New Pipeline to Expand FOX Entertainment’s Portfolio of Alternative Programming, Providing Network, Affiliates and Tubi with Fresh, Young-Skewing Content
TMZ Founder and Managing Editor Harvey Levin to Continue with New Company
FOX Entertainment has acquired the entertainment platform TMZ and all its media properties from WarnerMedia, it was announced today by Charlie Collier, CEO, FOX Entertainment.
Under terms of the agreement, FOX will own and operate all TMZ-branded linear, digital and experiential assets, including its hit syndicated magazine programs, TMZ and TMZ LIVE, both of which air on 18 network affiliates owned by FOX Television Stations; the dedicated sports site TMZ Sports and program TMZ SPORTS, which airs on FS1; and celebrity tour operations in Los Angeles and New York. In a significant expansion of FOX’s digital footprint, the acquisition also includes TMZ’s celebrity and culture outlet, TooFab.com, and its flagship outlet, TMZ.com. TMZ provides FOX the opportunity to further market and monetize the TMZ brand across its station group; ad-supported streamer, Tubi; and other FOX-owned platforms.
FOX Television Stations’ in-house syndication division, FOX First Run, will oversee all program sales, marketing and affiliate relations for TMZ and TMZ LIVE, effective immediately. The two programs have been renewed through 2022-23, with TMZ cleared in 99% of the country this coming season and TMZ LIVE cleared in 72% of the U.S.
TMZ Founder and Managing Editor Harvey Levin will remain with TMZ and continue to oversee day-to-day operations for the brand. He will report to Rob Wade, FOX Entertainment’s President of Alternative Entertainment and Specials. TMZ was founded in 2005 by Levin and the late Jim Paratore.
“The unique and powerful brand Harvey has created in TMZ has forever changed the entertainment industry and we’re excited to welcome them to FOX,” said Lachlan Murdoch, Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Fox Corporation. “TMZ has been an impactful program for our FOX television stations and broadcast partners for many years and I know Jack Abernethy and Charlie Collier will find creative ways to utilize and expand this content in effective and compelling ways for our audiences.”
“When I see a breaking celebrity-related story that is equal parts shocking, fun and addictive, I know it’s TMZ,” said Collier. “Whether via broadcast or digital, TMZ has brought its brand-defining energy and sense of urgency to fans across the planet. We see great potential in building upon this franchise by adding new creative ventures with Harvey and everyone at TMZ. Here’s to Harvey, Charles and the team leaning over FOX cubicles for years to come.”
“Harvey Levin created a groundbreaking destination for entertainment news, and for the past 15+ years TMZ has celebrated great success. TMZ will now be more closely aligned with the distributor of the popular content they create, and WarnerMedia wishes Harvey and everyone on the team the best as they venture into a new partnership with the talented team at FOX,” said Channing Dungey, Chairman, Warner Bros. Television Group.
Levin added, “We couldn’t be more charged. FOX Entertainment is opening up a world of opportunities for TMZ to grow our current platforms and expand in every which way!”
TMZ already has produced several specials for FOX Entertainment, including HARRY & MEGHAN: THE ROYALS IN CRISIS, TIGER KING: WHAT REALLY WENT DOWN and UFOs: THE PENTAGON PROOF. All three are currently available on Tubi.
TMZ goes where stars work, live and play and takes its audience into a world where the reality is even more fascinating than the hype. TMZ breaks the biggest stories in entertainment as only it can – with accuracy, irreverent humor and youthful energy. TMZ connects with the public across its broadcast and digital platforms by providing a fresh, unvarnished, and honest take on celebrities and their real lives. TMZ is the first national television show to launch as an extension of a successful website and now has multiple sites and shows, including TMZ SPORTS and TMZ LIVE. In addition to TV and Web, TMZ has an additional way for fans to interact with the franchise – “The TMZ Celebrity Tour.” It’s a show on wheels! The TMZ brand is the most trusted, the most talked-about and the highest-quality entertainment news outlet in the world.
About FOX Entertainment
FOX Entertainment’s 30-year legacy of innovative, hit programming includes 9-1-1, 9-1-1: LONE STAR, THE MASKED SINGER, LEGO MASTERS, THE SIMPSONS, “Empire,” “24,” “The X-Files” and “American Idol.” Delivering high-quality scripted, non-scripted, animation, live content and major sports, FOX won the 2020-2021 broadcast season, marking the second consecutive season it ranked #1. In addition to its broadcast network, FOX Entertainment oversees the operations of FOX Alternative Entertainment, its in-house unscripted studio that produces THE MASKED SINGER, I CAN SEE YOUR VOICE and NAME THAT TUNE, among other series; the award-winning animation studio Bento Box Entertainment, which produces animated content for FOX, including the Emmy Award-winning hit BOB’S BURGERS and new series DUNCANVILLE, THE GREAT NORTH and HOUSEBROKEN, as well as programming for other broadcast, streaming and cable platforms; and Blockchain Creative Labs, a new business and creative unit formed in 2021 by FOX Entertainment and Bento Box to build, launch, manage and sell Non-Fungible Token (NFT) content and experiences, and fungible tokens, as well as digital goods and assets. FOX Entertainment also recently formed the production venture Studio Ramsay Global, in partnership with award-winning chef, restaurateur and presenter Gordon Ramsay, to develop, produce and distribute culinary and lifestyle programming for FOX, its fast-growing ad-supported video-on-demand (AVOD) service, Tubi and platforms worldwide. Tubi features more than 35,000 movies and television series, and news content that’s available in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and Australia.