Judge Judy Sheindlin is heading back to linear TV — again. Amazon MGM Studios and Sox Entertainment have scored a multi-year broadcast syndication deal with station groups in more than 100 U.S. broadcast markets, including Nexstar, Sunbeam, Cox Media, Weigel and Mission Broadcasting, to premiere repeats of Amazon Freevee’s “Judy Justice” in syndication.
This marks a rarity in TV: A streaming show that has been sold in off-network (or in this case, off-streamer) syndication to local TV stations.
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Technically, Sheindlin never left the linear air, as CBS Media Ventures continues to distribute repeats of that long-running hit series in syndication. (Which means, a “Judge Judy” vs. “Judy Justice” faceoff could happen in some markets.)
The run of “Judy Justice” episodes, which has now produced nearly 250 episodes of Freevee, is set to premiere in the Fall of 2024. According to Amazon, the clearance includes stations in all top 10 markets.
“What a full circle moment,” said Sheindlin in a statement. “This continues to be quite an adventure!”
The deal was orchestrated by Sox Entertainment CEO Scott Koondel, who also serves as exec producer of “Judy Justice” and previously worked with Sheindlin and “Judge Judy” as head of CBS TV Distribution (now CBS Media Ventures).
“We are thrilled to bring Judy Justice to linear television audiences nationwide. With Judge Judy Sheindlin at the helm, viewers can expect a compelling and thought-provoking legal experience in high definition for the first time in broadcast,” Koondel said. “I’m grateful that TV station groups have embraced this new innovative syndication model with talent that has been on broadcast stations for 28 years.”
“Judy Justice” first premiered in November 2021 on Amazon Freevee. Judge Sheindlin is joined in the courtroom by law clerk Sarah Rose, court stenographer Whitney Kumar and bailiff Kevin Rasco. The series’ Season 3 launched on on Freevee and Prime Video on January 22, and continues to release new episodes every weekday through April 5.
“We remain honored that Her Honor agreed to go on this streaming adventure with us,” said Lauren Anderson, head of AVOD, unscripted, and targeted programming, Amazon MGM Studios. “Having firmly cemented her place as an icon of broadcast television, Judge Sheindlin took a pioneering risk bringing her new show and brand to a then-nascent service. Not only are we thrilled that her common sense, life skills building approach to justice has been a hit with cross-generational Amazon customers, we are beyond delighted that we, in partnership with Sox Entertainment, are now able to deliver Judy Justice back to hundreds of broadcast markets – and broadcast audiences – across North America. Full circle indeed.”
Besides Sheindlin and Koondel, “Judy Justice” EPs also include director Randy Douthit. and co-executive produced by Amy Freisleben.
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