Court TV Reboot Sets May Launch Date Via E.W. Scripps’ Katz Networks; Unveils Programming Lineup

By Denise Petski, Dade Hayes

EXCLUSIVE: Katz Networks, a unit of the E.W. Scripps Co., has set May 8 for the relaunch of the iconic TV brand Court TV, and unveiled its programming schedule for the network as well as

Weekday programming will kick off at 9 AM EDT daily with live, gavel-to-gavel coverage, legal reporting and expert analysis of trials across the country. Yodit Tewolde will anchor trial coverage from 9 AM-Noon, Julie Grant picks up from Noon–3 PM, followed by Seema Iyer from 3-6 PM, all times EDT. The first trial the network will be covering will be announced shortly.

When court recesses for the day, Emmy-winning legal journalist, former prosecutor and original Court TV anchor Vinnie Politan will host Closing Arguments with Vinnie Politan weeknights from 6-9 PM ET. He’ll lead viewers through the key events and moments of the legal day, joined by Court TV’s team of anchors, legal correspondents and veteran crime and justice journalists, along with top attorneys, investigators and experts who will provide legal insights, opinion, discussion and debate.

“What SportsCenter is to sports, Closing Arguments will be to the legal world,” said Politan. “Viewers will get nightly highlights of the trial we’re covering plus we’ll also tick through news from the other major true crime stories of the day. After our great, all-day trial coverage, it’ll be must-see viewing for those who want to keep up with everything happening in our nation’s legal system and courtrooms.”

Court TV’s team of legal correspondents and reporters includes Chanley Painter, Ted Rowlands and Julia Jenaé. Overseeing Court TV programming are former Court TV and CNN producers John Alleva and Scott Tufts as vice presidents and managing editors.

For nearly two decades, Court TV brought high-profile courtroom dramas into American living rooms with trials such as O.J. Simpson, the Menendez Brothers and Casey Anthony. The new Court TV will run 24 hours a day, seven days a week and will be carried on cable, satellite, over-the-air and over-the-top. The network has agreements with local TV station groups including Tribune, Scripps and Univision. Those deals will make Court available in more than 50% of U.S. TV households at launch, with cable reach to 25% of homes. New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Boston, Miami, Washington and Detroit are among the major markets in which Court TV will be seen; more distribution agreements will be announced before launch.

During its prime years in the 1990s and early 2000s, Court TV, then owned by Turner Broadcasting, was desirable acquisition target and an incubator of notable talent both on camera and in the executive suite. Its on-air personalities included Nancy Grace, Dan Abrams, Catherine Crier and Terry Moran and its executive roster included Henry Schleiff (now a group president at Discovery), Erik Sorenson (who went on to lead MSNBC) and Evan Shapiro (a producer and former head of cable networks IFC and Pivot). Court TV’s 17-year run ended in 2008, when Turner rebranded it as truTV.

In order to pull off the reboot, Katz acquired Court TV’s intellectual property, including the trademark, website and 100,000-hour library from Turner.

Watch a promo of the new Court TV below.

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