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Executives from The CW Network talked up their efforts to broaden the junior net’s appeal at its annual Las Vegas affiliates meeting, and showed as evidence the wide success of prime hits Jane the Virgin, The Flash and Arrow. The CW is hardly limited to young females, posited Mark Pedowitz, network president, and the station chiefs in attendance at the Encore seemed to agree.
“Mark and his team have done an exceptional job of enhancing the position of the network,” said Tim Busch, Nexstar executive VP and co-COO, “with unique and long lasting programming that reaches [viewers] unlike any other network. They continue to do better at it.”
Nexstar has increased its CW affiliate base substantially with its spate of acquisitions, and Busch applauded the network for its willingness to work closely with affiliates large and small. “It’s a mutually beneficial partnership,” he said.
The meeting, attended by about 100, had a special guest—Jane the Virgin star Gina Rodriguez, who mingled and posed for photos with station chiefs after. The affiliates got a peek at pilots in contention for next season, including a reboot of Tales From the Dark Side, and mostly liked what they saw. “You could feel the energy in the room about where the network is headed,” said Mike Stutz, general manager at Gulf California Broadcast Company. “The momentum they have is so impressive; we feel confident about where they are going.”
Stutz pointed to Jane the Virgin as an example of a show that reaches well beyond the young female viewer.
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Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.