TV Guide Network acquires 'Weeds'

Showtime series to begin airing on cable network in Sept.

TV Guide Network has acquired the off-network rights to Showtime comedy "Weeds."

"Weeds," produced by Lionsgate, majority owner of TV Guide, will begin airing on the cable network in September.

The series, now in production on its sixth season, was taken to the marketplace at NATPE and garnered interest from multiple networks before landing at TV Guide for about $250,000-350,000 an episode.

Under the pact, TV Guide owns the rights to the show's first five seasons and all future episodes, including the upcoming Season 6.

The deal for "Weeds" falls into TV Guide's strategy to build the network on "key acquisitions, tentpole events and originals," said executive vp Diane Robina, who joined TV Guide in January.

"Weeds," acquired through Lionsgate's Debmar-Mercury subsidiary, joins recent off-network buys "Curb Your Enthusiasm" and "Ugly Betty."

"Like 'Curb,' 'Weeds' has a huge community of fans," Robina said. "Also, its fans include a lot of young women, opening TV Guide up to a new audience."
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