Fox stations buy “Chicago P.D.” for weekday run

Also: NCIS: New Orleans sold to TNT

The first of Dick Wolf’s three Chicago procedural dramas is heading to broadcast syndication.

NBCUniversal Domestic Television Distribution announced Monday it struck a deal to sell reruns of Chicago P.D. as a weekday strip to Fox-owned stations in eleven markets, for a September 2018 start.

The deal includes Chicago’s Fox-owned CW affiliate WPWR-TV, where the series is likely to end up. Other Fox markets getting the show include New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, and Washington D.C., among others. Terms were not disclosed, but the off-network series is expected to have a 50/50 barter split.

“We are thrilled to bring another Dick Wolf hit to the broadcast marketplace,” said Sean O’Boyle, executive vice-president of syndication sales. “Chicago P.D. is a premiere procedural and is a unique opportunity for local broadcasters, as it is the only off-net scripted hour available to play as a Monday-Friday strip. This series will strengthen our partner stations’ programming schedules the same way the Law & Order franchise has done over the years.”

Chicago P.D. was also sold earlier this year for a off-network cable run to Oxygen.

As yours truly documented on this blog over a decade ago when NBCU’s Law and Order: Criminal Intent became the first off-network drama to be sold in broadcast off-network syndication as a strip in a long time, the genre as a weekday strip is very rare as time periods in the last three decades have been occupied by talk, game, and courtroom shows.

Sold to the Fox O&Os in late 2006, Criminal Intent ran in off-network broadcast syndication from 2007-09 and again from 2011-17, establishing a strong ratings track record with several stations stripping the show in primetime (including WCIU’s The U Too in the final two years of its broadcast syndication run.) The series, starring Vincent D’Onofrio (now Wilson Fisk in Netflix’s Daredevil) and Kathryn Erbe, recently returned to MyNetworkTV to air Thursday evenings.

As yours truly wrote on Saturday, Chicago P.D. films at Cinespace Studios in Chicago’s Douglas Park neighborhood along with two other Dick Wolf “Chicago” shows: Chicago Fire and Chicago Med. The trio of shows were instrumental in increasing film and television production in and around the Chicago area. Premiering on January 8, 2014, Chicago P.D. is now in its fifth season and currently airing on NBC Wednesday nights, where it has been since its inception. P.D. generally averages eight to nine million viewers a week.

In other off-network drama news, TNT announced its acquisition to off-network rights of NCIS: New Orleans from CBS. Starring Scott Bakula, the procedural began running on TNT earlier this month. Unlike Chicago P.D. however, rights to NCIS:New Orleans are exclusive to TNT and will not run in broadcast syndication. Terms were not disclosed.

(An earlier version of this post stated “Criminal Intent” was being stripped on Ion, but as of Monday was removed from the weeknight schedule. )


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