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December 19, 2007

NBC to rerun cable shows during writer's strike


NBC has figured out a way to bring new programming to network television even if the Writers' Guild continues to strike.

The cable television shows Monk" and "Psych" will begin airing reruns beginning March 2 on NBC.  Six new episodes will air on the USA network beginning January 11.  The same episode will then air as an 8-10 p.m. block on NBC on Sunday nights.


LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - With no end to the Hollywood writers strike in sight, NBC will recycle episodes of the cable series "Monk" and "Psych," beginning March 2.

The mystery shows, which run as a two-hour Friday-night block on USA Network, NBC's corporate sibling, will each return to the cable channel with six new episodes January 11.

Those episodes will then air as an 8-10 p.m. block on NBC on Sunday nights. In addition to the winter 2008 episodes of "Monk" and "Psych," NBC also will have access to older installments of both series.

NBC already is set to bring back crime drama "Law & Order: Criminal Intent," which was relegated to USA this season because of poor ratings, as well as the Web series "Quarterlife."

The broadcast network also has been looking at USA's hot summer series "Burn Notice," but such an acquisition would be trickier as the show hails from Fox TV Studios. (The other shows are produced inhouse.)

NBC Entertainment co-chairman Ben Silverman stressed that the "Monk" and "Psych" moves were not triggered by the writers' strike, which has crippled television production since the walkout began November 5.

"A lot of this we would be doing anyway," he said. "The strike is pointing a flashlight on it."

Still, broadcast networks have been looking to their cable siblings for series they can air in the spring to avoid too many strike-imposed repeats.

The only other network to announce strike-related "repurposing" plans so far is CBS, which will air edited repeats of crime drama "Dexter" as well as other series from sister premium cable network Showtime.

The broadcast networks, especially NBC, have also been exploring acquisitions of foreign series.

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