Nothing says Disney like crossover and that’s what the Season 4 finale of Shark Tank (1.9/7) saw last night on the last Friday of the 2012-2013 TV season. Dr. Heinz Doofenshmitz of Disney Channel’s Phineas and Ferb showed up to give the Sharks a pitch last night on the Disney-owned ABC, though they weren’t really biting. With an online dating service looking for some investment plus a grilled cheese franchise in the making too, Friday also saw the entrepreneurial reality series rise. Shark Tank was up 6% from last week’s show and up 19% from its Season 3 finale on May 18, 2012. The 9 PM Shark Tank finale was both the highest rated show of the night and the most watched with 6.57 million tuning in. Preceded by a special Shark Tank (1.2/5) in the 8 PM slot where Happy Endings sat this season, the finale of the unscripted series was followed at 10 PM by 20/20 (1.5/5) The ABC newsmagazine show was down 12% from its May 10 show among Adults 18-49 but up 25% the final Friday of last season. ABC won the night among adults 18-49 and, with 5.720 million watching, total viewers.
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As expected, the CW announced today that the six-episode renewal for Nikita will mark the spy drama’s final installment. The pickup came after Nikita creator Craig Silverstein, who has a hot new pilot, Turn, at AMC, closed a deal for one last short order. Nikita‘s final chapter, which is yet to be scheduled, will bring the series full circle, with Nikita (Maggie Q) once again on the run as a hunted rogue for a murder she didn’t commit as she attempts to clear her name as well as spare the people she loves. The pickup is part of CW president Mark Pedowitz’s efforts to give the network’s long-running series a satisfying ending for fans. Nikita, a very modest performer on Friday night, has had solid digital play and ranks as one of the CW’s top series on social media. It also has been a strong international seller for producing studio Warner Bros TV.
Related: CW 2013-14 Schedule
And just like we predicted a month ago, the CW has renewed all of its existing series. The last to get the nod today are The Carrie Diaries and Nikita. The network is not confirming the sizes of the pickups, but Carrie’s is automatically a 13-episode order as it is a midseason show, and I hear Nikita will return for a six-episode cycle. I had heard that could be the final chapter for Nikita, though if the limited event series format works, the CW may leave the door open to additional installments. The network had been looking to break into the limited series format for the last couple of seasons. Carrie Diaries and Nikita join previously renewed Arrow, The Vampire Diaries, Supernatural, Hart Of Dixie and Beauty And The Beast.
The CW‘s midseason drama The Carrie Diaries wraps its 13-episode freshman season tonight. With its pedigree as an offshoot from one of most recognizable media franchises of the last 20 years, Sex And The City, it was expected to be a slam-dunk. Instead, Carrie Diaries started slow and is finishing its run on the bubble. But while its TV ratings alone would’ve likely pushed the series toward cancellation, Carrie Diaries‘ very strong online play including on Hulu is making the renewal a possibility. What’s more, besides the three shows the CW already cancelled this season — veteran 90210 and freshmen Emily Owens MD and Cult — there is a chance that the CW returns all of its other series including Hart Of Dixie, Nikita, Beauty And The Beast and Carrie Diaries in some shape or form, including limited runs. (The CW’s strongest series, Arrow, The Vampire Diaries and veteran Supernatural, were already renewed in February.)
More than other networks’ series, the online performance of CW shows, most of which are serialized, plays an important part in the net’s renewal decisions. After all, episode streaming provides a key revenue stream for the CW. In addition to commercial-loaded play on the the network’s website, the CW’s current series are available on Hulu under a five-year, $75-million deal, while previous seasons of CW shows are on Netflix as part of the eye-popping four-year, $1 billion pact the two companies inked in late 2011. The Netflix deal in particular represents an incentive for the CW to keep shows on the air longer because that raises interest in previous seasons as evident by such current serialized cable series as Breaking Bad, whose older seasons became blockbuster hits on Netflix.
As it picked up five new drama series, the CW also has renewed its strongest bubble series, Gossip Girl, Nikita and Hart of Dixie. It will be the final season for Gossip, third for Nikita and second for …
The CW has set return dates for its original series, which will go on hiatus next month. The network will roll out its lineup on January 5 with the Thursday duo of The Vampire Diaries and The Secret Circle. The final 13-episode season of One Tree Hill will launch on January 11 and will run on Wednesdays in tandem with new reality series Remodeled, which will serve as a bridge between the two cycles of America’s Next Top Model. Because Remodeled‘s order is shorter than that of OTH, the final episodes of OTH are expected to air with Top Model, whose midseason premiere date will be announced early next year. Here is a list of the CW’s midseason premiere dates:
UPDATE, 11:10 AM: This deal’s more lucrative than it initially seemed. Wells Fargo Securities analyst Marci Ryvicker figures it could be worth as much as $1B for CW. While she acknowledges that “the accounting is somewhat complex,” she says that CBS — which co-owns CW with Time Warner — might see an additional 5 cents a share annually. Lazard Capital Markets’ Barton Crockett says it could contribute 2 cents a share to Time Warner. “The money-losing CW may also retain a minority of the Netflix fee, helping reduce its losses,” he adds. The deal’s so valuable because CW’s young-skewing shows fit well with the audience that streams shows on demand from Netflix. What’s more, Netflix’s payments escalate for long-running series.
Warner Bros Television Group president Bruce Rosenblum won’t comment on the financials but says the terms “won’t be repeated” because “other networks don’t own (as much of) their own content.” This isn’t an exclusive deal in the traditional sense — the shows can appear elsewhere – but Netflix has a narrow right to show entire seasons on-demand from previous years. (Others can license select episodes.) “We know from Day 1 that the syndication on-demand window has been sold, but we also have the ability to sell linear rights down the road,” Rosenblum says. CW shows also may continue to run on Netflix even if the deal isn’t renewed; the online service has the right to keep offering series that begin while it’s in force.
PREVIOUS, 7:55 AM: This one follows the usual pattern: Nothing current — just previous seasons of CW series. And it’s not exclusive. Producers can continue to sell their shows in syndication and to other digital services. No mention of how much Netflix will pay for the programming. Here’s the release:
October 13, 2011 — CBS Corporation and Warner Bros. Television Group announced today a licensing agreement with Netflix [Nasdaq: NFLX] allowing U.S. members of Netflix to instantly watch previous seasons of scripted series that air on The CW from its current schedule through the 2014-15 season.