CBS Television Studios

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CBS Studios Inc.
Industry Television production
Founded Los Angeles, California, USA (January 17, 2006 (2006-01-17) as CBS Paramount Television)
Headquarters Los Angeles, California, United States
Key people
David Stapf, President
Parent CBS Corporation

CBS Television Studios (CTS) is an American television production company that was formed on January 17, 2006 by CBS Corporation merging Paramount Television and CBS Productions. It is the television production arm of the CBS network (CBS Productions previously assumed such functions), and, alongside Warner Bros. Television, it is also the television production arm of The CW Television Network (in which CBS has a 50% ownership stake).

Background and timeline[edit]


  • 1952: The Columbia Broadcasting System forms an in-house television production unit, CBS Productions (a.k.a. The CBS Television Network), as well as facilities in the newly established CBS Television City in Hollywood. Also formed is CBS Television Film Sales (later known as CBS Films) as the distributor of off-network and first-run syndicated programming to local television stations in the United States and abroad.
  • 1963: CBS Studio Center is established in Studio City, California.
  • 1971: CBS Films is spun off as Viacom International, Inc.
  • 1974: The company is re-established as CBS, Inc.
  • 1978: The production unit is renamed CBS Entertainment Productions
  • 1994: Westinghouse Electric acquires CBS.
  • 1999: Viacom merges with its creator CBS.

Paramount Pictures' early television ventures[edit]

  • 1939: Established experimental television stations in Los Angeles (W6XYZ) as Television Productions Inc. and Chicago (W9XBK) with Balaban and Katz.
  • 1943: Began commercial broadcasting over WBKB in Chicago (now WBBM).
  • 1947: Began commercial broadcasting over KTLA in Los Angeles.
  • 1949: The first major studio to establish program syndication as Paramount Television Network (much of which originated from KTLA).
  • 1964: Paramount branched out of broadcasting with the sale of KTLA to Golden West Broadcasters.

Desilu Productions[edit]

  • 1950: Desilu Productions formed by Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball.[1][2]
  • 1957: Desilu Studios is established in Hollywood and Culver City, after Arnaz/Ball purchased the RKO studio lot.
  • 1962: Desilu Sales Inc. is formed as the company's syndication arm.
  • 1967: Desilu Productions is acquired by Gulf+Western Industries. The company becomes the TV division of Paramount Pictures Corporation in July, retaining the Desilu name until the end of that year.[3] Desilu Sales, in turn, merges with Paramount's syndication division to become Paramount Television Sales.

Paramount Television[edit]

  • 1966: Gulf+Western acquires Paramount Pictures.
  • 1967: Paramount Television Enterprises releases 60 titles from their post-1949 feature film library to television broadcasters under the Paramount Portfolio I umbrella package.
  • 1968: Paramount Television, formerly Desilu, is established as the studio's television production unit.[4]
  • 1977: Paramount Television Service is formed.
  • 1982: Paramount Television Group and Paramount Domestic Television and Video Programming are established.
  • 1989: September, Gulf+Western is reincorporated as Paramount Communications, Inc.
  • 1994: March 11, Viacom acquired Paramount Communications, resulting in the formation of Paramount/Viacom as a byline for several of Viacom's subsidiaries.
  • 1995: Viacom launched the United Paramount Network (UPN) with Chris-Craft Industries.


  • 1971: Viacom Enterprises is established for domestic and overseas syndication of off-network and first-run television programs from various independent producers.
  • 1974: Viacom Productions is formed as the company's television production unit.
  • 1986: Viacom switches from a syndicate to a media conglomerate.
  • 1995: Viacom Enterprises was folded into Paramount Domestic Television. The name Paramount Network Television (PNT) was also used for the first time ever (Viacom Productions would also become a division of PNT).
  • 2004: Viacom Productions was folded into Paramount Network Television by ceasing its television operations.

