Entertainment Studios Networks

Entertainment Studios Networks is a group of nine high definition cable networks operated by Entertainment Studios Inc., a company owned by and featuring comedian Byron Allen. The networks were launched in May 2009 through a deal with Verizon FIOS and have since expanded to several other pay-TV services. The networks are also offered direct-to-consumer through a Roku/Amazon Fire TV channel known as "SmartTV.com".

The eight networks include Automotive.TV, Cars.TV, Comedy.TV, ES.TV, Justice Central, MyDestination.TV, Pets.TV and Recipe.TV.[1] All the shows appearing on the networks are produced and distributed exclusively by Entertainment Studios. In addition, Byron Allen acquired The Weather Channel in the spring of 2018, but as it remains mainly under carriage agreements under their old management, along with its own separate corporate structure, is currently not part of ESN itself.

The suite of networks and their carriage on cable and satellite systems have been controversial for several reasons, including that most of the programs seen on the networks are also distributed by Entertainment Studios in broadcast syndication on over-the-air stations, and provide little value for the provider or the consumer (most Entertainment Studios programs over-the-air are mainly carried in non-prime timeslots by its stations). Another issue is the means of how Entertainment Studios has asked for carriage, rather on asking for carriage on the merit of ES's content, but mainly through civil rights lawsuits alleging that providers have not pushed enough to add minority-owned networks to their lineups, and asking for carriage through those means.

As of the end of 2017, only two of the channels in the suite, Justice Central and Comedy.TV, maintained a nightly Nielsen average enough to tabulate a rating, while the latter five 'scratch' and were unable to be rated; the two channels also are regularly among the least rated Nielsen-measured networks in the United States.[2] ESN has since classed the later five networks together as one unit known as "ESN Lifestyle" for ratings purposes to allow Nielsen classification, though this has not been reflected on-air.[3]

On March 22, 2018, Byron Allen's Entertainment Studios announced its intent to acquire The Weather Channel's television assets from an NBCUniversal/Blackstone Group partnership. The actual value is undisclosed, but was reported to be around $300 million; the channel's non-television assets, which were separately sold to IBM two years prior, were not included in the sale.[4][5] Likewise, the regional sports networks Entertainment Studios is purchasing in conjunction with Sinclair Broadcast Group will be operated in a separate venture, Diamond Sports Ventures.[6]

Entertainment Studios Networks
Entertainment Studios Networks
LaunchedMay 2009
Owned byEntertainment Studios
Picture format1080i (HDTV)
Country United States
LanguageAmerican English
Broadcast areaUnited States
HeadquartersLos Angeles, California
  • Comedy.TV
    Channel 382
  • Justice Central
    Channel 383
Dish Network
  • Recipe.TV
    Channel 284
  • Justice Central
    Channel 240
Verizon FiOS
  • Justice Central 186
  • ES.TV 558
  • Cars.TV 599
  • Pets.TV 633
  • MyDestination.TV 674
  • Recipe.TV 676
  • Comedy.TV 695
AT&T U-verse
  • Justice Central 166 (SD) / 1166 (HD)
  • Pets.TV 279 (SD) / 1279 (HD)
  • Cars.TV 280 (SD) / 1280 (HD)
  • Comedy.TV 281 (SD) / 1281 (HD)
  • ES.TV 282 (SD) / 1282 (HD)
  • Recipe.TV 283 (SD) / 1283 (HD)
  • MyDestination.TV 284 (SD) / 1284 (HD)
Streaming media
Roku & Amazon Fire TV
  • SmartTV.com channel


  • Automotive.TV - dedicated to cars from celebrity collections, restoration pros, museums, concourses and auto shows from around the world.
  • Cars.TV - dedicated to notable cars, showcasing the collectors, designers, innovators, and ultimate car enthusiasts.
  • Comedy.TV - comedians performing live and taped, as well as hosted talk and variety shows such as Comics Unleashed with Byron Allen and Comedy.TV.
  • ES.TV - entertainment news, variety shows, and celebrity profiles.
  • Justice Central - reruns of Entertainment Studios' court shows America's Court with Judge Ross, We the People With Gloria Allred, and Justice for All with Judge Cristina Pérez.
  • MyDestination.TV - dedicated to showcasing exotic destinations around the world, and Beautiful Homes & Great Estates
  • Pets.TV - dedicated to pets and pet lovers, celebrating the best in show and the people who love them.
  • Recipe.TV - showcasing chefs, recipes, food and cuisine from around the world.

