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Twentieth Nixes Orman for Now

Twentieth Television has nixed plans to launch a daily talk show with Suze Orman in the fall, saying  that it has had trouble lining up enough stations to carry the program.

The syndicator cited "Fewer available attractive time periods in fall 2005 and the current economics of launching a daytime strip."

There's no room for Orman on the schedules of most stations because they're already filled them with other syndicated fare. Sony Domestic Television has also had difficulty lining up space for a talk show starring Howard Stern sidekick Robin Quivers.

It appears the few desirable slots that were available for next season have already been claimed by The Martha Stewart Show from NBC Universal and The Tyra Banks Show from Warner Bros.

Twentieth had cleared The Suze Orman Show in the top five U.S. markets,
split between stations owned by NBC and Viacom. But it ran into trouble finding attractive time slots in the next tier of television markets, which generally and have less available space for new syndicated shows.

Although the Suze Orman project is being put on the shelf, she'll continue to appear on a weekend personal-finance program on CNBC. She's also produced programs that regularly appear on PBS, writes articles for national magazines and regularly appears on QVC.

"There is much greater potential for 'Suze Orman' in fall 2006, or possibly earlier, when a number of highly desirable time periods are slated to become available," Twentieth said in its statement. That could be a reference to the two-year deals for Jane Pauley, which are up in 2006.

Although new slots may open up, Orman is sure to face new competition for those clearances.

King World Productions CEO Roger King has said he hopes to launch a show
created by Oprah Winfrey's Harpo Productions in the Fall of 2006.

Paramount Domestic Television is also working on several projects that could be ready for market next year, including a show hosted by entertainment reporter Steven Cojocaru.