Spelling Television Inc.[edit]

  • 1967: Thomas/Spelling Productions formed by Aaron Spelling and Danny Thomas.
  • 1969: Aaron Spelling Productions was established.
  • 1972: Spelling-Goldberg Productions formed by Aaron Spelling and Leonard Goldberg.
  • 1988: Aaron Spelling Productions acquires Laurel Entertainment, Inc. and Worldvision Enterprises Inc.
  • 1989: Aaron Spelling Productions is renamed Spelling Entertainment, Inc.
  • 1991: Spelling Entertainment, Inc. is acquired by the Jacksonville-based Charter Company.
  • 1992: Spelling Entertainment Group introduces Spelling Television, Inc. as the label for the company's production unit.
  • 1992: The Charter Company becomes Spelling Entertainment Group.
  • 1993: Blockbuster buys Spelling Entertainment Group.
  • 1994: Spelling Entertainment Group acquires Republic Pictures.[5]
  • 1999: Viacom acquires 80% of Spelling Entertainment Group (Such as Spelling Television) and Rysher Entertainment's TV holdings.

Worldvision Enterprises[edit]

  • 1953: The American Broadcasting Company forms ABC Film Syndication Inc. (renamed ABC Films in 1962) as the domestic syndicator of independent programming supplied for the network.
  • 1962: ABC International and The Worldvision Corporation are established as the network's international distribution branch to other countries.
  • 1973: Worldvision Enterprises (WVE) adapted from ABC's original domestic syndication arm.
  • 1979: Worldvision acquired by Taft Entertainment Company (TECO)
  • 1988: Worldvision acquired by Spelling from Great American Broadcasting (successor to Taft beginning in 1987).

King World[edit]

  • 1964: King World Productions (KWP) founded by Charles King.
  • 1999: CBS acquires King World and forms CBS Enterprises, Inc., after which Eyemark Entertainment folds into King World.
  • 2000: After Viacom's merger with CBS, Paramount TV acquires CBS Enterprises, which included King World at that time.
  • 2006: September 26, As part of the corporate restructuring, King World along with CBS Paramount Domestic Television and CBS Paramount International Television forms the CBS Television Distribution group.

Group W[edit]

  • 1961: WBC Productions and WBC Program Sales, Inc. established by Westinghouse Broadcasting for first run program syndication.
  • 1968: October 14, The company is renamed Group W Productions to emphasize the moniker of the parent company which was established five years prior.
  • 1995: Westinghouse Electric acquires CBS and the company is renamed to CBS, Inc.
  • 1995: Group W Productions is renamed Eyemark Entertainment.

CBS Paramount Television[edit]

CBS Paramount Television logo, used from 2006 to 2009.
  • 2004: August 10, Viacom merged the international television banners of CBS Broadcast International and Paramount International Television to form CBS Paramount International Television.
  • 2004: Viacom merged CBS Productions and Paramount Network Television to form CBS Paramount Network Television. Their respective logos remain the same.
  • 2006: When the CBS/Viacom split took effect, CBS inherited Paramount's TV program library, with the new Viacom keeping Paramount's films, the MTV Networks and the BET Networks.
  • 2006: On January 17, CBS Corporation CEO Les Moonves announced that Paramount Television would be renamed CBS Paramount Television as of that day, after merging with CBS Productions, with both the CBS 'eyemark' and Paramount's mountain united in the new logo, and the network division becoming CBS Paramount Network Television.[6]
  • 2006: CBS Corp. merged its TV distribution arms—King World, CBS Paramount International Television and CBS Paramount Domestic Television—to form CBS Television Distribution (CTD).
  • 2009: June 1, CBS quietly drops the Paramount name after a three and a half-year loan of its use from now sister company Viacom forming CBS Television Studios.[7]

The production company today: CBS Television Studios[edit]

CBS Paramount Television was the only CBS division that used the Paramount name and logo in its own name and logo (Paramount Pictures is currently owned by the post-2006 Viacom that was spun off from CBS, which was once known as the old Viacom). All three of its original divisions had used Paramount in their name: CBS Paramount Network Television (the production arm), CBS Paramount Domestic Television (the US distribution arm), and CBS Paramount International Television (the international distribution arm). When the companies split, CBS had permission to use the Paramount name for three years. The contract expired in 2009, and thus the Paramount name is now gone from television for good, after 42 years as a production company (39 as Paramount Television), and before that, the owners of two early television stations (KTLA and WBKB), an earlier production company (Telemount Productions), and part-owners of the DuMont Television Network. The new company exempts programming from the revived CBS Productions, the in-name-only producer of 90210, Melrose Place and Three Rivers, among others.

