Sci Fi grabs 'Jericho' rerun rights

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Sci Fi Channel has snapped up cable rerun rights to the post-apocalyptic drama "Jericho" from CBS Television Distribution.

The three-year agreement gives Sci Fi rights to the first and second seasons of the series, which includes an exclusive first run in basic cable for the first six months of the deal.

"Jericho" is set to make its Sci Fi debut with a four-episode marathon from 7-11 p.m. EST on Feb. 11, the day before the show's second-season premiere on CBS at 10 p.m. "Jericho," which will be simulcast in high definition on Sci Fi HD, will begin airing in its regular Sci Fi time slot of 10 p.m. Mondays on Feb. 18.

"Jericho" stars Skeet Ulrich and revolves around the survivors of a nuclear attack in a Kansas town. It debuted in September 2006 to promising ratings but struggled upon its return to the schedule after a three-month hiatus when it had to face Fox's "American Idol."

After CBS canceled the series, viewers launched a campaign to save it, including sending tens of thousands of pounds of nuts to top network executives, who decided to give the show a reprieve with a seven-episode second-season order.

Thomas Vitale, senior vp programming and original movies at Sci Fi, called "Jericho" a "gripping science fiction series."

"Thanks to the passion and persistence of its loyal viewers who saved this program from being canceled, new viewers can now experience this show for the first time on the Sci Fi Channel while CBS continues the story in its second-season run," he said.

"Jericho" is executive produced by Jon Turtletaub, Stephen Chbosky and Carol Barbee.

Sci Fi and CBS declined comment on the financial terms of the deal.
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