Fox Acquires AT&T’s WarnerMedia Celebrity News Specialist TMZ

Fox Acquires AT&T’s WarnerMedia Celebrity News Specialist TMZ

At WarnerMedia, TMZ was something of an outlier. Its reporting on movie and TV stars with whom other parts of the Warner empire had business relationships created tensions inside the company, current and former Warner Bros. executives have said. Mr. Levin, who launched TMZ in 2005 and serves as host of its TV shows, will remain in charge of operations. In a statement, Mr. Levin said being under the Fox roof will create new opportunities to grow TMZ. “We couldn’t be more charged,’’ he said. Mr. Levin’s agreement with Warner Bros. was expiring and he wasn’t expected to stay on if the asset had remained there, a person close to the situation said.

AT&T REPORTEDLY LOOKING TO SELL CNN AFTER ‘HIT’ FROM ‘HATING TRUMP’: GASPARINO Fox already has deep ties to TMZ, which owns a popular website and produces several TV shows. Fox local-television stations carry the TMZ shows “TMZ” and “TMZ Live.” TMZ has produced specials for Fox’s entertainment unit, including “Harry & Meghan: The Royals in Crisis” and “UFOs: The Pentagon Proof,” and a sports gossip show that is carried by the Fox Sports 1 cable network.

TMZ co-founder and managing editor Harvey Levin has also produced shows for the Fox News channel. Terms of the deal weren’t released but TMZ is being valued at less than $50 million, people familiar with the matter said. The Wall Street Journal reported last month that the companies were negotiating terms that would value TMZ at between $100 million and $125 million.

Fox Entertainment Chief Executive Charlie Collier added, “We see great potential building upon TMZ’s brand and track-record and adding new creative ventures with Harvey and the TMZ team.” Earlier this year, Fox acquired Outkick Media, a news platform that covers sports, politics, and culture founded by outspoken commentator Clay Travis. “TMZ has been an impactful program for our FOX television stations and broadcast partners for many years,” Lachlan Murdoch, Fox Corp.’s executive chairman and chief executive, said in a statement.

Fox, which primarily produces unscripted fare and sports, will likely have fewer conflicts with TMZ. FOX CORP BUYS OUTKICK MEDIA PLATFORM: AN ‘ANTIDOTE’ TO ‘WOKE’ SPORTS

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