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We Aren't Sure What It Is But We Like It Anyway

March 19, 2007 12:00 AM

Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution has now topped the 92 percent mark in clearances for upcoming celebrity newsmagazine "TMZ."

Sure, that's pretty much standard for a series about to go national in the fall, but what's notable about these particular clearances is that the series has managed to hit that level in less than two months without an announcement of any on-air talent or even a clearly defined format for the show.

Blink has learned that among the stations outside the core Fox-owned station group to snag rights to the half-hour strip are Cox-owned KTVU-TV in San Francisco, McGraw-Hill-owned KGTV in San Diego and Sinclair's KOKH-TV in Oklahoma City.

"TMZ," based on the monster Web site that follows the lives of celebrities, will be produced in Los Angeles by Harvey Levin Productions and paraMedia in association with Telepictures Productions; it will be distributed by Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution.

"TMZ" executive producer and paraMedia founder Jim Paratore sees the ease in early clearances as a sign of the times.

"When you look at the success of the Web site, to be able to build a brand this huge in less than a year really speaks not only to the digital age we live in, but also the tremendous appetite people have for celebrity news," he said. "Stations responded to that. In addition, they are looking to build a business on their own Web sites and by airing 'TMZ' they will receive a module on their site that will drive traffic for them."