Oprah Launching New Television Network
First Published: January 15, 2008 4:40 PM EST Credit: AP
LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- Oprah Winfrey is launching her own cable network, Access Hollywood has confirmed.
The talk show queen is teaming up with Discovery Networks to launch OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network. Both parties will share 50/50 ownership of the new venture. However, Access has learned Oprah will have editorial control over the channel and its Web site.
Oprah will serve as chairman of the network.
“Fifteen years ago, I wrote in my journal that one day I would create a television network, as I always felt my show was just the beginning of what the future could hold,” Oprah said in a press release announcing the network. “For me, the launch of ‘The Oprah Winfrey Network’ is the evolution of the work I’ve been doing on television all these years and a natural extension of my show.”
The mission of the network is to “create multiple platforms for women, men and their families with a purpose and a passion: to celebrate life, to inspire and entertain, empowering viewers around the world to live their best lives, and by doing so, lift the lives of those around them in ever-widening circles,” according to the release.
OWN is slated to debut in 2009, on what is currently the Discovery Health Channel.
However, the new project will not get in the way of Oprah’s current daily show.
She told reporters she will fulfill her commitment on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” at least through 2011.
“The truth of the matter is one day that show has to end,” Oprah said on Tuesday. “The show will come to an end in its current form at some point. That may be 2011 and it may be after 2011. I have to actually make the decision long before 2011.”
Winfrey also talked about where the idea for OWN actually came from.
“This is the fulfillment of yet another dream for me that I have had for quite a long time. I actually was going through cleaning out some drawers awhile back last year and I came across a piece in my journal written May 24, 1992, which is actually sixteen years now since I had this vision of creating my own network using the platform of ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show,’” she revealed.
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