Confirmed: “Queen Latifah” to CBS 2… and WCIU

As reported here and on other trade sites last week, Queen Latifah’s return to daytime TV snared its first major deal with Sony Pictures Television: CBS’ owned and operated TV stations signed on for the show in sixteen markets. According to an article in Broadcasting & Cable last Monday, Latifah’s show will in fact, be shown on WBBM-TV next fall, where it will likely replace The Jeff Probst Show, which airs at 2 p.m. weekdays, and is on opposite Steve Harvey’s new talk show, on NBC-owned WMAQ-TV.

However, Sony also sold a second of Queen Lafitah’s show to Weigel Broadcasting’s WCIU – Latifah’s original home of her old talk show which ran from 1999 to 2001. It is not known where Latifah would be slotted on the schedule, or if  it’ll air on WCIU or  WCIU’s U Too secondary channel.

Stations sharing shows isn’t new – in fact, both WBBM and WCIU already share Dr. Phil, with the former airing it in early fringe and the latter airing it in a mid-morning slot. In Philadelphia, ABC-owned WPVI and Tribune’s WPHL shared Jenny Jones for a year or so in the 1990’s.

In order to shave costs from its costly Cosby Show reruns contract, Boston ABC affiliate WCVB-TV sold off its rights to the show in 1990 to Fox’s WFXT, while retaining the right to air a single episode a week. Detroit NBC affiliate WDIV and independent WXON-TV (now WMYD) also had a similar arrangement.

In addition to WBBM, Latifah is also slated to air on WCBS in New York, KCBS in Los Angeles, KYW Philadelphia, KTVT Dallas-Ft. Worth, KPIX San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose, WBZ Boston, WWJ Detroit, WCCO Minneapolis, WFOR Miami, KCNC Denver, and KOVR Sacramento – all primary CBS-owned stations. The other CBS stations clearing the show – all CW affiliates – are WUPA Atlanta, KSTW Seattle, WTOG Tampa-St.Petersburg, and WCPW in Pittsburgh.

CBS has three stand-alone (non-duopoly) primary affiliates in Chicago, Minneapolis, and Denver – and they all carry Probst, with WCCO carrying the show at 9 a.m. and KCNC at 3 p.m. Eight NBC-owned stations – including WNBC in New York and KNBC in Los Angeles, are the original launch group and in two-year deals with the show. If NBC doesn’t find a replacement for Probst within the next few months, the show could come back for a second season and might wind up regulated in late-night time slots (past 1 a.m.) on the CBS stand-alones in all three markets.

As for CBS’ duopolies, the odd show out could be The Doctors, which airs in some of these markets. Currently in its fifth season, the talk show could likely be shifted exclusively to the second station in the market, which are mainly CW and My Network TV affiliates and independents. For example, in order to make room for Latifah, WCBS in New York is likely to push Doctors from its weekday 9 a.m. slot and make it exclusive to newly acquired WLNY (Doctors already airs at 6 p.m.) as CBS makes a bid to make the station more relevant in the Big Apple.

In Philadelphia, KYW is likely to replace the canceled Anderson Live in its 9 a.m. time slot with Latifah. In San Francisco, KPIX may target time slots now occupied by Rachael Ray (9 a.m.) or People’s Court (3 p.m.) for Latifah. Ray could also be targeted in Boston, where WBZ slots her at 9 a.m.

In the latest ratings released by Nielsen, Probst earned a 0.7 rating, tied with fellow freshman talker The Ricki Lake Show. and behind Katie and Steve Harvey, two other freshman talk shows. During the month of October in Chicago, Probst drew a 1.1 household rating, and a 4 share, behind Harvey’s 1.9/6  on WMAQ. (Inside Edition and Jeopardy on WLS-TV led with a 3.8/13 and 4.3/14, respectively.) Probst was down a whopping 52 percent from what Judge Judy earned in the time period for WBBM in October 2011.

Finally, both Doctors and Probst are distributed by CBS Television Distribution – which like some of the stations these two shows air on, is owned by CBS Corp. Even with the vertical integration connection, it is by no means guarantees a prime clearance for CBS syndicated product on a CBS-owned station.

Queen Latifah’s new show already has a website up and running, but its a placeholder site until more information is divulged about the show in a few months. To view the site, click here.

(Ratings information supplied by Katz Media.)

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