and Tribune Studios. “As Tribune continues its expansion into […]
That was quick. Tribune Co.’s new topper Peter Liguori isdrawing on his strengths as a TV programmer and marketer to energize Tribune’s 23 major-market TV stations and its WGN America cable channel.
The cable channel will begin airing the Amy Poehler comedy starting in September.
Tribune Co. CEO-in-waiting Peter Liguori will focus on a makeover of the company’s WGN America cable station as soon as the media giant emerges from reorganization. The national cable network, which currently runs a mix of syndicated shows like Law and Order and 30 Rock and Chicago Cubs games, may be converted into a channel that airs original programming to attract more viewers, says a source familiar with the situation.