National Amusements retains majority control of both CBS and the new Viacom. For a short time, many of Paramount's theatrical films were distributed domestically by CBS Television Distribution (the new name for the distribution arm as of 2007).[8] Paramount Home Media Distribution continues to distribute home video sales of CBS shows through the CBS DVD brand.

The studio has an output deal with Australia's Channel Ten, which means that Ten usually gets first airing rights to the studio's productions.

Until recently—in the U.S.—King World distributed its product independently from CBS Paramount Domestic Television, while internationally CBS Paramount International Television handled distribution and sales. As of September 16, 2007 the CBS Television Distribution logo appears after shows that had been distributed by King World.

From 2009 until 2011, all shows produced by the company aired either on CBS or the CW. In the past, Paramount Television produced shows for all networks, but especially had a good relationship with ABC (much as Universal Television had a good relationship with now co-owned NBC). The Cleaner, which aired on A&E until September 2009, was the most recent show from the company to air on a network other than CBS or the CW (which is ironic when NBC/ABC's ownership of A&E is taken into account). This was until Black Entertainment Television began airing new episodes of The Game in 2011. In 2012, USA Network began airing Common Law.

CTS does not directly produce any shows appearing on Showtime, a premium cable television network co-owned with the studio. Instead, sister company Showtime Entertainment handles in-house productions for the network. However, CTD and its international arm do handle syndication distribution for these shows if they ever appear in syndication.

Past names[edit]

Shows produced (starting in 2009)[edit]

Airing on CBS[edit]