Carriage lawsuits

On December 3, 2014 a $10 billion racial discrimination lawsuit was filed against AT&T's U-verse division and DirecTV by the National Association of African American Owned Media (NAAAOM) for allegedly violating the Civil Rights Act of 1866. NAAAOM is headed by Entertainment Studios Vice-President Mark DeVitre. The lawsuit claimed that Entertainment Studio Networks were denied carriage by the two providers on racial concerns.[7] In December 2015, AT&T and DirecTV (by then part of AT&T) reached a settlement with Entertainment Studios to carry the networks, with Comedy and Justice Central carried on DirecTV, and Comedy, Recipe, ES, MyDestination, Cars and Pets added to U-verse, along with Justice Central's existing carriage.[8]

The same type of lawsuit, again for $10 billion, was filed against Charter on January 28, 2016, which seeks carriage as part of Charter's merger with Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks into the front-facing Spectrum brand.[9][10][11] Charter and Comcast (which had a separate $20 billion suit filed against them by Entertainment Studios and NAAOM) filed an appeal to dismiss the lawsuit in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit on First Amendment grounds, which was dismissed by the 9th Circuit on November 19, 2018, allowing the two suits to go forward to trial.[12]

See also


  • "Byron Allen's Entertainment Studios Signs Distribution Deal With Vivicast Media". Deadline Hollywood. April 9, 2012. Retrieved April 9, 2012.
  1. ^ SmartTV.com
  2. ^ Schneider, Michael (December 28, 2017). "Highest Network Ratings of 2017: Most Watched Winners & Losers". IndieWire. Retrieved December 28, 2017.
  3. ^ "Basic Cable Ranker: Week of May 28 (Total Viewers)". Scribd. TVNewser. 5 June 2018. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  4. ^ Andreeva, Nellie; Fleming, Mike (March 22, 2018). "Byron Allen's Entertainment Studios Acquires The Weather Channel TV Network For $300 Million". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved March 22, 2018.
  5. ^ Albiniak, Paige (March 22, 2018). "Byron Allen Acquires The Weather Group in $300 Million Deal". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved March 22, 2018.
  6. ^ Littleton, Cynthia. "Sinclair Clinches Disney-Regional Sports Networks Deal, Byron Allen Joins as Partner". Variety. Retrieved 2019-05-05.
  7. ^ Zara, Christopher (December 4, 2014). "AT&T And DirecTV Hit With $10 Billion Racial Discrimination Lawsuit Claiming Providers Denied Carriage To Black-Owned Media". International Business Times. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  8. ^ Littleton, Cynthia (December 28, 2015). "AT&T Settles Byron Allen Racial Discrimination Lawsuit, Picks Up 7 Channels". Variety. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  9. ^ Littleton, Cynthia (January 28, 2016). "Byron Allen's Entertainment Studios Files $10 Billion Discrimination Lawsuit Against Charter Communications, FCC". Variety. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  10. ^ Soule, Alexander (February 4, 2016). "Charter revenue, losses up amid diversity row". Stamford Advocate. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  11. ^ Entertainment Studios, Inc. (March 31, 2016). "Byron Allen's Entertainment Studios And NAAAOM Meet With FCC And Confirm Charter/Time Warner Cable Merger Is Not A Lock Amid Ongoing Investigations". PR Newswire. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  12. ^ Chmielewski, Dawn (19 November 2018). "Appeals Court Clears Way For Byron Allen's Civil Rights Suits Against Charter, Comcast". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 20 November 2018.

External links

Court show

A court show (also known as a judge show, legal/courtroom program, courtroom show, or judicial show) is a television programming subgenre of either legal dramas or reality legal programming. Court shows present content mainly in the form of legal hearings between plaintiffs (or claimants in the United Kingdom) and defendants presided over by a pseudo-judge. At present, these shows typically portray small claims court cases, produced in a simulation of a small claims courtroom inside of a television studio. The genre began in radio broadcasting in the 1930s and moved to television in the late 1940s, beginning with such TV shows as Court of Current Issues, Your Witness, Famous Jury Trials, etc.Widely used techniques in court shows have been dramatizations and arbitration-based reality shows. The genre began with dramatizations and remained the technique of choice for roughly six decades. By the late 1990s, however, arbitration-based reality shows had overwhelmingly taken over as the technique of choice within the genre, the trend continuing into the present. Dramatizations were either fictional cases (often inspired from factual details in actual cases) or reenactments of actual trials. The role of the judge was often taken by a retired real-life judge, a law school professor or an actor. Arbitration-based reality shows, on the other hand, have typically involved litigants who have agreed to have their disputes aired on national television so as to be adjudicated by a television show "judge". Due to the forum merely being a simulated courtroom constructed within a television studio as opposed to a legitimate court of law, the shows' "judges" are actually arbitrators and what is depicted is a form of binding arbitration. The arbitrators presiding in modern court programs have had at least some legal experience, which is often listed as requirement by these programs.These television programs tend to air once or twice for every weekday as part of daytime television and often cost little to create (under $200,000 a week, where entertainment magazines cost five times that). Like talk shows, the procedure of court shows varies based upon the titular host. In most cases, they are first-run syndication programs. In 2001, the genre began to beat out soap operas in daytime television ratings. While all syndicated shows are steadily losing audiences, court shows have the slowest rate of viewer erosion. Accordingly, by the end of the 2000s, the number of court shows in syndication had, for the first time, equaled the number of talk shows. As reported in late 2012, court programming is the second highest-rated genre on daytime television. The genre's most formidable competitors in syndication have been the sitcom and game show genres.


