KABC finds its Oprah replacement: Dr. Oz

Ozoprah
ABC-owned KABC/Los Angeles has grabbed “Dr. Oz,” which will jump to the station effective September 2011.

KABC is expected to run “Oz” at 3 p.m., where “The Oprah Winfrey Show” has dominated the timeslot for years. But with “Oprah” retiring her syndicated show and heading to cable, the ABC stations in top markets have been prepping backup plans.

Show, starring “Oprah Winfrey Show” regular Mehmet Oz, launched in Sept. 2009. Fox-owned KTTV has run the show in Los Angeles, where it currently airs at 5 p.m.

At KABC, “Dr. Oz” at least keeps Winfrey’s Harpo Prods. — which produces the medical-themed strip for Sony — alive in that slot.

But in other markets like New York, ABC’s stations are expected to run news at 4 p.m. In Chicago, “Oprah” runs at 9 a.m., and will be replaced with daytime-minded fare.

In L.A., KABC has already aired news at 4 p.m. for decades, and wasn’t expected to expand news even further back to 3 p.m. — hence the necessity for the “Oz” acquisition.

Sony Pictures TV has been selling “Dr. Oz” on a market-by-market basis, which is why KABC was able to grab the show away from incumbent KTTV.

“Dr. Oz” has been renewed on Fox’s WNYW New York and WFLD Chicago. And perhaps to ease the Los Angeles sting, the station group has added the show to its lineup at WTXF Philadelphia (where “Oz” previously ran on CBS’ KYW).

Show is being sold on a cash/barter split. Broadcasting and Cable’s Paige Albiniak first broke the news.

“Oz” deal keeps the show on KABC until 2014. KABC also recently renewed “Wheel of Fortune” and “Jeopardy” through 2014 — which means the station’s key syndie fare is once again wrapped up for several years to come.

Follow Michael Schneider on Twitter. 

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