Title Years Co-production
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation 2000-2015 with Jerry Bruckheimer Television and Alliance Atlantis
The Amazing Race 2001–present with Jerry Bruckheimer Television and ABC Studios
CBS only handles the domestic distribution, while International distribution handle by Disney Media Distribution.
CSI: Miami 2002-2012 with Jerry Bruckheimer Television and Alliance Atlantis
NCIS 2003–present with Belisarius Productions
Cold Case 2003-2010 with Jerry Bruckheimer Television and Warner Bros. Television
CSI: NY 2004-2013 with Jerry Bruckheimer Television and Alliance Atlantis
NUMB3RS 2005-2010 with Scott Free Productions and The Barry Schindel Company
Criminal Minds 2005–present with The Mark Gordon Company and ABC Studios
CBS only handles the domestic distribution, while International distribution handle by Disney Media Distribution.
Ghost Whisperer 2005-2010 with Jerry Bruckheimer Television and ABC Studios
CBS only handles the domestic distribution, while International distribution handle by Disney Media Distribution.
Rules of Engagement 2007-2013 with Game Six Productions, Happy Madison Productions and Sony Pictures Television
CBS only handles the international distribution rights to the series outside the US, while SPT only handles the domestic distribution rights in the US.
The Cleaner 2008-2009 with Once a Frog Productions
Gary Unmarried 2008-2010 with Ed Yeager Productions, Rude Mood Productions (both season 1 only) and ABC Studios
CBS only handles the international distribution rights to the series, while Disney-ABC Domestic Television owns domestic distribution rights.
Worst Week 2008-2009 with Two Soups Productions, Hat Trick Productions and Universal Media Studios
CBS only handles international distribution rights, while NBCUniversal Television Distribution only handle the domestic distribution rights.
The Good Wife 2009-2016 with King Size Productions, Small Wishes Productions (season 1 only) and Scott Free Productions
Accidentally on Purpose 2009-2010 with BermanBraun
NCIS: Los Angeles 2009–present with Shane Brennan Productions
Melrose Place 2009-2010 with Slavkin/Swimmer Productions
Medium 2009-2011 with Picturemaker Productions and Grammnet Productions
Three Rivers 2009-2010 with Fixed Mark Productions
Hawaii Five-0 2010–present with K/O Paper Products and 101st Street Television
Blue Bloods 2010–present with Panda Productions and Paw In Your Face Productions (season 1 only)
Mad Love 2011 with Two Soups Productions and Sony Pictures Television
Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior 2011 with The Mark Gordon Company, Bernero Productions and ABC Studios
CBS only handles the domestic distribution, while International distribution handle by Disney Media Distribution.
CHAOS 2011 with 20th Century Fox Television
Unforgettable 2011-2014 with Timberman/Beverly Productions and Sony Pictures Television
CBS only handles distribution of the series in the US, while SPT only handle distribution outside the US.
A Gifted Man 2011-2012 with Baer Bones and Timberman/Beverly Productions
How to Be a Gentleman 2011-2012 with Media Rights Capital
¡Rob! 2012 with The Tannenbaum Company
NYC 22 2012 with Tribeca Productions and Post 109
Vegas 2012-2013 with Happy Valley Productions, Tree Line Film and Arthur Sarkissian Productions
Elementary 2012–present with Hill Of Beans Productions and Timberman-Beverly Productions
Made in Jersey 2012 with Left Coast Productions and Sony Pictures Television
Under the Dome 2013-2015 with Amblin Television and Baer Bones
We Are Men 2013 with The Tannenbaum Company and Roughhouse Productions
The Millers 2013-2014 with Amigos de Garcia Productions
Extant 2014-2015 with 22 Plates (season 1 only) and Amblin Television
Intelligence 2014 with Michael Seitzman's Pictures, Tripp Vinson Productions, The Barry Schindel Company and ABC Studios
Bad Teacher 2014 with Gifted And Talented Camp, Mosaic Media Group, Quantity Entertainment and Sony Pictures Television
Reckless 2014 with Sander/Moses Productions
Madam Secretary 2014–present with Barbara Hall Productions and Revelations Entertainment
Scorpion 2014–present with K/O Paper Products, Blackjack Films, Perfect Storm Entertainment and SB Projects
NCIS: New Orleans 2014–present with Wings Productions and When Pigs Fly, Inc.
The McCarthys 2014-2015 with Loosely Inspired by Bambi Cottages Productions, Olive Bridge Entertainment and Sony Pictures Television
The Odd Couple 2015–present with The Tannenbaum Company and Timberman-Beverly Productions
CSI: Cyber 2015-2016 with Jerry Bruckheimer Television
Battle Creek 2015 with Shore Z Productions, Gran Via Productions and Sony Pictures Television
Zoo 2015-present with James Patterson Entertainment, Tree Line Film and Midnight Radio
Limitless 2015-2016 with K/O Paper Products, Action This Day!, Relativity Television (first episodes) and Critical Content (later episodes)
Code Black 2015–present with Michael Seitzman's Pictures, Tiny Pyro Productions and ABC Studios
Angel from Hell 2016 with Quill Entertainment
Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders 2016–present with The Mark Gordon Company, Erica Messer Productions and ABC Studios
BrainDead 2016 with King Size Productions and Scott Free Productions
American Gothic 2016 with Amblin Television
Kevin Can Wait 2016-present with Sony Pictures Television, Mohawk Productions and Hey Eddie Productions
Bull 2016-present with Amblin Television and Stage 29 Productions
MacGyver 2016-present with Lionsgate Television and Atomic Monster Based on the 1985 TV series by Paramount Pictures
Doubt coming 2016 with Timberman/Beverly Productions
The Great Indoors with Run and Gun Productions
Man with a Plan with 3 Arts Entertainment
Pure Genius with True Jack Productions and Universal Television

Criminal Minds and NCIS are the last shows formerly from Paramount Television still airing on network television.

