NBCU Clears ‘The Office’ Off-Net

Jun 21, 2007  •  Post A Comment

Turner and Fox are opening “The Office.”
NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution has cleared off-net rights to “The Office,” with episodes to start running this fall on TBS and in fall 2009 on the Fox-owned stations.
Industry sources place the overall price tag between $3 million and $4 million per episode for the Ben Silverman-produced series. The deal includes barter for both the cable and broadcast windows.
TBS’ deal for the series includes non-exclusive broadband streaming, on-demand and wireless rights to run concurrent with the off-network telecast rights.
“The Office,” produced by Reveille and Universal Media Studios, will debut on the Fox owned-and-operated stations in the nation’s top markets, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Dallas, Houston, Phoenix, Minneapolis, Orlando and Baltimore.
“In the tradition of NBC’s legendary Thursday night comedies, ‘The Office’ has one of the strongest ensemble casts on TV, a terrific team of writers, a loyal young-adult skew, and the critics are already comparing it to the classic comedies of all time,” says Wallach. “And pairing ‘The Office’ with the great comedies on the Fox television stations will make for a great match as it launches its initial syndication run.”
With the pipeline for off-net sitcoms virtually shut down in recent years due to the popularity of unscripted series and procedural dramas, series such as “The Office” and Twentieth’s “My Name Is Earl” have become more important players to refresh access lineups on stations as well as cable.
“’The Office’ is not only a top-notch sitcom, but also one of the most relatable comedies on television,” said Ken Schwab, senior VP of programming for TBS and TNT. “Anyone who has ever worked for a completely clueless boss, had an inter-office romance or simply worked among an odd assortment of co-workers will immediately get the offbeat humor in this series. It’s a wonderful addition to our line-up, and we’re thrilled to bring it to our audience of comedy lovers.”

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