As Fox continues to add programming in preparation for its post-Disney-deal future, its TV station group has acquired broader rights to syndicated entertainment staple Extra, which is leaving NBC stations in fall 2019 in time for its 25th anniversary.
Cleared in 93% of the country for Fall 2019, the Warner Bros. show will join the Fox station group in major markets such as New York, LA, Philadelphia, Dallas, San Francisco, Orlando and Charlotte. The series is already airing on FOX O&O’s in Chicago, Washington, D.C. and Detroit. As of Fall 2019, the series will air on 10 FOX-owned stations.
NBC’s Owned Television Stations group had opted not to renew Extra, which entered the daily entertainment race in 1994 as a rival to Entertainment Tonight and Access Hollywood.
Ahead of the sale of two-thirds of 21st Century Fox to Disney, Fox has been aggressively lining up programming, adding major assets like WWE wrestling and NFL football to national prime time. In the syndication realm, the company recently made offers for Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune, only to be outbid by Disney-ABC. After the merger closes (likely in the coming weeks), Fox will consist mostly of the broadcast network, Fox News and the station portfolio, which has 28 stations in 17 markets.
Frank Cicha, Senior Vice President, Programming, for the Fox stations, called the Extra deal a “win-win for two companies with a strong history together.” The show, he added, “fits right into our day and date strategy and the stations will be ready to ensure its continued success. While it’s targeted primarily for big time periods, it can run all over the place and we’ll take advantage of that. And, there will be great opportunities to work with our news departments as well.”
Ken Werner, President, Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution, hailed the expansion of ties between his company and Fox Stations. “They are at the forefront of successfully meeting the challenges of the television environment by creating destinations in their local communities for live compelling programming,” he said. “Extra is the perfect franchise to add to their line-up bringing a unique angle on the events of the day in the entertainment industry.”
A spokesperson for the NBC Owned Television Stations said the group had not yet finalized its fall 2019 evening programming lineup. “We will make an announcement about our new evening programming, soon.”