Disney-ABC Television Group's ABC Entertainment and the Warner Bros. Television Group announced today that they have reached an agreement regarding the digital distribution of “Big Shots,” “MEN IN TREES,” “Notes from the Underbelly” and “Pushing Daisies.”
Under the terms of the experimental deal – which was brokered by Jana Winograde, executive vice president, Business Affairs, ABC Entertainment and by Craig Hunegs, executive vice president, Business Management, Warner Bros. Television Group -- ABC has the ability to distribute all four series as non-permanent offerings, which includes streaming episodes online and retaining the advertising revenue generated on ABC.com’s Emmy Award-winning broadband player, as well as utilizing the pilots on alternative platforms to launch the shows. The episodes will be available at ABC.com the day after their broadcast premieres. The unique two-year deal allows ABC.com to stream each episode up to four weeks after its broadcast, and in return, Warner Bros. will have the same rights the following year with respect to past episodes previously streamed on ABC.com, and in addition will be able to offer digital downloads of the prior year’s episodes, as well as DVD boxed sets. While Warner Bros. will be able to stream the episodes to unlimited outlets, the episodes will be branded ABC and promote back to the network.
“This announcement reiterates our commitment to keep our viewers and their needs front-and-center as we continue to lead in the digital arena,” said Anne Sweeney, co-chair, Disney Media Networks and president, Disney-ABC Television Group. “This unique agreement, expertly brokered by Jana Winograde and her team with our partners at Warner Bros. will allow us to continue to offer viewers access to their favorite programs via the best video player available.”
“As has often happened with our partners at ABC, we have reached an innovative agreement that allows us each increased flexibility to run our businesses while giving viewers ongoing on-demand access to our series,” said Bruce Rosenblum, president, Warner Bros. Television Group. “First with DVD, then with digital downloads and now via streaming, our studio continues to find new ways to open new windows to serve our audience and grow our business.”
In addition, new episodes of returning series “The Bachelor,” “Brothers & Sisters,” “Dancing with the Stars,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Lost,” “October Road” and “Ugly Betty,” as well as episodes of the new series “Carpoolers,” “Cavemen,” “Dirty Sexy Money,” “Eli Stone” “Private Practice” and “Samantha Who?” will be offered free to consumers on ABC’s website the day after their broadcast premieres. Generally, four episodes per series will be available at any given time.