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United Artists Television
FoundedNew Years Day 1958
Defunct1982 (1982)
FateFolded into MGM/UA Entertainment Co. Television
MGM/UA Entertainment Co. Television
CBS Media Ventures (The Fugitive only)
Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution
(Turner Entertainment's pre-1950 Warner Bros., Gilligan's Island and Popeye the Sailor only)
ParentUnited Artists
SubsidiariesUnited Artists Associated

United Artists Television (UATV) was an American television production/distribution studio of United Artists Corporation that was formed on New Year's Day (January 1), 1958. The company is remembered for producing series such as This Man Dawson, World of Giants, Stoney Burke, The Outer Limits, Gilligan's Island, My Mother the Car, The Fugitive, The Rat Patrol, thirtysomething, The New Phil Silvers Show, The Patty Duke Show and The Pink Panther Show. In September 2014, the studio briefly returned to full-time TV production under the new management of United Artists Media Group (UAMG), led in part by husband and wife producers Mark Burnett and Roma Downey. With its folding back into MGM Television, UATV was temporarily dormant until 2020 when MGM Television was reincorporated.


UATV was formed on New Year's Day (January 1), 1958, with Herb Golden, former vice-president of Banker's Trust, as its president, and Bruce Eells from Television Programs of America as its top operating executive.[1]

In that same year, UATV purchased Associated Artists Productions (AAP), giving access to the pre-1950[2][3][4] Warner Bros.' short subject library and the 231 Popeye cartoon shorts made by Fleischer Studios and Famous Studios for Paramount Pictures between 1933 and 1957. With UATV's purchase, AAP became United Artists Associated (UAA) and became its distribution division.

In 1960, UATV purchased Ziv Television Programs, including the 20% share still held by board chairman Frederick Ziv and his son-in-law and business partner president John L. Sinn, for $20 million. The newly merged production company was renamed Ziv-United Artists.

UATV had never been very successful in the small screen, having placed only two series in prime time, The Troubleshooters on NBC and The Dennis O'Keefe Show on CBS, both of the 1959–1960 season. This negative pattern continued after the merger. Ziv-UA produced a dozen of TV pilots during the first year of operation, but failed to sell any of them, although Aubrey Schenck's Miami Undercover only lasted one season in 1961.

In 1962, the studio phased out Ziv Television Programs and reverted its name to United Artists Television. In that same year, ABC premiered a successful prime time television film show called The ABC Sunday Night Movie in competition to NBC's successful motion picture program Saturday Night at the Movies. The first season featured releases of many United Artists' films with some episodes containing featurettes promoting the upcoming UA's cinema releases.

UATV had several shows such as Stoney Burke (1962), The Patty Duke Show (1963), The Outer Limits (1963), The Fugitive (1963), Hollywood and the Stars (1963), The Hollywood Palace (1964), and Gilligan's Island (1964). In 1967, UATV was purchased by Transamerica Corporation and, the following year, United Artists Associated was reincorporated as United Artists Television Distribution (UATD). After The Mothers-in-Law was cancelled on NBC in 1969, the studio decided to focus in presenting their movie library on television and rerunning their classics after years of still being unsuccessful in TV production.

In 1981, MGM merged with UA to create MGM/UA Entertainment Co.; as a result, their respective television units combined as well became MGM/UA Entertainment Co. Television or simply MGM/UA Television the following year. The United Artists Television name was eventually phased out around 1983 in favor of the MGM/UA Television banner, although UATV continued itself producing television shows until 1995. In 1985, United Artists Television was returned after Turner bought out MGM, to be headed by John J. McMahon, only to be combined into MGM/UA Television Productions within a year, when Turner sold off MGM/UA.[5]

Return to television

In September 2014, MGM acquired a 55% controlling interest in One Three Media and Lightworkers Media, both operated by husband/wife Hollywood producers Mark Burnett and Roma Downey (Touched by an Angel fame). The two companies were consolidated into a new film and television company, United Artists Media Group (UAMG). Burnett is UAMG's CEO and Downey is president of Lightworkers Media[6] Hearst Entertainment, an investor in Burnett and Downey's entertainment assets, has also acquired a minority stake in United Artists through this deal.[7] Through this acquisition, UAMG held the production rights to Burnett's reality show franchises The Voice, Survivor, The Apprentice, On the Menu, Shark Tank, Beyond the Tank and Lucha Underground.[8] When it was folded back into MGM Television, UATV's current incarnation ended. Although since then, MGM/UA Television was reformed (as of February 2020), most new UATV material is produced either by MGM's digital unit or MGM itself.


