AMC Networks, Time Warner Cable Reach Temporary Extension, Continue Carriage Talks

 Frank W. Ockenfels 3

AMC Networks and Time Warner Cable are continuing to negotiate a long-term carriage deal renewal for the IFC and WE tv cable channels, but have agreed on a temporary extension to avoid a year-end blackout of the networks.

Spokeswomen for AMC Networks and Time Warner Cable on Monday confirmed the extension, but didn't detail how long it would keep the channels on the air. They also didn't comment on the state of negotiations about a new longer-term carriage deal.

TW Cable's right to carry IFC, home to such shows as Fred Armisen's Portlandia and The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret, and WE tv, which airs Braxton Family Values, was scheduled to expire at the start of 2013.

The flagship AMC network, home of Mad Men and The Walking Dead, is not part of the discussions since TW Cable has a separate carriage deal for it.

The news of the extension and continued talks came as Viacom and Cablevision Systems faced a year-end deadline to renew their current carriage agreement for Viacom's suite of channels, including Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and MTV.

Led by CEO Glenn Britt, TW Cable has taken a tougher stance against cable networks group. At a recent investor conference, he said the cable operator could drop underperforming networks or push them to different tiers.

AMC Networks, led by CEO Josh Sapan, recently struck new carriage deals with Verizon's FiOS TV, AT&T's U-Verse and satellite TV firm Dish Network.

Email: Georg.Szalai@thr.com
Twitter: @georgszalai

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