Inside Move: ‘Pauley’ rivals dispute deal

Journo's skein rubbing gavelers, 'Ellen' the wrong way

Rival distribs are crying foul over NBC Enterprises’ assertion that its talker “The Jane Pauley Show” has landed plum timeslots in New York and Los Angeles.

NBC Enterprises, the Peacock’s syndie arm, recently claimed that NBC-owned WNBC New York and KNBC Los Angeles had agreed to air “Pauley” in early fringe (3-5 p.m.) when the strip debuts in fall 2004.

Paramount Domestic TV particularly took offense, noting that WNBC has an obligation through 2005 to air its gavelers “Judge Joe Brown” and “Judge Judy” in the timeslot.

“I don’t understand how it’s possible since we have a contractual agreement to run from 3 to 5,” said John Nogawski, president of distribution for Paramount Domestic.

Meanwhile, the contention that “Pauley” would go up against “Oprah” at 3 p.m. in Los Angeles rubbed “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” distributor Telepictures the wrong way.

“Ellen” is set to air weekdays at 3 p.m. on KNBC beginning this fall. Given the law of success, “Ellen” could very well be gone by next fall, clearing the way for “Pauley.”

But Telepictures topper Jim Paratore was upset that NBC Enterprises already laid claim to the spot in 2004.

“NBC is fully behind ‘Ellen’; they’re a partner in the show,” Paratore said. “Clearly this is just sales spin. We will determine our own success in the time period based on the show’s performance once it’s on the air.”

Both Nogawski and Paratore said station execs assured them that no promises had been made regarding the early fringe slot. Insiders said “Pauley” may still wind up in daytime on those outlets.

NBC Enterprises declined comment, while reps for KNBC and WNBC were unavailable.

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