A major station group has decided to scrap two of the most successful shows in syndication, "Wheel of Fortune" and "Jeopardy!," reports B&C. The group is Scripps, which will drop the shows in the next few months in almost half of its 13 markets.
The station group wants to pare syndication costs, the story reports, and is producing two new programs to replace the syndie mainstays in the 7 p.m. access hour.
Scripps will air "Let’s Ask America," a game show, and a newsmagazine called "The List," both 30-minute daily productions, the story says.
"This is an important step in our strategy to take more direct creative and economic control of the content that serves our viewers and supports our advertisers across the country," said Scripps CEO Rich Boehne.
The programs will debut Sept. 17. The move comes after Scripps worked with a market research firm to conduct a national consumer study of the access hour, the piece adds.
"Let’s Ask America" will feature contestants linked from their homes, who will answer questions about current events. The show is produced by Telepictures and Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution.
"The List" is a newsmagazine that focuses on news and popular culture, and is executive produced by Rick Joyce, formerly of "Entertainment Tonight," the piece adds.
The report notes: “The shows launch in Phoenix, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Baltimore, Tampa and Tulsa. When contracts for other syndicated shows expire in the remaining Scripps markets (Detroit, Denver, San Diego, Indianapolis, Kansas City, West Palm Beach and Bakersfield), ‘Let’s Ask America’ and ‘The List’ will move into those time slots.”