“Medium” could be on the move.
Negotiations between NBC and CBS Television Studios are said to be at an impasse, leading to informed speculation that the show could be headed to the CBS Television Network.
NBC had been looking to bring back “Medium,” but with a deal similar to what the network negotiated last year: A firm 13-episode pickup with an option to expand the order to 22 episodes later in the season. That’s the deal NBC brokered with CBS’ studio arm last year; the network eventually increased its commitment to a full season.
It’s also understood that NBC is looking for a discount off of the full license fee CBS is seeking. Such breaks have become commonplace this year as networks seek to trim costs wherever possible.
But despite the tough economy, CBS Television Studios doesn’t appear to be in the mood to play ball with NBC. It is holding firm on its desire to get a 22-episode order at full license fee.
Such a position is hardly unreasonable. “Medium” is headed into its sixth season, and it’s fairly standard for such a veteran series to snag a full-season order at full license fee.
But industry insiders believe CBS Television Studios has a strong desire to keep “Medium” on the air, because the studio reaps syndication profits for every episode produced. Allowing the show to die would mean throwing away money.
That’s why industry insiders believe CBS Television Studios is likely planning to move the show to its sister network. The female-led crime drama would be a good fit for CBS, with 9 p.m Friday after “The Ghost Whisperer” a logical destination.
If this is CBS’ plan, the network no doubt would prefer to announce the move Wednesday during its upfront presentation. However, NBC’s rights to “Medium” expire at the end of the week. That could make it difficult for CBS to tout the arrival of a show to which it technically doesn’t yet have the rights.
Reps for CBS Television Studios and NBC declined comment.
SIDENOTE: If “Medium” does end up on Fridays at 9 on CBS, it would be a homecoming of sorts for creator Glenn Gordon Caron. His underappreciated CBS drama “Now and Again” aired Fridays on CBS during the 1999-2000 season.