Oprah Winfrey’s OWN project received $46 million from its parent company, Discovery, in the last quarter of 2010 and will get $50 million over 2011–on top of their initial $189 million investment. Oprah’s network has suffered from a great number of reruns–and lack of original programming–that have kept its earnings relatively depressed. As new programming, including Rosie O’Donnell’s upcoming talk show, airs, the network seeks to maintain its brand–Oprah!–and advertiser commitments while building its audience.
As a programmer and producer, not all Oprah touches turns to gold: while Doctors Oz and Phil both have done very well in syndication, Nate Berkus’s ratings have struggled to the degree that Dr. Oz engaged in a “crossover episode.” One imagines that the end of her own daily show, in May, will come as a welcome respite–to allow her to organize the rest of her kingdom.
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