Airing on The CW[edit]

Title Years Co-production
Gossip Girl 2007-2012 with Fake Empire, Alloy Entertainment, and Warner Bros. Television
90210 2008-2013 with Sachs/Judah Productions (season 1 only)
The Vampire Diaries 2009–present with Outerbanks Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television
The Beautiful Life: TBL 2009 with Katalyst Films, Page Fright Productions and Warner Bros. Television
Life Unexpected 2010-2011 with Best Day Ever Productions, Mojo Films and Warner Bros. Television
Hellcats 2010 with Five & Dime Productions and Warner Bros. Television
Ringer 2011-2012 with Green Eggs and Pam Productions, Brillstein Entertainment Partners, ABC Studios and Warner Bros. Television
The Secret Circle 2011-2012 with Outerbanks Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television
Hart of Dixie 2011-2015 with Dogarooski (season 4 only), Fake Empire and Warner Bros. Television
Beauty & the Beast 2012–2016 with Take 5 Productions and WhizBang Films
Emily Owens, M.D. 2012-2013 with The Dan Jinks Company and Warner Bros. Television
Cult 2013 with Rockne S. O'Bannon Television, Fake Empire and Warner Bros. Television
The Originals 2013–present with My So-Called Company and Warner Bros. Television
The Tomorrow People 2013-2014 with Berlanti/Plec, FremantleMedia North America and Warner Bros. Television
Reign 2013–present with Joyful Girl Productions, Take 5 Productions, WhizBang Films and Warner Bros. Television
Star-Crossed 2014 with Space Floor TV, Olé Productions and Warner Bros. Television
The 100 2014–present with Alloy Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television
Jane the Virgin 2014–present with Poppy Productions, RCTV International, Electus and Warner Bros. Television
The Messengers 2015 with Thunder Road Television and Warner Bros. Television
Significant Mother 2015 with Alloy Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend 2015–present with LeanMachine, Webbterfuge and Warner Bros. Television
No Tomorrow 2016-present with Groupo Globo, Electus Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television
Riverdale coming 2017 with Berlanti Productions and Warner Bros. Television

Airing on other networks[edit]

Title Years Network Co-production
The Game 2006-2015 BET with Akil Productions, Grammnet Productions, and BET Originals
Common Law 2012 USA with Junction Entertainment
King & Maxwell 2013 TNT with Shane Brennan Productions
Power 2014–present Starz with Maluwi Productions, Atmosphere Television and G Unit Film & Television
Young & Hungry 2014–present Freeform with Waffle Toaster Productions, Blondie Girl Productions and The Tannenbaum Company
Celebrity Name Game 2014-present Syndication with Coquette Productions, Entertain the Brutes, FremantleMedia North America and Debmar-Mercury
Unforgettable 2015-2016 A&E with Timberman/Beverly Productions and Sony Pictures Television
CBS only handles distribution of the series in the US, while SPT only handle distribution outside the US.
Impastor 2015–present TV Land with TV Land Original Productions, The Tannenbaum Company and All In Vane
Incorporated coming 2016 Syfy with Pearl Street Films and Universal Cable Productions

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Desilu, Famous Players to G&W". Broadcasting: 71. February 20, 1967. 
  2. ^ "Week's Profile: Lucille Ball". Broadcasting: 117. July 31, 1967. 
  3. ^ Patrick J. White, The Complete Mission: Impossible Dossier p. 117, 141. New York: Avon Books, 1991. ISBN 0-380-75877-6
  4. ^ Patrick J. White, The Complete Mission: Impossible Dossier p. 141. New York: Avon Books, 1991. ISBN 0-380-75877-6
  5. ^ "Orlando Sentinel" Blockbuster's Spelling Finishes Buying Republic, Retrieved on May 27, 2013
  7. ^ "If It's Monday, It Must Be CBS TV Studios : TV MoJoe : TVWeek - Television Industry news, TV ratings, analysis, celebrity event photos". TVWeek. May 17, 2009. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  8. ^ CBS Television Distribution Syndication Bible TV Movies. Retrieved May 17, 2009.

External links[edit]