According to TV Guide 20th Century FOX is gearing up to shop “The Simpsons” around for cable syndication, to the tune of 1 Billion dollars.
Originally aired as a short comedy on The Tracey Ullman Show, FOX developed the shorts into a half-hour spin-off in 1987. Since then “The Simpsons” have broken numerous television records including the longest running American sitcom, the longest running animated American program, and the longest running American primetime, scripted television series.
When the “The Simpsons” was initially sold for syndication in 1993 it was in a unique spot as one of the only animated shows on TV and had original broadcasters wanting exclusive syndication rights, as long as new shows were being produced on FOX. A new deal could present the opportunity for FOX to license reruns to stations and cable channels at the same time.
“The Simpsons” is in its 24th season and has 530 episodes under its belt to date with some of the highest paid voice actors on the planet. Many have speculated whether the show would wrap up on its impending 25th anniversary. The news that FOX is reportedly looking for syndication buyers is adding some fuel to that fire.
FX Cable Channel is speculated to have first dibs on the show. Other potential buyers in the pot are Turner Broadcasting and Viacom, who owns Comedy Central and Nick at Nite.
Source: TV Guide