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Shipmates finds syndie ports

Columbia TriStar Television Distribution has cleared 2001 reality/dating strip Shipmates in 90% of the U.S.

The syndicator, officially revealing station homes for the first time, has cleared 19 of the top 20 markets, including KCBS-TV Los Angeles, WPWR-TV Chicago and WPHL-TV Philadelphia.Other clearances include WKBD-TV Detroit, KTVK-TV Phoenix and WKCF-TV Orlando. New York still needs to be secured, but CTTD executives expect that deal to be closed shortly.

The half-hour series, which debuts Aug. 27, introduces a couple in each episode and is set on a luxury cruise ship for three days. CTTD executives say they have sold the show in a mix of access, early fringe and late fringe time periods. KCBS-TV Los Angeles is going to double-run the series from 3-4 p.m. PT. - Susanne Ault