Steve Harvey’s daytime talk show to end after NBCUniversal vs. IMG battle

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Steve Harvey’s syndicated daytime talk show “Steve” will end in June.

The writing was on the show’s wall in September last year when NBC struck a deal with Kelly Clarkson for a variety hour of conversation to kick off in the fall. “The Kelly Clarkson Show” will move into the main slots occupied on NBC O & Os by Harvey’s for the past seven seasons.

“Steve” recorded his last episode on Thursday. The originals will air until June and the show will remain on rerun until September.

The disappearance of “Steve” raises the question of whether the Harvey show was a victim of the animosity between NBCUniversal and Endeavor’s IMG Original Content over IMG’s takeover of the show two years ago. seasons.

Harvey’s entry into the daytime chat arena began in 2012 with “The Steve Harvey Show,” co-produced by Endemol Shine North America and NBCUniversal and distributed by NBCUniversal Television Domestic Television Distribution. This show was taped in Chicago and further featured Harvey as host Oprah Winfrey / Phil Donahue, albeit with his signature humor. The show was one of the few new daytime entries to get solid, if not spectacular ratings. This season, it has averaged 1.8 million viewers per week, ranking it 5th among syndicated talk shows behind “Dr. Phil”, “The Ellen DeGeneres Show”, “Live with Kelly and Ryan” and “Maury”.

After the end of his initial five-year contract with Endemol, Harvey chose in 2016 to enter into a deal with IMG Original Content to produce a new version of the show, renamed “Steve”, which moved to Los Angeles from season six in fall 2017. The new show puts more emphasis on celebrity guests and comedic segments. IMG offered Harvey a much larger stake in the series, a higher salary, and more creative control over the production. The deal has caught the industry’s attention as IMG is a sister company to WME, which represents Harvey, raising the specter of a conflict of interest as IMG became Harvey’s production partner.

Executives at NBCUniversal were furious to lose their stake in Harvey’s show after the transition to IMG, even though he remained the distributor of “Steve”. The new version of the show also stayed within its NBC O&O slots in key, crucial markets, but it was no surprise when NBC decided to develop a new high profile show to replace “Steve” .

A representative for Endeavor, IMG’s parent company, declined to comment. A representative for Harvey could not immediately be reached for comment. A source familiar with the situation claimed Harvey did not regret making the switch to IMG. “Steve took a hit,” the source said. “He was still making more money than he would have had with the old agreement.” An industry observer unrelated to the show noted that the fight reflected the tension between influential talent trying to exert more control, with help from non-traditional partners such as agency-affiliated production entities. and private funders, and the renewed concentration of the largest media conglomerates to own the vast majority of content broadcast on their networks.

IMG has spent the last few months researching new stations in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and other major markets to keep Harvey on air in syndication. “Steve” was also sold to cable and digital buyers. The show has ramped up production of digital content in recent months, and there are discussions that Harvey could establish a digital platform, possibly with Facebook, to showcase the kind of comedic and topical segments that have turned out to be. popular on the daytime show.

Despite the disappearance of “Steve”, Harvey will continue to be a regular presence on television. He is the host of Lionsgate’s Debmar-Mercury game show “Family Feud”, and is in demand as the emcee for many specials, including the annual Miss Universe pageant and Fox’s New Years Eve. with Steve Harvey: Live From Times Square. “

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