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‘Wiseguy’ recruited by Court TV for 32 months

Skein to kick off with 14-hour marathon

NEW YORK — Court TV, which has been engineering a big turnaround in the Nielsen ratings by scheduling such rerun series as “Homicide” and “Cops,” has bought an exclusive 32-month window to repeats of the 75 hour-long episodes of Stephen Cannell’s undercover-cop series “Wiseguy.”

Skein, which starred Ken Wahl and ran on CBS’ primetime schedule from 1987 to 1990, will kick off on Court TV with a 14-hour marathon, starting at 1 p.m. Jan. 2, focusing on the story arc featuring Kevin Spacey and Joan Severance as brother/sister mob bosses.

During the marathon, Cannell, who created, wrote and produced “Wiseguy,” will appear with Catherine Crier, an anchorwoman for Court TV, to discuss “vignettes and backstories on the show’s characters and arcs.”

Mary Silverman, VP of scheduling and acquisitions for Court TV, said that after the marathon, the net will schedule “Wiseguy” for 11 p.m. to 1 a.m., every Saturday and Sunday beginning Jan. 8.

After CBS dropped “Wiseguy” from primetime on Dec. 8, 1990, the network slotted reruns of the series on its latenight sked through August 1991. Then Cannell’s TV-syndication division put “Wiseguy” in offnet syndication, selling it station by station through 1995.

After the syndication run, Chicago superstation WGN bought “Wiseguy” for a two-year run on its satellite-delivered signal from 1996 to 1998.

Guest stars on the series included Jerry Lewis, Ron Silver, Stanley Tucci, Patti D’Arbanville and David Strathairn.

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