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[01/19/06 - 12:00 AM]
America's Most Popular Television Series 'American Idol' to Be Syndicated as 'American Idol Rewind'

[via press release from Tribune]

America's Most Popular Television Series 'American Idol' to be Syndicated as 'American Idol Rewind'

Tribune Entertainment Deal With FremantleMedia North America and 19 Entertainment Covers Station and Advertiser Sales

Initial Clearance of Tribune and Sinclair Stations Represents 55% of the Country and Nine out of the Top 10 Markets

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 19 -- "American Idol," America's most popular television series which airs on the FOX network, will be coming to syndication through an agreement between Tribune Entertainment, FremantleMedia North America and 19 Entertainment. The announcement was made today by Dick Askin, president and CEO of Tribune Entertainment and Cecile Frot-Coutaz, CEO of FremantleMedia North America and executive producer of American Idol.

The one-hour, weekend series titled, "American Idol Rewind" will premier with the first season of "American Idol" in September 2006. "American Idol Rewind" will retain its irresistible competitive spirit but will be a streamlined, enhanced program offering never-before-seen footage, fascinating behind the scenes facts and details, a distinctive look and a fast paced, highly entertaining hour of television.

The series is being sold on all barter, double run basis with a Fall 2006 availability. Tribune is representing station and advertiser sales. FremantleMedia North America and 19 TV are producing the series.

Mr. Askin disclosed that "American Idol Rewind" has already been cleared on Tribune and Sinclair stations representing 55% of the country and nine out of the top 10 markets.

"American Idol" has been a smash hit in primetime with 2004-2005 rankings of all network series programs placing it in the #1 position on Tuesday nights across the board in households, women 18-34, women 18-49 and women 25-54. The series has grown each of its four seasons on FOX and continues to grow in popularity.

Askin stated, "'American Idol Rewind' combines all of the characteristics of elite off-network weekend successes including being a smash hit in primetime; having dual female and male appeal and enjoying substantial momentum going into syndication. 'American Idol' continues to be the ultimate television brand and its value to stations across the country should be exceptional."

Frot-Coutaz added, "Our weekend series will complement the primetime airing of 'American Idol' on FOX stations and will enable more stations to capitalize on the 'Idol' phenomenon."

"'American Idol Rewind' capitalizes on an extensive library of the country's #1 show to offer fans the opportunity to revisit some of their old favorites," stated Simon Fuller, "American Idol" creator. "This is the first time the country can now track each winner throughout the season -- from beginning to final performance."

Tribune Entertainment, the Los Angeles-based entertainment division of The Tribune Company, holds a diverse portfolio of programming for syndication, network and cable. Tribune Entertainment has entered into a variety of distribution, production and ad sales relationships with such major partners as DreamWorks SKG, FremantleMedia North America, Hearst Entertainment, New Line Television, NBC Universal Television and Sony Pictures Television.

FremantleMedia North America is a division of FremantleMedia, one of the largest international creators and producers of program brands in the world, with production operations in more than 25 countries. FremantleMedia co-developed, co-owns and co-produced "Pop Idol" in the UK and has produced the format in over 30 countries worldwide. FremantleMedia is the production arm of the RTL Group, Europe's largest television and radio broadcast company. With interests in 30 television channels and 32 radio stations in 11 countries, RTL Group is a division of leading integrated media and entertainment company Bertelsmann AG. For further information, visit http://www.fremantlemedia.com.

The 19 Group of Companies was founded by Simon Fuller in 1985 and has achieved over 40 #1 singles and 15 #1 albums. Fuller also has an impressive tally of over 60 Top-40 albums and 170 Top-40 singles in the UK alone. Fuller created and managed the Spice Girls, who became a global phenomenon under his guidance, selling over 38 million albums. In 1998, Fuller's 10 launched S Club 7, which has sold 10 million CDs worldwide, while its three television series to date have consistently topped children's viewing figures, reaching 104 countries. In 2001, Simon Fuller's 19TV created and produced the television phenomenon "Pop Idol" and in 2002, AMERICAN IDOL. "Pop Idol" launched the singing careers of Will Young and Gareth Gates in the UK, while AMERICAN IDOL did the same for Kelly Clarkson, Ruben Studdard and Clay Aiken in the United States. All of these artists are managed by Fuller's 19 Management.

SOURCE Tribune Entertainment





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