The latest from the convention:
– In a coup for small syndie Program Partners, the company signed Marie Osmond to host a one-hour talk show strip for fall 2009. Marie Osmond last co-hosted a talk show with her brother Donny back in the late ’90’s for Sony.
– MGM has decided to bring back Gladiators 2000, a teen-oriented game show that spun-off of American Gladiators in the mid-1990’s and was hosted by Ryan Seacrest (gee, wonder what he’s doing now?) The program’s 39 episodes (originally produced by Samuel Goldwyn Television), will return to weekly syndication in September 2008, to meet stations’ (E/I) requirements (as it did then.)
Meanwhile, MGM is launching an online site dedicated to the original American Gladiators series, which ran in first-run from 1989 to 1996, and originally syndicated by The Samuel Goldwyn Co., which was purchased by MGM in 1997.
In other MGM news, the company announced it is taking over syndication sales of home-improvement series Ron Hazelton’s House Calls from now-defunct Tribune Entertainment. MGM will produce new episodes of the series, and well as nabbing the rights to the series’ backlog of past episodes.
– Litton’s new Storm Stories has cleared 70 percent of the country, earning it a “firm go” for next season. The program will air locally on WGN-TV, with popular weather personality Tom Skilling the likely host.
– Not related to NATPE, but CBS renewed Survivor for two more editions next season, and NBC has picked up Celebrity Apprentice for next season as well.