Warner Bros, has sold the reruns of its syndicated firstrun sci-fi action hour “Babylon 5″ to Turner Network TV.
If the series, which began on TV stations in January 1994, stays in production for a full four years, TNT will end up paying close to $12 million, arrived at by multiplying the $135,000-an-episode pricetag by 88 hours. Under this scenario, the cabler would be able to start stripping “Babylon” reruns in January 1998.
Bill Carroll, VP-director of programming for rep firm Katz TV, says it’s no surprise that Warners is selling the reruns of “Babylon” to cable instead of recycling them to syndication, because the series has performed only moderately well in the Nielsens, averaging a middling 3 rating and 8 share since it began its firstrun life.
“Babylon” is the second action hour series from Warners to go to a Turner cable network since the merger between Time Warner and Turner became news six weeks ago. The other is “Lois & Clark,” which TBS agreed to buy early last month.