Turner Broadcasting has taken a write-down of $400 million on programming expenditures, reports our good friend Cynthia Littleton for Variety.
The story reports: “Sources say a significant portion of the write-down is coming from two megabuck off-network acquisitions that have been disappointing performers for TNT: ‘Hawaii Five-O,’ from CBS’s syndie arm, and ‘The Mentalist,’ from Warner Bros.
“Turner paid a whopping $2.5 million an episode back in 2009 to snag ‘Mentalist’ rights; the show is about to head into its seventh and final season. ‘Hawaii Five-O,’ now in its fifth season on CBS, is believed to have grabbed about $2 million an episode in a 2011 deal with TNT.”
Littleton also writes: “As recently as earlier this month, former Fox and NBC executive Kevin Reilly was seen as a lock to fill the leadership void at TNT and TBS left by the departures this year of entertainment chief Steve Koonin and programming prez Michael Wright. Now, sources confirm that Turner and Reilly have mutually decided to part ways.”
As Littleton notes, the news about Reilly was first broken by Nellie Andreeva at Deadline.com, which is a sibling publication of Variety. Littleton also says that Turner would not comment on either the write-down nor the executive search.