Weigel to launch Start TV digital network with CBS Television Stations

Start TV

From the folks who brought you Me-TV, H&I and the Decades Network, now comes Start TV, a new digital network featuring “strong and resourceful female leading characters” in a lineup of procedural dramas.

Chicago-based Weigel Broadcasting unveiled plans for the new network Wednesday in conjunction with the CBS Television Stations, including WBBM-Channel 2 in Chicago. Start TV will debut September 3 on CBS 2’s digital tier along with stations covering 42 percent of U.S. households.

Neal Sabin

“We are excited to launch the Start TV Network with the CBS Television Stations,” Neal Sabin, vice chairman of Weigel Broadcasting, said in a statement. “Each of these acclaimed TV series is built around compelling female lead characters and portrayed by amazing award-winning actresses. This is an exciting network concept and great opportunity to present these proven procedural dramas.”

Start TV’s programming lineup will include:

  • “The Closer,” starring Kyra Sedgwick.
  • “The Good Wife,” starring Julianna Margulies and Christine Baranski (starting in January, 2019).
  • “Medium,” starring Patricia Arquette.
  • “Crossing Jordan,” starring Jill Hennessy (starting in January, 2019).
  • “Cold Case,” starring Kathryn Morris.
  • “Profiler,” starring Ally Walker.
  • “The Division,” starring Bonnie Bedelia, Taraji P. Henson and Nancy McKeon.

“Each lead character and series embody a boldness and determination to ‘Start’ leading the way, seeking the truth, solving the crime, and defending the innocent,” according to the announcement.

Decades Network

The new network will replace Decades Network on most CBS-owned stations, including CBS 2 here. In Chicago, Decades will move to the digital tier of Weigel’s WCIU-Channel 26, starting September 3, according to Sabin.

In collaboration with CBS Television Stations, Weigel launched Decades in 2015, focusing on classic television series from the 1950s to the 2000s, along with historical news and documentary programming.

“Weigel is committed to building Decades with our affiliate partners and keeping the network uniquely positioned vs. the other broadcast ‘diginets’ available,” the company said in an internal memo.

Wednesday’s comment of the day: Chad Rubel: Selling stations to the mother of a Sinclair executive is a textbook definition of deception.