United Artists Television (UATV)

Title Years Network Notes
World of Giants 1959 Syndication Produced by Ziv Television Programs.
Tales of the Vikings 1959–1960 Syndication Produced by Kirk Douglas' production company Brynaprod in Germany.
The Troubleshooters 1959–1960 NBC Produced by Meridian Productions.
The Dennis O'Keefe Show 1959–1960 CBS Produced by Cypress Productions.
Men into Space 1959–1960 CBS Produced by Ziv Television Programs.
The Aquanauts 1960–1961 CBS Produced by Ziv Television Programs.
Miami Undercover 1961 Syndication Produced by Ziv Television Programs.
Stoney Burke 1962–1963 ABC Produced by Daystar Productions.
The Outer Limits 1963–1965 ABC Produced by Villa DiStefano for Daystar Productions.
The Fugitive 1963–1967 ABC Produced by Quinn Martin Productions; Overall rights to this show now is owned by CBS Studios and distributed by CBS Television Distribution, due to the buyout of its original syndicator and owner, Worldvision.
The Patty Duke Show 1963–1966 ABC Produced by Chrislaw Productions between 1963 and 1965 and by Cottage Industries Incorporated during the third and last season (1965–1966).
East Side/West Side 1963–1964 CBS Produced by Talent Associates in association with CBS.
The New Phil Silvers Show 1963–1964 CBS Produced by Gladasya Productions.
Hollywood and the Stars 1963–1964 NBC Produced by David L. Wolper.
Lawbreakers 1963–1964 Syndication Produced by Rapier Productions Incorporated.
Gilligan's Island 1964–1967 CBS United Artists Television's stake in this show now is owned by Turner Entertainment Co. and distributed by Warner Bros. Television, in co-production with Gladasya Productions.
My Mother the Car 1965–1966 NBC Produced by Cottage Industries Incorporated.
Mona McCluskey 1965–1966 NBC Produced by McCadden Productions.
O.K., Crackerby! 1965–1966 ABC
The Milton Berle Show 1966–1967 ABC
The Rat Patrol 1966–1968 ABC Produced by Mirisch-Rich Television Productions and Tom Gries Productions.
Hey, Landlord 1966–1967 NBC Produced by Mirisch-Rich Television Productions.
It's About Time 1966–1967 CBS Produced by Gladasya Productions and Redwood Productions.
Super 6 1966 NBC Produced by DePatie–Freleng Enterprises and Mirisch-Rich Television Productions
The Mothers-In-Law 1967–1969 NBC Produced by Desi Arnaz Productions.
Super President 1967 NBC Produced by DePatie–Freleng Enterprises and Mirisch-Rich Television Productions
Ultraman 1968–1986 Syndication Produced by Tsuburaya Productions.
The Pink Panther Show 1969–1979 NBC/ABC Produced by Mirisch Films and DePatie–Freleng Enterprises.

United Artists Media Group (UAMG)

Title Years Network Notes
Survivor 2000–present CBS
The Apprentice 2004–present NBC
Shark Tank 2009–present ABC co-production with Sony Pictures Television.
The Voice 2011–present NBC co-production with Warner Horizon Television.
On the Menu 2014 TNT
Lucha Underground 2014–present El Rey Network
Beyond the Tank 2015–2016 ABC co-production with Sony Pictures Television.

Television specials


  1. ^ "UA-TV Names Banker Expert". Billboard. December 16, 1957. p. 6. Retrieved January 6, 2016.
  2. ^ You Must Remember This: The Warner Bros. Story (2008), p. 255.
  3. ^ WB retained a pair of features from 1949 that they merely distributed, and all short subjects released on or after September 1, 1948; in addition to all cartoons released on or after August 1, 1948.
  4. ^ "Media History Digital Library : Free Texts : Free Download, Borrow and Streaming : Internet Archive".
  5. ^ Galbraith, Jane (1986-06-25). "UA, MGM to remain separate operations: Only TV units to be grouped". Variety. p. 5.
  6. ^ Busch, Mike Fleming Jr,Anita; Fleming, Mike Jr; Busch, Anita (Sep 22, 2014). "MGM Buys 55% Of Roma Downey And Mark Burnett's Empire; Relaunches United Artists".
  7. ^ Bond, Paul (September 22, 2014). "MGM Acquires Majority Stake in Mark Burnett's Companies". The Hollywood Reporter.
  8. ^ Barnes, Brooks (Sep 22, 2014). "MGM Buys Big Stake in Mark Burnett's Reality TV Production Company". The New York Times.