News Briefs

Jul 28, 2003  •  Post A Comment

Tribune Entertainment has acquired the exclusive syndication rights, including barter advertising sales, to DreamWorks SKG’s library of feature films, which includes such films as “Saving Private Ryan,” “Gladiator” and “Shrek.” The agreement represents one of the largest domestic television distribution deals in the industry and a first-ever syndication arrangement for DreamWorks SKG’s 34-title package of motion pictures. Tribune Entertainment will exclusively oversee television station and barter sales as well as marketing activities of the studio’s films beginning in fall 2006. Tribune President Dick Askin noted that the DreamWorks SKG package has been cleared on the Tribune Broadcasting station group, representing 22 major markets, including Superstation WGN. “This is the strongest studio package of films in the business, and we hope to broaden our relationship with DreamWorks SKG in the future,” Mr. Askin said.
Maryland Public Television’s Aubuchon Dies
John Aubuchon, a reporter for Maryland Public Television since 1996 and immediate past president of the National Press Club, died July 23 in Washington from lung cancer. He was 57.
Before joining public television, he worked for the Washington bureau of CNN Newsource and for Tribune Broadcasting and the Armed Forces Radio and Television Service. Mr. Aubuchon also reported for TelevisionWeek’s convention television programs and was the National Press Club’s Press Freedom chairman at the time of his death.
Mr. Aubuchon is survived by his wife, Akemi, two children and three grandchildren.
`Jenny Jones Show’ Off the Hook
The Michigan Supreme Court will not review a ruling that reversed a $29.3 million award against “The Jenny Jones Show” stemming from the murder of former guest Scott Amedure. The court said it was not “persuaded that the questions presented should be reviewed.” Last October the state court of appeals reversed a 1999 jury verdict that found the distributor liable for Mr. Amedure’s murder following an in-studio encounter between the victim and Jonathan Schmitz, who has since been convicted of the murder and is serving a 25- to 50-year sentence. The appeals court said people connected with the show had no way of foreseeing Mr. Schmitz’s violent actions.
Fox Sets Fall Premiere Dates
Only six of Fox’s prime-time series will premiere before postseason baseball gets under way in October. “The O.C.” was previously set to launch Tuesday, Aug. 5. Fox’s Saturday night lineup (“Cops” and “America’s Most Wanted”) will premiere Sept. 13 and its Friday lineup (“Wanda at Large,” “Luis” and “Boston Public”) will premiere Sept. 26. The Monday night lineup will debut Oct. 20. Fox’s Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday lineups will debut the week of Oct. 27. The Sunday night lineup will premiere Sunday, Nov. 2.
Kantor Joins Twentieth Television
Susan Kantor has joined Twentieth Television as senior VP, marketing and creative. She will be based in Los Angeles and report to Bob Cook, president and chief operating officer, Twentieth Television. Ms. Kantor’s background in broadcasting and cable includes experience on the studio, agency, network and station sides. Most recently, she served as senior VP, creative director, at MTV Networks’ VH1 in New York, where she was in charge of branding the channel. Previously she was senior VP of marketing at Universal Television Worldwide. “Susan comes to us with a wealth of experience and has launched some of the highest-profile shows in syndication,” Mr. Cook said in a statement.