ESN may refer to:

Easton Airport (Maryland)

Echo state network

Edmonton Street News, a Canadian newspaper

Electronic serial number for mobile devices

Entertainment Studios Networks, an American cable network

Erasmus Student Network, a European student organization

European Sensory Network

European Society for Neurochemistry

Salvadoran Sign Language

Entertainers with Byron Allen

Entertainers with Byron Allen (formerly EntertainmentStudios.com) is a television magazine interview series hosted by Byron Allen which usually airs in low-profile weekend timeslots in syndication, such as early afternoons against competing sports events on other stations a television station knows they will not compete well against, or in overnight periods.

The show typically takes place with Allen doing a short introduction of his guests, then showing interview footage of a celebrity at a press junket (typically the traditional hotel room setting where Allen sits across from the celebrity in front of film posters of the project), along with clips of the film being promoted. Athletes are also interviewed, usually in practice or home settings. Music videos are also shown to fill out time towards the end of the program. The program was previously known as Entertainment Studios, named after Allen's network of websites encompassing his various other syndicated programs, which is the present name for the production company run by Allen that produces the program.

Entertainment Studios

Entertainment Studios, Inc. is a privately-held American media company based in Los Angeles. Owned and founded in 1993 by African-American comedian Byron Allen, the company was initially involved in the production and distribution of first-run television series for U.S. television syndication. Under the banner Entertainment Studios Networks, it also operates a group of digital cable and satellite channels, which broadcast a mix of original programs and the company's syndicated content.

In the late 2010s, the company made several major expansions to its operations, including entering the film distribution market, acquiring The Weather Channel from NBCUniversal and Bain Capital, partnering with Sinclair Broadcast Group on its proposed acquisition of the regional sports network chain Fox Sports Networks, and its proposed acquisition of television stations from another minority-owned media group, Bayou City Broadcasting.

List of United States pay television channels

The following is a list of pay television networks broadcasting or receivable in the United States, organized by genre. Some television providers use one or more channel slots for video on demand.

Local Now

Local Now (stylized as "local now") is an American news/information and weather-oriented subscription television network that is owned by The Weather Group, LLC, a subsidiary of Entertainment Studios. A spinoff of The Weather Channel intended for subscribers of over-the-top multichannel video programming distributors, Local Now cycles the latest news and information that's dedicated to the local area.

In addition to its availability on Sling TV and FuboTV as well as an app on internet-connected Hopper set-top boxes provided by Dish Network, Local Now's programming is streamed live on the network's website, through OTT content service Xumo and through apps for Apple, Android, Amazon Fire TV and Roku devices. The service operates from The Weather Channel's corporate headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia, maintaining a skeleton crew of three staff members.

MTV Classic (American TV channel)

MTV Classic (formerly VH1 Smooth, VH1 Classic Rock, and VH1 Classic) is an American pay television network owned by Viacom Media Networks. It was originally launched in 1998 as VH1 Smooth, an adult contemporary and smooth jazz channel. It was relaunched as VH1 Classic Rock in 1999 (later renamed VH1 Classic), with an emphasis on classic rock. On August 1, 2016, in honor of MTV's 35th anniversary, the channel was rebranded as MTV Classic, and now exclusively shows music videos from all genres from the 1980s to the 2010s.


Recipe.TV is a syndicated television series from Entertainment Studios which has aired in broadcast syndication since 2002. The series consists of spotlights of acclaimed chefs in various restaurants talking about their careers and establishments and sharing recipes. Various episodes of the series also makes up the bulk of the schedule for the Entertainment Studios Networks cable/satellite channel of the same name.

The Weather Channel

The Weather Channel (TWC) is an American pay television channel owned by The Weather Group, LLC, a subsidiary of Entertainment Studios. The channel's headquarters are located in Atlanta, Georgia. Launched on May 2, 1982, the channel broadcasts weather forecasts and weather-related news and analysis, along with documentaries and entertainment programming related to weather. A sister network, Weatherscan, is a digital cable and satellite service that offers 24-hour automated local forecasts and radar imagery.

The Weather Channel's former parent company, The Weather Company (part of IBM since 2016), also provides forecasts for terrestrial and satellite radio stations, newspapers, mobile apps and websites, including an extensive online presence at weather.com. The Weather Channel continues to license its brand assets and weather data from IBM.As of September 2018, The Weather Channel was received by approximately 79.128 million households that subscribe to a pay television service throughout the United States.


Weatherscan is an American digital cable and satellite television network that is owned by Byron Allen's Entertainment Studios. A spinoff of The Weather Channel, Weatherscan features uninterrupted local weather information in graphical format on a continuous loop that is generated by an IntelliStar unit installed at the cable provider's headend; unlike The Weather Channel, Weatherscan does not feature on-air talent of any kind.

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