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Five Questions for President and CEO Dick Askin

What's the next big trend in syndication?
We see the emergence of relationship-talk as a logical extension of the daytime genre where there is conflict and resolution in a talk-show format. We're starting to see a lot of the traditional talk shows, like Maury
for example, starting to gravitate towards that in their subject matter as a new form.

What show would you want from a competing syndicator?Will & Grace
because I think it has really started to hit its stride on the network and its upside is very strong. I think it would be a fun and very lucrative project.

How has consolidation affected your business?
It has made the entire process more efficient. If you have a project that really does have strong demand, such as Mutant X, you can essentially make three or four phone calls and get to 60% of the country pretty quickly.

Have you passed on any star or show that you wish you had back?
Actually, we have passed on a lot of people and ideas that I have second-guessed myself on, and they turned out not to work at all. So nothing comes to mind, fortunately, because so many projects, especially in daytime, have not worked.

Where will syndication be in 10 years?
It will probably be five calls to five people that will still take six months to get resolved.