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Martha breaks out on TLC

Stewart sells reruns of skein to cabler

NEW YORK — A felony conviction and five months in the slammer continue to look like good career moves for Martha Stewart, who has sold reruns of her forthcoming daily syndicated hour “Martha” to TLC.

Cabler will begin airing the program in September.

As part of the deal, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia will develop a 13-part home-improvement series to run on TLC or one of its sister networks under the umbrella of Discovery Communications sometime in 2006.

MSLO will also make available to Discovery’s networks “selections” from its vast library of programs offering lifestyle tips.

“We wanted to get more sampling for ‘Martha’ through a cable deal,” said Susan Lyne, prexy-chief exec of MSLO, referring to the syndicated series. “The landscape is so competitive that it’s important to get as many people watching your show, and many of them might not be available in the mornings.”

The parties declined to discuss license fees, but the repeat of a syndicated series usually fetches $25,000-$50,000 per week from a basic-cable network.

“Martha” kicks off Sept. 12 on TV stations representing more than 96% of the U.S., including NBC-owned stations in the major markets.

TLC will get the “Martha” episode each afternoon between 4 and 6 day-and-date with its morning syndication run.

By contrast, there’s a one-week gap between the syndication run of each episode of “Ellen” and its run on the network Oxygen weeknights at 11. For “The Tyra Banks Show,” which premieres in firstrun syndication in September, the Oxygen gap is two weeks.

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