[12/12/05 - 12:00 AM]
NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution Has Sold Hit Daytime Show "Martha" in More Than 90% of U.S. for 2006-2007 TV Season

[via press release from NBC Universal Television Studio]



"Martha" Improving Time Periods in 17 of the Top 20 Markets

New York City, NY December 12, 2005-NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution has sold the hit new daytime show "Martha" in more than 90% of the country for the 2006-2007 TV season, it was announced today by Barry Wallach, President, NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution, and Sheraton Kalouria, President of Television, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc. (NYSE: MSO).

"Martha" has been sold to a wide range of leading broadcast station groups for its second season, including the NBC owned and operated stations, Hearst-Argyle, Gannett, Scripps-Howard, Viacom, Belo, Freedom, Young, Clear Channel, Meredith and Journal Broadcast Group.

"Martha" finished the November sweep as the #1 new daytime strip, averaging a 1.9 HH rating, according to Nielsen Media Research metered market data. That is a 10% increase over the November 2004 time period rating. "Martha's" year-to-year rating increase is #1 among the new daytime syndicated shows, topping "Judge Alex's" 1.7 HH rating (+7%) and "The Tyra Banks Show's" 1.3 HH rating (-3%). Season to date, "Martha" has improved the time period (year to year) in 17 of the top 20 markets, including a 53% increase on WNBC-TV New York.

"Our local broadcast partners have benefited from Martha's strong return to daytime television and we are excited about continuing this successful relationship with them for many years to come," says Wallach. "The show's fresh and lively approach and mix of eclectic celebrity guests combined with Martha's excellent how to instruction have been a hit with viewers, advertisers and critics alike."

Sheraton Kalouria, newly named president of MSLO's television segment, said: "This is a very exciting time for MSLO's television division. The show is experiencing enormous momentum as celebrity guests join Martha for themed episodes that deliver exactly the kind of crafts, recipes and information that the audience craves." He added: "Our growth is a testament to incredible viewer response, the power of Martha's appeal and amazing station support. Thanks to Barry and his team for all their hard work. They are terrific partners and we look forward to working with them for many seasons to come."

" The spontaneity of working in front of a participatory audience is exciting for me and the viewers," said Martha Stewart. "In addition, I have the pleasurable challenge of teaching many new things to a daytime audience which craves great solutions, ideas, recipes and crafts."

"This is the perfect holiday gift for everyone at my company and at MSLO, said Mark Burnett, Executive Producer. American viewers are glad to have Martha Stewart back on daytime television. It's the same valuable "how to" show that she has always done, we simply added guests and a live studio audience which contributed to the energy. Coupled with Martha's extraordinary talent, our producing team of Rob Dauber and Laurie Rich together with director Bob McKinnon, MARTHA has become a daytime staple. It's been an amazing year for Martha but only the best is to come."

"Martha," the nationally-syndicated, daily how-to series, is anchored by entertaining and informative segments that highlight and spotlight host Martha Stewart's sense of humor and love of fun, people, and projects. Taped in front of a studio audience, the hour-long program's format allows audience members and special guests to participate and interact with Martha.

Featuring movers, shakers and headline makers, A-list celebrities, plus everyday people who've accomplished extraordinary things, MARTHA features inspiring ideas and new projects - from cooking and entertaining, to decorating, and home renovating. Martha Stewart and Mark Burnett are executive producers and Rob Dauber serves as co-executive producer. The series is produced by Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia and is distributed by NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution to over 98% of the country.

About Mark Burnett Productions
Mark Burnett Productions (MBP) is a leading production company in the world of primetime non-fiction television. MBP revolutionized television with hits such as Eco-Challenge, Survivor and The Apprentice. MBP also successfully reintroduced product placement as an integral part of each of its shows and has garnered a total of 24 Emmy nominations since 2001. Mark Burnett was listed as the #1 Most Valuable Player by TV Guide and also in Time Magazine's Top 100 most influential people in the world today.

About Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc.
Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc. (NYSE: MSO) is a leading provider of original "how-to" information, inspiring and engaging consumers with unique lifestyle content and high-quality products. MSO is organized into four business segments: Publishing, Television, Merchandising, and Internet/Direct Commerce. Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc. is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol MSO.

About NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution
NBC Universal is a leader in providing entertainment programming to the domestic and international marketplaces. NBC Universal Television Distribution division is responsible for the global distribution of NBC Universal product to all forms of television throughout the world. This includes distribution of current and library film and television product, including formats and non-scripted programming, in the pay, free, and basic markets, as well as the domestic syndication of first-run syndicated TV programs and theatrical and TV movie packages.

Current and upcoming first-run strip syndicated programming includes The Megan Mullally Show, Martha, Access Hollywood, Blind Date, The Jerry Springer Show, Maury and Starting Over. Current and upcoming first-run weekly syndicated programming includes The Chris Matthews Show, The George Michael Sports Machine, Rebecca's Garden, The Wall Street Journal Report with Maria Bartiromo, Your Total Health and the off-network distribution of House, Crossing Jordan, the Law & Order franchise and much more.

  [december 2005]  


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