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AEW TV deal term hasn’t been renewed yet
AEW CEO Tony Khan had a media call today ahead of the Double or Nothing PPV. I asked whether Dynamite and Rampage were also renewed as part of a new TV deal in addition to the introduction of Collision.
“The scope of the deal as it is, the length is the same,” Khan said. “And I don’t want to get too deep into those conversations but I would say the length of the term is the same. And this is an addition to what we already put together.”
Khan’s comment contradicts reports leading up to Warner Bros. Discovery’s upfront presentation last week that said AEW and WBD would be announcing a new TV deal at that time.
AEW’s current U.S. media rights deal reportedly expires at the end of this year but with an option for WBD to extend it through the end of 2024. It’s possible WBD has already picked up the option. I asked on a previous call whether the option has been used but Khan declined to answer.
Khan added it was WBD CEO David Zaslav who wanted more AEW content on their networks. “He likes what we’re doing with AEW on TBS and TNT. And it was literally his idea for there to be more AEW on TNT.”
Khan didn’t mention — and admittedly I didn’t include in my question — whether Collision means an additional payment to AEW, which Fightful has previously reported is the case.
Later in the call, Khan said ending AEW Dark and Dark Elevation shows on YouTube was “part of an agreement we have with Warner Bros. Discovery.”
Khan was asked how All In will be broadcast. He said he couldn’t give a full answer to that yet. “As far as where it’s going to air or where it’s going to stream or how it’s going to be available, that’s something I’m still working on.”
Full audio of the call is available for subscribers now.
I will be in Las Vegas for the PPV on Sunday and will participate in the post-show press conference. Assuming there’s time, I’ll briefly call into the latter part of POST Wrestling’s post-Double or Nothing show to talk about any news coming out of the press conference and the event.
Additional news and notes
- Shawn Michaels on the NXT Battleground media call today said, to the best of his knowledge, NXT PLEs won’t go head-to-head with AEW PPVs in the future, according to PWInsider’s report on the call.
- WWE Raw has begun to surpass AEW Rampage for the second-youngest audience among major weekly wrestling shows. AEW Dynamite remains the youngest with a median age of about 50. Raw taking over on Rampage is largely due to Raw’s audience getting younger in recent months, now delivering a median age of about 52. Rampage early on had the youngest audience among any WWE or AEW show, with a median age in the mid-40s. Rampage’s viewer age rapidly got older since early 2022 and leveled off earlier this year after hitting a median age in the early 50s. Rampage’s audience had actually gotten slightly younger in recent weeks, but despite that Raw’s median age has trended younger, at about 52 lately. See the chart below. As old as these median age numbers seem, this is still younger than most traditional TV programs. Based on Showbuzz Daily data, I estimate (based on P18-49 as a percentage of total viewership) the typical median age for a traditional TV program is about 59, or for broadcast networks, a little older, more like 60.
- WWE put out a fan survey recently. You can read the full survey captured in screenshots here.
- I learned yesterday after calling the Texas Attorney General’s office that the office approved the City of San Antonio’s request to withhold the release of information related to the city’s bid to bring WWE Royal Rumble to the area earlier this year. San Antonio requested to withhold the information because bidding for events like Royal Rumble is a competitive process that involves other cities, and San Antonio wishes to compete for future WWE events. The letter, from Texas’s Assistant Attorney General to San Antonio’s Assistant City Attorney, cites the exception that makes it legal to withhold such information if doing so “would ‘harm [a governmental body’s] interests by providing an advantage to a competitor or bidder in a particular ongoing competitive situation or in a particular competitive situation where the governmental body establishes the situation at issue is set to reoccur or there is a specific and demonstrable intent to enter into the competitive situation again in the future.” To take their word for it, expect San Antonio to bid for future WWE PLEs. At a TMT conference on Tuesday, Nick Khan said WWE’s goal is to ultimately get a site fee for every PLE. The letter is filed publicly on the Attorney General’s website, and dated April 28. In response to my request, San Antonio did release ticketing information and emails related to this year’s Royal Rumble and ticketing information related to the 2017 Rumble event, both of which took place at the Alamodome. We reported on that information in March.
- Shares in Yuke’s, the video game developer behind AEW Fight Forever, rose to an all-time high, coinciding with the announcement of the June 29 release date for the game. The stock had already been on a run of new highs since the new year.
AEW Dynamite TV rating
AEW Dynamite last night on TBS, was watched by 846,000 viewers on average, including about 417,000 aged 18 to 49, for a 0.32 P18-49 rating.
Dynamite ranked #4 in P18-49 among cable originals for the day, according to Showbuzz Daily. Including broadcast primetime, it ranked #22.
Compared to last week, Dynamite was up 4% in total viewership. Among viewers 18-49, viewership was up 13%.
Vanderpump Rules on Bravo was #1 in P18-49 overall for the day on cable and broadcast. There was no NBA playoff game last night. The NHL playoff game on TNT was #2, with a 0.60 P18-49 rating.
Viewer counts in thousands, calculated from national ratings, for this week’s episode with difference versus the median of the last 28 days in parentheses:
P2+: 846 (+1%)
P18-49: 417 (+13%)
M18-49: 292 (+9%)
F18-49: 125 (+16%)
P18-34: 176 (+22%)
P35-49: 242 (+5%)
F12-34: 61 (+30%)
M12-34: 125 (+6%)
P25-54: 499 (+14%)
P50+: 386 (-6%)
Most-viewed YouTube videos from Dynamite, as of 4pm today:
Sabu takes the side of Adam Cole & Roderick Strong: 448,605
The main event broke down post-match between The Elite & Blackpool Combat Club: 179,550
The four pillars of AEW will finally collide for the AEW title at #AEWDoN!: 148,942
Taya Valkyrie has her eyes focused on Jade Cargill’s TBS title at #AEWDoN: 90,835
Orange Cassidy & Kyle Fletcher collide for the AEW International title: 90,098
House of Black put their #AEW World trios titles on the line in Las Vegas!: 81,579
Mark Briscoe will call this tag team match at #AEWDoN right down the middle: 76,780
This TV ratings report was written with the assistance of automated programs created by me, then manually edited.
Brandon Thurston has written about wrestling business since 2015. He’s also worked as an independent wrestler and trainer.
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