Harpo Productions, Sony Pictures TV agree to launch Dr. Oz

Mumbai: Dr. Mehmet C. Oz, MD, will debut in first-run syndication next year with a series co-produced by Harpo Productions and Sony Pictures Television (SPT) and distributed by SPT. This was jointly announced by Oprah Winfrey; Harpo Productions president Tim Bennett; and Sony Pictures Television president Steve Mosko.

Dr. Mehmet is better-known to millions as Dr. Oz, the renowned surgeon, educator, and best-selling author who appears regularly on The Oprah Winfrey Show. The series, Dr. Oz (working title), will be available to stations across the country to launch in Fall 2009. Under the multi-year agreement, SPT will handle all distribution efforts for the show in the United States and Canada, advertiser sales and marketing, and co-produce the series with Harpo Productions.

Dr. Oz has earned a reputation as "America’s Doctor" through regular appearances over the past three years as the health expert for The Oprah Winfrey Show and is the nation’s preeminent and trusted expert on health and wellness. He is professor and vice-chairman of surgery at Columbia University as well as medical director of the Integrated Medicine Center and director of the Heart Institute at New York Presbyterian/Columbia Medical Center.

As the co-author of the best-selling YOU series, Dr. Oz is also a publishing phenomenon. In addition to numerous appearances on network morning and evening news programs, Dr. Oz is the host of the The Dr. Oz Show on XM Satellite Radio’s Oprah & Friends channel, giving viewers crucial information on health issues and sparking in-depth conversations about the essentials to living longer, more vibrant lives. He was recently named one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World by TIME magazine.

Winfrey said, "This is a show I believe in. Judging by the response from our viewers, Dr. Oz has already demonstrated he is a valued and trusted medical expert who has created a deep connection with our audience."

"We are looking forward to partnering with Sony Pictures Television on this project," said Bennett. "Of all the first-rate potential partners we spoke with, we felt that Sony was the best-positioned to co-produce and distribute the Dr. Oz show."

"We are thrilled to be working with Oprah, Dr. Oz and everyone at Harpo on this amazing project," said Mosko. "It’s a perfect marriage of independent, entrepreneurial companies and a wonderful opportunity for us to work with such tremendously talented people."

"Medicine has always been my calling. This show allows me to share the same passion I bring to my patients with millions of viewers every day. We will empower the audience to live more fully as they take control of their health … and their bodies. I am deeply appreciative to Oprah and to our great partner Sony for this opportunity," said Dr. Oz.

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