Wednesday, January 18, 2006

The Small Screen Big Picture

Get Edward Jay Epstein on line one. Here's Lisa de Moraes reporting on Garth Ancier's evaluation of his network's economic model:
Even though the WB in its best year makes a couple million dollars and in its worst year loses a couple million, that's not how the network is judged, Ancier insisted. The bigger moneymaker for parent Time Warner is Warner Bros. Television -- the most prolific producer of small-screen programming in the business, selling to all the TV networks. The value of the WB network is that it puts half of that production on the air, thereby opening up the possibility that all those shows may become eligible for syndication, overseas sales and other back-end deals, where the big bucks can be found. "Frankly, what would be the point of owning this network," which is a break-even proposition, Ancier said, "if you weren't going to have 'Smallville,' which is worth hundreds of millions in back-end value?"

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