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'Wendy Williams' Comes to Bounce

African-American multicast network Bounce will air The Wendy Williams Show, produced and distributed by Lionsgate’s Debmar-Mercury, in a day-and-date repurposing deal, the network said Thursday.

The deal marks the first such “repurposing” arrangement for a multicast network, said Bounce, which is available in more than 99 million homes across the country and in 95% of all African-American TV homes.

“This is really a watershed moment for our new generation of broadcast networks. Studios and distributors are recognizing that networks like Bounce deliver a significant scale of audience and key demos, returning the same value that a cable network would bring as a repurpose partner,” said Jonathan Katz, president and chief executive officer of Katz Networks, which operates Bounce.

The series, starring former drive-time radio deejay Williams, will start airing on Bounce on Monday, March 5 at 11 p.m./8 p.m. ET/PT after it airs in syndication earlier in the day.

“Bounce offers a great home for African-American programming and Wendy,” said Debmar-Mercury Co-Presidents Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein in a statement. “We are a company all about firsts, and are very pleased to make this historic multicast network repurposing deal with our friends at Scripps’ Katz Networks.”

Wendy Williams airs on Fox-owned television stations in the nation’s largest markets, including New York and Los Angeles.

This week, Williams took a rare few days off after experiencing flu symptoms, although she assured her fans in a video posted on Instagram that she was just “taking a few days off to get myself together. Cause I’m a thoroughbred. I have not taken off since we started the show.”

On Halloween, Williams fainted on-air after overheating in her Statue of Liberty costume, but she rallied to finish the episode.