In Depth

‘Wendy Williams’ Sold in 70% of U.S.

“The Wendy Williams Show” is officially set to enter the syndication battlefield, clearing more than 70% of the U.S., including the top 20 markets, distributor Debmar-Mercury announced today.

Calling “Williams” “a firm go,” Debmar has sold the show to stations owned by Fox, CBS, NBC, Local TV, Tribune, Lin, Cox, Raycom, Meredith and New Vision. The show is cleared in 45 of the top 50 markets.

“Williams” was featured in a six-week preview on Fox stations in New York, Los Angeles, Dallas and Detroit in the summer of 2008 to successful ratings, Debmar said.

“Rather than commit to an untested show based on the premise of a five-minute sales tape, stations across the country have eagerly sought out ‘The Wendy Williams Show’ because they know it works extraordinarily well, based on the stellar ratings and tremendous buzz it generated last summer,” Mort Marcus, co-president of Debmar-Mercury, said in a statement.

Rob Dauber, who served as executive producer during the test run, will return as executive producer.

Debmar announced other staffing measures, including the appointment of sales veteran Liz Koman as the show’s executive VP of branded marketing. Former “The Montel Williams Show” production manager Matt Uzzle was named executive in charge of production.

Debmar also signed a multiyear deal with All Mobile Video for the “Williams” studio, which is the same facility where “Montel” filmed.

“Williams” is among a handful of new syndication offerings for next season, as distributors struggle to sell programming to cash-strapped stations. The only other officially confirmed original programming airing next season is Sony Pictures Television’s “Dr. Oz.”

“Williams” is premiering in July.

(Editor: Baumann)
(3:05 p.m.: Added sixth, seventh paragraphs)