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Paramount Domestic Television
IndustryTelevision distribution
Broadcast syndication
PredecessorParamount Television Domestic Syndication
Founded1982; 40 years ago (1982)
DefunctMay 28, 2006; 16 years ago (2006-05-28)
FateRebranded as CBS Paramount Domestic Television, then combined with King World to form CBS Television Distribution, which later rebranded as CBS Media Ventures
ParentGulf+Western (1982–1989)
Paramount Communications (1989–1994)
Viacom (1994–2006)
CBS Corporation (1997-2000, 2006)

Paramount Domestic Television (PDT) was the television distribution arm of American television production company Paramount Television, once the TV arm of Paramount Pictures. It was formed in 1982 originally as Paramount Domestic Television and Video Programming, the successor to Paramount Television Domestic Distribution, Paramount Television Sales, and Desilu Sales.


Initially, it distributed the back library of Paramount Television and the post-1960 shows by Desilu, and several first-run syndicated shows. Originally, the company (like other sister companies sharing the Paramount name) was owned by Gulf+Western, which was reincorporated as Paramount Communications in 1989.

In 1987, it entered into an agreement with Tribune Entertainment Company whereby Paramount would distribute Geraldo, with Tribune producing. In 1989, both Tribune and Paramount worked again on The Joan Rivers Show, Paramount distributing the program and Tribune producing the series.[1] Also that year, Paramount Domestic Television made its first foray into late-night television with the debut of The Arsenio Hall Show, hosted by Arsenio Hall himself.[2] In 1990, Tribune and Paramount parted ways, with Tribune handling sales of the show in-house.[3] In 1990, Maury Povich signed them to an exclusive pact with the studio.[4] He then developed the talk show, which was aired from 1991 to 1998.

After that company was sold to Viacom in 1994, it absorbed the distribution functions of Viacom Enterprises the next year. Viacom had distributed the classic CBS library which included the pre-1960 Desilu library, alongside series from Viacom Productions and Carsey-Werner Productions library (Paramount lost the rights to the latter library in late 1994 when Carsey-Werner formed its own in-house distribution unit).[5]

PDT also gained syndication rights to series from MTV Networks with the Viacom merger, though these have rarely been seen in syndication. Shortly after The Arsenio Hall Show was cancelled following the acquisition of Viacom, Paramount began distributing and producing MTV's The Jon Stewart Show for the syndication market.[6] In 1987, Coca-Cola Telecommunications teamed up with Paramount Domestic Television (PDT), and Orbis Communications to form International Advertising Sales, which handled advertising of such programs produced by PDT, Orbis and Coca-Cola Telecommunications, including future programming for Merv Griffin Enterprises.[7]

MCA Television and Paramount Domestic Television (PDT) had formed Premier Advertiser Sales, a joint venture created for the sale of advertising for their existing syndicated programs in September 1989. As a possible outgrowth of this sales joint venture, MCA and Paramount began plans for a new network, Premier Program Service.[8]

In 1999, Viacom acquired several other television production firms such as Spelling Entertainment Group (which owned Spelling Television, Worldvision Enterprises, Republic Pictures Television, and Big Ticket Entertainment) and Rysher Entertainment (or at least its library). As a result, the size of Paramount's television library more than tripled, giving PDT a slew of new series to distribute, and included was the distribution rights to Judge Judy and Judge Joe Brown.[9] In 2002, it struck a deal with HDNet to distribute content that was meant to be short for HDTV.[10][11]

After Viacom split into two companies – one called Viacom and the other CBS Corporation – Paramount's television operations became part of the latter company. As a result, Paramount Domestic Television became CBS Paramount Domestic Television. That was in turn merged with King World Productions in 2007 to become CBS Television Distribution (CTD). However, because National Amusements retains majority control of both CBS and the new Viacom, CBS programs (including those under the original Paramount Television name) are still distributed under the Paramount Home Entertainment label in conjunction with CBS DVD/Blu-ray. However, some former Paramount programs, such as Entertainment Tonight, then moved from being produced at the Paramount lot to CBS facilities.

Currently, syndication rights to Paramount's theatrical film library lie with Trifecta Entertainment & Media.

List of first-run syndicated series from Paramount Domestic Television


Off-network shows

Talk shows


Courtroom shows

Scripted comedy/drama shows

Reality shows

Game shows

Music shows


  1. ^ "Development of new syndicated shows underway" (PDF). Broadcasting. October 24, 1988. Retrieved November 11, 2021.
  2. ^ "Paramount readies late night show with Arsenio Hall" (PDF). Broadcasting. August 15, 1988. Retrieved November 11, 2021.
  3. ^ "Tribune, Paramount part company" (PDF). Broadcasting. October 1, 1990. Retrieved November 11, 2021.
  4. ^ "Povich to end Fox 'Affair'" (PDF). Broadcasting. May 21, 1990. Retrieved October 11, 2021.
  5. ^ "Carsey-Werner arms for syndication" (PDF). Broadcasting. December 19, 1994. Retrieved September 5, 2021.
  6. ^ "Paramount folds Arsenio Hall Show" (PDF). Broadcasting. April 25, 1994. Retrieved October 7, 2021.
  7. ^ "Coke & Paramount Name Barter Unit". Variety. March 18, 1987. pp. 39, 64.
  8. ^ Stevenson, Richard W. (October 20, 1989). "Plan Seen For Another TV Network". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved April 22, 2015.((cite news)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  9. ^ Schlosser, Joe (June 28, 1999). "Paramount bulks up" (PDF). Broadcasting. Retrieved November 6, 2021.
  10. ^ Bloom, David (December 15, 2002). "HDNet channels Par fare". Variety. Retrieved October 3, 2021.
  11. ^ "HDNet Scores HD Rights To Paramount TV Series". TWICE. December 13, 2002. Retrieved October 3, 2021.