'Gilmore Girls' meet 'Smackdown'
CW Network to combine WB, UPN in CBS-Warner venture beginning in September.
By Jessica Seid, CNNMoney.com staff writer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) - Warner Brothers and CBS Corp. announced plans Tuesday for the creation of a new broadcast television network, called CW, that would replace the WB and UPN networks in the fall of this year.

The new broadcast network will draw on programming from both WB and UPN, and will be a joint venture between Warner Bros. and CBS (Research), with each company owning 50 percent, officials of both companies said. (The "C" stands for CBS, the "W" is for Warner.)

WB's 'Gilmore Girls' will be one of the shows on the new CW network, officials said.
WB's 'Gilmore Girls' will be one of the shows on the new CW network, officials said.
Are you more likely to watch the new CW Network than either the WB or UPN?
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"This new network will serve the public with high-quality programming and maintain our ongoing commitment to our diverse audience," said Les Moonves, the chairman of CBS, in a statement (see video).

Prime time programming will target the profitable 18-34 age group, officials of Warner and CBS said.

The new network will broadcast such UPN shows as "America's Next Top Model" and "Veronica Mars," as well as WB programs "Beauty and the Geek" and "Smallville."

In addition, World Wrestling Entertainment's "Smackdown," which has been a mainstay at UPN, is expected to play a role in the schedule. The new fall line up is expected to be announced in May.

UPN and the WB have struggled to attract viewers from the four established networks since they were launched in the mid-1990s. But each has its strengths.

The WB has had some hits throughout its history, particularly with younger audiences, having done well lately with shows such as "Smallville" and "Gilmore Girls."

UPN has recently gained some critical acclaim and strong ratings for its sitcom "Everybody Hates Chris," which airs on Thursday nights and fared well against shows such as NBC's "Joey" and Fox's "The O.C."

Both networks will cease operations in September, broadcasting their respective network schedules independently until then.

Dawn Ostroff, currently president of UPN, will become president of entertainment, and John Maatta, currently chief operating officer of the WB, will become chief operating officer of the CW.

The new network will employ a lot of the same people, "but there will be one person where there used to be two," said James Goss, an analyst with Barrington Research, suggesting that there may be more executive jumbling throughout CW in the works.

Warner Brothers Entertainment is a division of Time Warner (Research), as is CNNMoney.com.

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For more from Les Moonves on the formation of CW Network, click here.

--CNNMoney.com senior writer Paul La Monica contributed to this report. Top of page

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Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer.

Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved.

Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2014 and/or its affiliates.