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Pearson renews syndie ‘Baywatch,’ game for 2

Beach show continues sans Hasselhoff, 'Feud' returns

Thanks to “Family” matters, Pearson Television is back in the driver’s seat in syndication. The company is all but certain to give a go to two new fall series and has now guaranteed that an old veteran will soldier on for yet another season.

Although most analysts expected “Family Feud” to return for a sophomore run, many doubted fellow Pearson stalwart “Baywatch Hawaii” would come back for an 11th season without star David Hasselhoff. Pearson execs now say the series will return — and the company has locked up multiyear deals to keep “Baywatch” alive.

Despite the loss of the show’s topliner, company exec VP Joe Scotti said that the staying power of the series, both domestically and internationally, will allow the series to continue as “the franchise that wouldn’t die.” Show now claims an 80% renewal rate.

Hasselhoff is leaving the series to star in his own action hour but expects to return for cameo appearances next season.

Upcoming quizzer “To Tell the Truth” also seems certain to make it to the fall sked after clearing over two-thirds of the country. It has gained an access clearance on KCAL Los Angeles for the fall season. Although the celeb-filled gameshow has also pinned down stations in major markets such as Chicago, Houston and San Francisco, the company has yet to lock down a deal in Gotham.

Meanwhile, upcoming court/gabber hybrid “Judgment Day” has broken the 50% clearance barrier, including another broadcast deal with KCAL. Series is still looking for a home in both New York and Chicago.

Scotti said that while standup comedy strip “So You Think You’re Funny?” hasn’t reached similar clearance levels, negotiations are ongoing and the company is confident that the series will hit the airwaves in September despite the scarcity of timeslots.

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