It’s believed that the new AEW TV deal with WarnerMedia does not extend the old deal, so the deal still expires in 2023, according to Dave Meltzer in the latest edition of The Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
AEW and WarnerMedia previously announced in January 2020 that they had extended their TV deal for Dynamite on TNT through 2023, and agreed on a new series that we now know is Rampage. It was reported at that time how that extension was for 4 years and $175 million, or just under $45 million per year. That deal reportedly included an option for TNT to re-sign AEW in 2024, at a significantly increased price.
According to Brett Weitz, General Manager of TBS, TNT and truTV, the Turner networks are not interested in bidding on WWE programming when their deals with NBCU and FOX are up. During a media call on Wednesday, Weitz indicated that the networks are content staying in business exclusively with AEW when he was asked about bidding on WWE.
“We are delivering to our wrestling audience,” Weitz said, via Deadline. “More wrestling is better for wrestling fans.”
As noted, WarnerMedia announced this week that a new AEW Rampage show will premiere on Friday, August 13 at 10pm ET. The one hour show will air in that weekly time slot on TNT, until both Rampage and AEW Dynamite move to TBS in January of 2022. Rampage will mostly be taped on Wednesdays, although they will be live on weeks where there is a pay-per-view. The current plan for future AEW TV tapings is to tape Dynamite, Rampage, Dark and Elevation on Wednesdays for most weeks, and then split the tapings up between Wednesdays and Fridays when Rampage is live.
In addition to the two AEW TV shows moving to TBS, TNT will air AEW programming in the form of 4 “supercard specials”. It was announced that these pay-per-view-like specials will air quarterly beginning in 2022, but the Observer notes that right now none of the dates & times for these events have been confirmed.
Stay tuned for more on the AEW TV deal. You can click here for news on how much money the deal is worth for AEW, and click here for news on why AEW shows are moving from TNT to TBS. You can also click here for comments from Tony Khan and WarnerMedia executives.