Court TV is back in session.
E.W. Scripps Company (which is Simplemost’s parent company) announced Dec. 10 that the cable channel known for its gavel-to-gavel coverage of court cases is being rebooted more than 10 years after it was adjourned.
Scripps said it has bought the brand assets, including its logo and 100,000 hours of old shows, from CNN owner Turner Broadcasting for an undisclosed sum.
When it launches in May 2019, Court TV will feature “in-depth legal reporting and expert analysis of the nation’s most important and compelling trials,” according to a release. It will be based in Atlanta.
Court TV will air 24 hours a day and seven days a week on some cable systems and be available for free over the air and on digital subchannels in several dozen cities. Katz Networks is distributing the channel and said it has secured agreements with Tribune, Scripps and Univision group owners.
“Today, while consumer interest in the real-life drama of true-crime programming is at an all-time high, there is no dedicated daily court coverage on television,” said Jonathan Katz, president and CEO of Katz Networks. “We expect the new Court TV to fill that void on cable, satellite, over-the-air and over-the-top.”
Court TV has hired people familiar with the original network. Former Court TV and HLN anchor Vinnie Politan will serve as lead anchor. John Alleva and Scott Tufts, both of whom produced court coverage for Court TV and CNN, are joining as vice presidents and managing editors.
The original network aired from 1991 to 2007. It gained popularity for showing live court coverage of the nation’s buzziest cases, including the trials of O.J. Simpson, the Menendez brothers and Casey Anthony.
Turner rebranded the channel in 2008, changing the name to TruTV, and shifting some court coverage to HLN.
The new Court TV faces a crowded space for crime coverage: Earlier this year, journalist Dan Abrams launched a court-focused digital network called Law & Crime. Crime-centric networks A&E and Investigation Discovery are also highly-rated, regularly cracking the top 10 in ratings of basic cable networks.
Written by Jordan Valinsky for CNN.
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