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Universal Worldwide TV may shutter

Sources say Universal Worldwide TV parent Vivendi Universal is looking to close down the three-year-old syndication division, and that Paramount will most likely snap up the syndication rights to its two domestic syndication offerings,
Blind Date and spinoff The Fifth Wheel.

Fifth Wheel is set to debut in syndication this fall, while Blind
is entering its third season.

Sources said nearly every major syndication company has been approached about
buying the shows by Vivendi, which is said to be looking to cut costs by
shuttering the unit.

Universal Worldwide TV was launched in late 1998, when Universal acquired
PolyGram, including PolyGram TV's assets. Paramount has a number of ties to
Blind Date.

Producer Gold Coast Entertainment is also producing Paramount-distributed
new first-run series Rendez-View.

In addition, new Paramount programming chief Greg Meidel, formerly ran
Universal TV.

Universal and Paramount executives had no comment.