The WB has altered its repurposing strategy — for now.
According to Turner CEO Jamie Kellner, it’s unlikely TNT or TBS will telecast repeats of any additional WB skeins next season.
Kellner continues to be a big proponent of so-called multiplexing but admits he’s run into a great deal of resistance from advertisers.
The exec had hoped this season to sell TNT’s second run of WB drama “Charmed” at broadcast-level prices, but advertisers balked.
Next season, the WB will no longer cume the primetime and TNT runs of “Charmed”; instead, TNT will take over ad sales for the show’s secondary run.
“There’s no economic sense in doing it unless advertisers support it,” Kellner said. “We don’t want to fight with the ad community. Hopefully in the years ahead, we’ll take on that fight.”
For now, Kellner has embraced a much more advertiser- and affiliate-friendly “multiplay” approach, starting with the launch of a 5 p.m.-to-7 p.m. Sunday night programming block on WB this fall.
“This is the future,” WB Entertainment prexy Jordan Levin said. “There has to be some give somewhere in order to keep the creative system going.”
Under the new plan, the WB will air 4-day-old repeats of soph drama “Smallville” at 5 p.m. and 5-day-old rebroadcasts of frosh entry “Everwood” at 6 p.m. Unlike the “Charmed” experiment this season, the double runs of “Smallville” and “Everwood” won’t be cumed for advertisers.
“This is a wonderful promo sell to get us going on Sundays,” WB prexy/chief operating officer Jed Petrick said. “This will make the shows more accessible. We don’t think of these as repeats at all.”
Changes Sunday, Thursday
Unveiling the WB’s fall sked on Tuesday at the Sheraton New York and Towers, Levin said the bulk of the weblet’s big schedule changes occur on Sunday and Thursday nights, while the Frog will rely heavily on established entries the rest of the week.
New skeins include the Warner Bros. TV drama “Everwood,” which airs after “7th Heaven” on Mondays; and actioner “Birds of Prey,” from Tollin/Robbins and Warner Bros., which clocks in after “Dawson’s Creek” on Wednesdays.
New comedies include the Pariah/Turner Television update of “Family Affair” and Paramount Network TV/Littlefield Co.’s “Do Over,” both of which air on Thursdays; and Friday entries “What I Like About You,” from Tollin/Robbins and Warner Bros., and Turner’s “Greetings From Tucson.”
Still mulling shows
As for midseason, WB has picked up the unconventional family laffer “The O’Keefes” from Turner Television and is looking closely at the Turner/Primarily Entertainment remake of “The Lone Ranger,” which is about to shoot. Frog also will consider other midseason pickups in the coming weeks.
“We have between eight to 10 pieces we have to consider when we get back,” Levin said.
Gone from the WB lineup are “Felicity,” “Glory Days,” “Raising Dad,” “Maybe It’s Me,” “For Your Love,” “Steve Harvey Show,” “No Boundaries,” “Elimidate Deluxe,” “Pop Stars” and “Nikki.”