"NCIS" Drops Anchor on ION Television
Strong and Steady Ratings Winner Joins Gripping Fall Lineup of Hit Shows
(West Palm Beach, Fla. � August 19, 2008) � ION Television, a contemporary general entertainment network, today announced that it will add Emmy-nominated "NCIS" to its primetime lineup on Monday, September 8th at 9 p.m. ET. ION Media Networks, Inc., ION Television's parent company, has entered into a content agreement with CBS Television Distribution for the broadcast syndication rights to the first four seasons of the naval investigators procedural series. The top-rated, hour-long program will air on Mondays and Tuesdays in the 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET timeslot.
"'NCIS' is a high-caliber, highly rated series that will broaden ION Television's reach to target audiences and advertisers," said Brandon Burgess, Chairman and CEO, ION Media Networks. "Stay tuned for more examples of this kind of programming from the network as we continue to migrate to greater mass appeal in 2008 and 2009."
"We're excited to bring a quality hit show like �NCIS' to broadcast syndication and extend our partnership with ION Television," said Scott Koondel, Executive Vice President of Off Network, Cable and Interactive Media for CTD.
"NCIS," the hit spin-off of CBS's military legal drama, "JAG," comes from acclaimed producer Donald P. Bellisario. Revolving around a fictional group of special agents from the Naval Criminal Investigative Service Major Case Response Team (MCRT) of the United States Navy and United States Marine Corps., "NCIS" is more than your average action drama. With liberal doses of humor, it focuses on the sometimes complex and always amusing dynamics of a squad forced to work together in high-stress situations. From murder and espionage to terrorism and kidnappings, these special agents travel the globe to investigate high-profile crimes involving persons and property associated with the Navy or Marine Corps. The popular show premiered on September 23, 2003, on CBS and enters its sixth season on the network this fall.
"NCIS" is distinguished by its comedy elements, ensemble acting and character-driven plots. Leading the NCIS team is Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs (Mark Harmon), a skilled investigator and interrogator who is smart, tough and willing to bend the rules to get the job done. Working under Gibbs is former homicide detective Agent Anthony Dinozzo (Michael Weatherly). Joining them is Abby Sciuto (Pauley Perrette), a gifted forensic scientist; Dr. Donald "Ducky" Mallard (David McCallum), a medical examiner; and Timothy McGee (Sean Murray), a computer genius and crime novelist.
The show joins recent ION additions, like landmark off-network series "Boston Legal" and "ER," plus favorites like "Hangin' with Mr. Cooper," "The Steve Harvey Show" and "Family Feud," airing on ION Television's expanded Fall entertainment schedule. The network is pushing forward with its long-term strategy to meet the entertainment needs of the adult 25-54 demographic with a mix of compelling television series, theatrical and made-for-television movies, specials and sports.
About ION Media Networks
ION Media Networks, Inc. owns and operates the nation's largest broadcast television station group and ION Television, which reaches over 94 million U.S. television households via its nationwide broadcast television, cable and satellite distribution systems, and features popular TV series and movies from the award-winning libraries of RHI Entertainment, CBS Television, NBC Universal, Sony Pictures Television, Twentieth Television and Warner Bros., among others. Using its digital multicasting capability, the Company has launched several digital TV brands, including qubo, a channel for children focusing on literacy and values, and ION Life, a channel dedicated to active living and personal growth. It also has launched Open Mobile Ventures Corporation (OMVION), a business unit focused on the research and development of portable, mobile and out-of-home transmission technology using over-the-air digital television spectrum. For more information, visit www.ionmedia.tv.