DEBMAR-MERCURY SELLS THE FREMANTLEMEDIA NORTH AMERICA-PRODUCED "CELEBRITY NAME GAME," HOSTED BY CRAIG FERGUSON, TO TRIBUNE STATIONS COVERING 40% OF U.S., INCLUDING SEVEN OF THE TOP-10 MARKETS
U.S. Distributor Debmar-Mercury Provides Firm Fall 2014 Launch for Half-Hour
Strip Developed by Courteney Cox & David Arquette's Coquette Productions and Veteran Showrunner Scott St. John
Los Angeles and New York, Nov. 15, 2013 - Debmar-Mercury has sold "Celebrity Name Game," a nationally syndicated pop culture game show hosted by "The Late, Late Show's" Craig Ferguson from co-producers FremantleMedia North America and Debmar-Mercury, to Tribune Broadcasting stations covering 40% of the U.S., including seven of the top-10 markets.
U.S. distributor Debmar-Mercury has provided a firm fall 2014 launch for the half-hour strip, which will air on Tribune stations including WPIX New York, KTLA Los Angeles and WGN Chicago.
"Combining Craig Ferguson's sharp wit with 'Celebrity Name Game's' fast-paced format makes this show a great fit to the existing lineup on our broadcast stations," said Sean Compton, President, Programming and Entertainment, Tribune Broadcasting and Larry Wert, President, Broadcast Media. "We look forward to partnering with Debmar-Mercury, FremantleMedia and Coquette Productions on this project as Tribune continues to add inventive first-run programming, specifically in access and early fringe."
Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein, Co-Presidents of Lionsgate distributor Debmar-Mercury, added, "This huge commitment to 'Celebrity Name Game' from one of the premier broadcast groups in the country illustrates the tremendous value stations place in acquiring quality, compatible first-run programming that can play alongside off-network sitcoms in early fringe and access time periods. As we've proven with 'Family Feud,' stations are hungry for humor. With an exceptionally funny and popular host like Craig, a strong concept and Fremantle's extraordinary track record of producing hit game shows, that is exactly what we have with this show."
Thom Beers, CEO, FremantleMedia North America, commented, "We're thrilled to see Tribune come in with such a solid commitment to this series, showing how quickly they recognized the true magic of this show and every element within it from the uber-talented Craig Ferguson to the dynamically funny Courtney Cox and David Arquette. Together with Debmar-Mercury, we're excited to bring this entertaining series to audiences across the nation."
Courteney Cox and David Arquette's Coquette Productions ("Cougar Town") teamed with veteran showrunner Scott St. John ("Deal or No Deal"), as well as Laura Robinson and Richard Gerrits of North 44 Productions, to develop the fast-paced game show in which celebrities team with contestants to identify famous names, including actors, singers, athletes, pop culture figures, politicians and even cartoon characters.
The project marks the second collaboration between FremantleMedia North America ("Family Feud," "The Price is Right," "Let's Make a Deal," "American Idol," "The X Factor," "America's Got Talent") and Debmar-Mercury. "Family Feud", their first venture, has resulted in spectacular ratings success.
"Celebrity Name Game" is co-produced and co-financed by FremantleMedia North America and Debmar-Mercury, and is distributed domestically by Debmar-Mercury and internationally by FremantleMedia North America. Gerrits and Robinson will serve as producers of the series based on the board game Identity Crisis that they created. Executive Producers are showrunner Scott St. John, Thom Beers, Jennifer Mullin, Courteney Cox and David Arquette.
About FremantleMedia North America:
FremantleMedia North America (FMNA) is the U.S. arm of global media giant FremantleMedia, which includes a distribution arm, FremantleMedia International, a digital and branded entertainment division and a kids & family entertainment business. As the world's largest dependent studio, FremantleMedia's comprehensive global network has operations in 25 countries, creating over 9100 hours of programming a year, rolling out more than 60 formats and managing over 400 individual titles. FMNA and its portfolio of companies produce entertaining and innovative scripted and alternative programs for network, cable, syndicated and online platforms. Their slate includes a diverse range of both critically-acclaimed and award-winning successes including "American Idol" (FOX), "The X Factor" (FOX), "America's Got Talent" (NBC), "Family Feud" (SYN), "Let's Make A Deal" (CBS), "The Price Is Right" (CBS), "The Great Christmas Light Fight" (ABC), "The Tomorrow People" (The CW), "Deadliest Catch" (Discovery), "Married to Medicine" (Bravo), "Ice Road Truckers" (HISTORY), "Storage Wars" (A&E) and "The Pet Collective" (blip.tv), among others.
Debmar-Mercury, a leading media company specializing in syndication, network, cable and ancillary markets, produces and distributes for daytime television The Wendy Williams Show and has U.S. distribution rights to Fremantle Media North America's Family Feud; distributes Tyler Perry sitcoms House of Payne and spinoff Meet the Browns; Lionsgate Television's Anger Management (starring Charlie Sheen and entering off-network syndication in September 2014), Saint George (starring and co-created by George Lopez, debuting in 2014 and in off-network syndication in September 2016) and a new untitled sitcom (starring comedy legends Martin Lawrence and Kelsey Grammer, set to premiere in 2014 and entering broadcast syndication in fall 2017), all for FX; Revolution/CubeVision's Are We There Yet? (starring Ice Cube); and has U.S. TV distribution rights to South Park, Hell's Kitchen and a movie library featuring titles from Revolution Studios. Debmar-Mercury is a wholly owned subsidiary of Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), a leading global entertainment company.
About Coquette Productions
Coquette Productions, founded by Courteney Cox and David Arquette, with development executive Thea Mann, is a television and film production company focusing on creating dynamic, original and entertaining content. Under a first-look deal with ABC Studios, Coquette has produced Cougar Town for ABC and TBS; Daisy Does America for TBS; Dirt for F/X and Mix it Up for WE. Additionally, Coquette has sold projects/filmed pilots for UPN, FOX, CBS, HBO, The Travel Channel, NBC, Lifetime, MTV and Comedy Central. Coquette has also produced the feature film Just Before I Go, directed by Courteney Cox.