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Fox Entertainment buys TMZ from WarnerMedia for undisclosed sum

Fox Entertainment has acquired US entertainment brand TMZ from AT&T-owned WarnerMedia.

Lachlan Murdoch

Under the deal, which has been rumoured for about a month, Fox has purchased all TMZ-branded media properties, including its linear, digital and experiential operations.

Financial terms were not disclosed, but reports have the deal pegged at less than US$50m.

The acquired assets include syndicated magazine programmes TMZ and TMZ LIVE, which air on 18 network affiliates owned by Fox Television Stations, the sports site TMZ Sports and TV show TMZ Sports (FS1), plus its celebrity tour operations in Los Angeles and New York.

Also part of the deal is TMZ’s main website,, and its celebrity and culture publication

Fox First Run, the in-house syndication division of Fox Television Stations, will oversee all programme sales and marketing for TMZ and TMZ LIVE, both of which have been renewed through 2022/23.

Managing editor Harvey Levin, who co-founded TMZ in 2005 with the late Jim Paratore, will stay with the brand and continue to have oversight of day-to-day operations. He will now report to Fox Entertainment’s president of alternative entertainment and specials, Rob Wade.

Fox said the deal will give it the opportunity to further market and monetise the TMZ brand across its station group, its ad-supported streaming service Tubi and other Fox-owned platforms.

The companies have an existing partnership, with TMZ producing several specials for Fox Entertainment including Harry & Meghan: The Royals in Crisis, Tiger King: What Really Went Down and UFOs: The Pentagon Proof, all of which are currently streaming on Tubi.

The deal comes as AT&T prepares to spin off WarnerMedia and merge it with Discovery to form Warner Bros Discovery. That deal, pegged at around US$43bn, is expected to close at some point in mid-2022.

AT&T also recently announced the sale of Crunchyroll to Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Funimation group for US$1.18bn and mobile game studio Playdemic to Electronic Arts for US$1.4bn.

“The unique and powerful brand Harvey has created in TMZ has forever changed the entertainment industry and we’re excited to welcome them to Fox,” said Lachlan Murdoch, executive chairman and CEO of Fox Corporation in a statement.

“TMZ has been an impactful programme for our Fox television stations and broadcast partners for many years and I know Jack Abernethy [CEO of Fox Television Stations] and Charlie Collier [CEO of Fox Entertainment] will find creative ways to utilise and expand this content in effective and compelling ways for our audiences.”

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