or


[03/11/03 - 12:00 AM]
UPN Renews 'Smackdown!'
By Brian Ford Sullivan (TFC)

CHICAGO (thefutoncritic.com) -- UPN and the WWE have signed a multi-year renewal deal to keep "WWE Smackdown" at the network through the 2004-05 season.

Despite ratings being down by 13% from last season (6.37 million viewers on average vs. 5.55 million as of March 2), "Smackdown" is still UPN's most-watched program as well as the top-rated show among male teens and the third-highest-rated show among persons 12 through 34 (behind CBS and NBC) in its time period.

The deal also marks a change in the series' license-fee structure. Previously, in what was essentially a time buy, the WWE had paid a straight fee of $300,000 per week (about $16 million a year) to UPN in order to broadcast the series. In exchange, the WWE sold most of "Smackdown's" ad inventory, with UPN handling just two minutes' worth of spots. Beginning this fall however, the WWE will switch to a more traditional license-fee arrangement as now UPN will pay the company about $500,000 per week for the series and take over selling all of the ad inventory.

Despite the netlet actually paying for the series now, the switch will likely end up putting more money in UPN's pocket. The WWE reportedly makes $1 million per episode through its ad spots and with UPN taking over the inventory, it will see a net profit of $500,000 per episode, an increase from the $300,000 the WWE currently pays them.

Other details announced: UPN will keep the series on Thursday nights and the WWE will create four "Smackdown"-related specials per year in addition to its usual 52 weeks-a-year format.

This article was updated on March 12.





  [march 2003]  
S
M
T
W
T
F
S
      


· WWE SMACKDOWN (SYFY)









[05/05/15 - 02:34 PM]
The CW Pulls "Cedric's Barber Battle" from Friday Lineup
Back-to-back episodes of "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" will now fill the 8:00/7:00c hour.

[05/05/15 - 02:31 PM]
Syfy and Steven Spielberg's Amblin Television Reuniting to Develop Aldous Huxley's Classic Novel "Brave New World"
In the series, humans are given mind-altering drugs, free sex and rampant consumerism are the order of the day, and people no longer reproduce but are genetically engineered in "hatcheries."

[05/05/15 - 01:07 PM]
It's Time to Get Saved with Lifetime(R)'s All-New Docuseries, "Preach" Premiering June 5
The six-episode series follows four powerful female leaders who believe God has given them the ability to heal the sick, see the future and rid people of their addictions.

[05/05/15 - 12:50 PM]
College Softball Conference Tournaments: 50 Games, 11 Championships
The ACC Championship Game (ESPN) and American Athletic Conference Championship Game (ESPN2) will be televised Saturday, May 9.

[05/05/15 - 12:45 PM]
Production Begins in Pittsburgh on WGN America's "Outsiders," New Original Drama Series from Peter Mattei, Peter Tolan and Paul Giamatti
David Morse, Joe Anderson, Thomas M. Wright and Ryan Hurst star in the 13-episode series, due in early 2016.

[05/05/15 - 12:34 PM]
U.S. Women's National Team Preps for World Cup in Two Send-Off Series Matches on FOX Sports 1
The series begins on Mother's Day, Sunday, May 10, with an important friendly against the Republic of Ireland, followed by a match against Mexico on Sunday, May 17.

[05/05/15 - 12:24 PM]
Hallmark Movies & Mysteries' Original Movie, "Murder, She Baked: A Chocolate Chip Cookie Mystery" Becomes the Network's Most-Watched Film Among W25-54, Households, and Total Viewers
The Hallmark Channel spins the numbers for Saturday, May 2.

[05/05/15 - 12:01 PM]
C. Thomas Howell and Henry Rollins to Guest Star in ABC Family's New Procedural Drama "Stitchers"
Howell will guest star in a recurring role as Daniel, a mysterious person Kirsten (series star Emma Ishta) knew long ago.

[05/05/15 - 11:48 AM]
Esquire Network Partners with Buick for "Knife Fight" Season Three - Debuts Short-Form Series "Eat Like a Man"
Select episodes feature on-air "pantry tours" with host Ilan Hall sourcing the latest secret ingredients in the Buick Regal GS.

[05/05/15 - 11:46 AM]
Josh Charles Joins Hit Series "Masters of Sex" in a Major Guest-Starring Role
He'll play Daniel Logan, a self-made businessman working in the scent industry.

[05/05/15 - 11:03 AM]
E! Continues to Expand Pop Culture Prowess with Two New Series and Dynamic Original Development Slate
"The Comment Section" and "Just Jillian" are on tap for late summer 2015 and early 2016, respectively.

[05/05/15 - 10:08 AM]
Poppy Montgomery Guest Stars in "Signed, Sealed, Delivered: From Paris with Love" Premiering June 6
Eric Mabius, Kristin Booth, Crystal Lowe and Geoff Gustafson return for this world premiere two-hour movie from Martha Williamson.

[05/05/15 - 09:19 AM]
Chiller Unveils 2015-2016 Original Programming, Including Original Movies and Network's First-Ever Original Series
"Slasher" follows the plight of a young woman who returns to the small town where she was born, only to find herself the centerpiece in a series of horrifying copycat murders - based on the widely-known, grisly killings of her parents.

[05/05/15 - 09:14 AM]
HBO Offers Bonus Presentation of "Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck" Next Sunday, May 10
Widely acclaimed at film festivals and in its recent limited theatrical run, the documentary debuted Monday, May 4.

[05/05/15 - 09:06 AM]
"Conan" to Film from Comic-Con(R) International July 8-11
This will mark the first time ever a late-night show has broadcast from San Diego during Comic-Con.