CBS Buys Lionsgate's Stake in Pop TV Network to Take Full Control
The company acquires the half stake it did not already have in the 'Schitt's Creek' broadcaster.
CBS has picked up from Lionsgate the 50 percent stake in Pop TV that it did not already own. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
"We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished together with our partners at CBS in building Pop into a nationally distributed platform with exciting programming like the acclaimed series Schitt’s Creek. Pop is a great fit for CBS’ portfolio of businesses, and they are the ideal company to take Pop to the next level of performance under the continued leadership of Pop president Brad Schwartz," Lionsgate said Tuesday in a statement.
Lionsgate Television will continue to supply original series to Pop TV, including the upcoming series Florida Girls.
David Nevins, chief creative officer at CBS, said in a memo to staff that Pop TV would end its run as a joint venture with Lionsgate and join CBS as a "fully integrated part of our global premium content company," and be led by Brad Schwartz.
"With ownership under one roof, we also hope to explore more opportunities where Pop can be part of content and marketing initiatives across all CBS-owned platforms. By way of example, Pop has collaborated successfully with the CBS Television Network for several years on the late night companion series Big Brother After Dark and with other cross-platform ideas," he added.
The former TV Guide Channel was rebranded as Pop in 2014. It will now join the CBS Cable Network division, with Schwartz reporting to Nevins, and the channel becoming more fully integrated with the CBS and Showtime creative and business operations.
Scripted series on Pop include the signature comedy Schitt's Creek; the forthcoming Flack, starring Anna Paquin; Hollywood Darlings; and the British import Clique.
Added Nevins: "Going forward, Pop will continue on its path of developing idiosyncratic, comedy-leaning original programming for the network. We also see Pop as another important outlet for CBS-produced content, both original series and secondary runs of off-network and library programming."