Sony throws syndie curve

Talker nabs Web replay

Sony Pictures TV has engineered a syndication first, giving all of the stations who bought “The Greg Behrendt Show” the right to replay each episode on their Web sites.

Bill Carroll, VP/director of programming for Katz TV, which represents hundreds of stations, said the “Behrendt” deal is a positive for Sony, for TV stations and for advertisers.

Following its run on the TV station, the one-hour episode of “Behrendt” (with the commercial spots intact) will be available as a freebie for the following 24 hours through streaming video for the station’s dot-com sibling.

Plans also are in the works to permit stations to schedule Internet repeats of Sony’s two syndicated courtshows, the long-running “Judge Hatchett” and the rookie “Judge Maria Lopez.”

Sony and the stations benefit because they may be able to attract dollars to “Behrendt” from Madison Avenue, whose ad buyers tend to shy away from ponying up for spots in an unproven show.

“It’s always difficult for a new show to line up blue-chip advertisers,” Carroll said.

Sony holds back 3½ minutes within each Behrendt hour for sale to national advertisers; stations get the remaining 10½ minutes.

Carroll added, “TV stations throughout the country are putting greater emphasis on beefing up their Web sites,” particularly with streaming video of TV shows, which is beginning to draw more viewers to the Internet.

The daily one-hour talkshow hosted by Behrendt, which kicks off in the fall, will focus on relationships, featuring practical advice leavened with humor. (Behrendt co-authored the bestseller “He’s Just Not That Into You.”)

The Behrendt show will be first out of the gate with streaming video. In the fall of 2007, reruns of Warners’ “Two and a Half Men” will include a clause allowing stations to play them on their Web sites, but on a one-week delay.

The main outlet in syndication for the Behrendt show is Tribune Broadcasting, which has an output deal with Sony calling for the studio to develop one fresh syndicated show each year for telecasting on Tribune’s owned TV stations. The execs from Sony Pictures TV who spearheaded the deal are John Weiser, president of distribution, and Amy Carney, exec VP of ad sales.

Warner Bros. is sorting through bids, but has not yet signed any stations for “Two and a Half Men.”

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