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Turner Network Television

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Turner Network Television

This article is about the American TNT network and its international offshoots. For other uses, see TNT.

Turner Network Television
Launched October 3, 1988
Owned by Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner)
Picture format 480i (SDTV)
1080p (HDTV)
Slogan Drama.
Headquarters Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
Sister channel(s) TBS, CNN, TCM, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Boomerang, Cartoonito, Pogo, TruTV, CNN International, HLN, NBA TV, CNN IBN, CNN en Español, CNN Chile, CNN Arabic, CNNj, n-tv, I-Sat, HBO, WPCH-TV, The CW, Cinemax
Website DirecTV Channel 245 (SD/HD)
Channel 1245 (VOD)
Dish Network Channel 138 (SD/HD)
Channel 9420 (HDTV)
Dish Network Mexico channel 602 (970 HD)
C-Band Galaxy 14-Channel 17
SKY México Mexico and Central America/Brazil Channel 415/60
Digital+ Spain Channel 24
Sky Deutschland Germany Channel 130
Kabel Deutschland Germany Channel 320 and 928
On most cable systems Check local listings
Verizon FiOS Channel 51 (SD)
Channel 551 (HD)
AT&T U-Verse Channel 108 (SD)
Channel 1108 (HD)

Turner Network Television (TNT) is an American basic cable and satellite television network that is owned by the Turner Broadcasting System subsidiary of Time Warner. The channel's programming consists of television series and feature films, with a focus on dramatic programming, along with some professional sporting events such as NBA basketball games.

As of August 2013, approximately 98,139,000 American households (85.94% of households with television) receive TNT.[1]



Turner Network Television first launched on October 3, 1988, with a telecast of the 1939 classic movie Gone with the Wind, to which TNT founder Ted Turner had acquired the rights. The film was chosen as the channel's first program because, it was said that Gone with the Wind was Turner's favorite movie (it would also be the first program to air on sister channel Turner Classic Movies, when it debuted in April 1994). Incidentally, Gone With the Wind had its premiere held in Atlanta, Georgia – Turner's hometown and the headquarters of Turner Broadcasting System – and the city served as the setting for the film. TNT was, at least initially, a vehicle for older movies and television shows, but slowly began to add original programming and newer reruns. When TNT began broadcasting films from the pre-1986 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer library, it caused controversy when the network aired colorized versions of many black-and-white classics.


In 1990, TNT obtained partial television rights to the National Football League's Sunday Night Football package, which it retained until 1997. The NFL on TNT consisted of three or four preseason games annually and telecasts of regular season games during the first half of each season. As has always been the case for cable broadcasts, TNT distributed their feed to local television stations in each team's home market. Starting in 1995, TNT was also the home of WCW Monday Nitro, the flagship program of the now-defunct World Championship Wrestling, which once regularly was the highest rated weekly program on cable television. The program defeated Monday Night Raw, the flagship show of the then-World Wrestling Federation, for 84 straight weeks until 1998.

The network was also known for its late night programming, such as MonsterVision, which showcased B movies (including a Godzilla marathon at the end of every month), with occasional guest hosts Penn and Teller. MonsterVision eventually found a permanent host in cult personality and drive-in movie aficionado Joe Bob Briggs (who hosted a similar B movie showcase on The Movie Channel called Joe Bob Briggs' Drive-In Theater for ten years prior to becoming host of MonsterVision). Every Saturday night, from 1997 to 2000, Briggs would host a pair of horror films (such as Friday the 13th Part 2 and Wes Craven's New Nightmare) and provide a running commentary, trivia, off-color jokes and a drive-in total. Also included in his host segments were jokes at the expense of TNT's Standards & Practices department for heavy censorship of the featured movies. This running joke culminated in a Friday the 13th all-night marathon during Halloween of 1998, where it was implied that Ted Turner was out to kill him.

Up until 1998, TNT would also show cartoons from the Turner library (such as The Flintstones, Scooby-Doo, the DePatie-Freleng Pink Panther cartoons, Dexter's Laboratory and The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest) on a block called "TNT Toons". The Rudy and Gogo World Famous Cartoon Show was also a TNT original children's program featuring classic Warner Bros., MGM, and Popeye shorts, hosted by marionettes and a nanny goat. In 1998, TNT dropped all of its remaining cartoons (which at the time were running under the Disaster Area banner), with those shows moving to Cartoon Network and becoming the core of a new cable network devoted to classic cartoons that launched several months later called Boomerang.

During the 1990s, TNT scheduled a lineup of shows on weekday afternoons that included Due South, Kung Fu: The Legend Continues, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and Babylon 5. In 1998, TNT took over production of the fifth and final season of Babylon 5 from the defunct Prime Time Entertainment Network; the following year, TNT produced the Babylon 5 spinoff series Crusade, but it was canceled after 13 episodes, when TNT decided science fiction did not fit their brand identity. In 2001, TNT debuted its then most successful original series, Witchblade, which ran for two seasons, ending its run in 2002.

Shift towards drama

On June 12, 2001, TNT underwent an extensive rebrand, with a new logo (designed by Trollbäck + Company) and a new slogan, "We Know Drama", which emphasized the network's new programming focus on dramatic shows, including sports and off-network syndicated dramas such as Law & Order, NYPD Blue, ER and Judging Amy. As the decade went on, its format became a direct contrast to sister network TBS, which had focused on a wider variety of programming initially but moved toward and now focuses on comedic series and films, and by extension Cartoon Network, which showed exclusively animated programming at the time (it still has a predominately animated schedule). In addition, NASCAR coverage moved to TNT from TBS starting in the 2001 season, as Turner Broadcasting System management believed that it would fit more with TNT's new format than TBS.

On January 1, 2003, "TNT Plus" began broadcasting as a substitute for TNT, although it does not appear this was ever reflected in the network's on-air identity. The apparent sole purpose of its establishment was to force rate renegotiations to help pay for TNT's new NBA and NASCAR contracts, well before the network's rates were scheduled to come up for renewal with most cable and satellite providers. In theory, TNT Plus was to have been the sole carrier of Turner's NBA and NASCAR coverage from that point forward, while any providers still carrying the original TNT would have seen replacement programming instead.[2] Although it appears that Comcast did not immediately sign on for TNT Plus, there is no evidence of Turner actually pulling sports programming from the "original" TNT.[3]

On December 7, 2008, TNT unveiled an update to its logo, mainly in a silver (on-screen during programming and on the TNT website) or sometimes gold beveling. The "We Know Drama" tagline remained, but the network added more of a focus on its original series and planned to have three nights of original primetime programming starting in 2009.[4] In 2012, TNT rebranded itself with a new slogan: "Drama, Period.", and the logo was simply recolored to match the themes of its shows.

Current programming


  • Dallas (2012–present)
  • Falling Skies (2011–present)
  • Franklin & Bash (2011–present)
  • Major Crimes (2012–present)
  • Mob City (2013-present)
  • Perception (2012–present)
  • Rizzoli & Isles (2010–present)


  • 72 Hours (2013–present)
  • Boston's Finest (2013–present)
  • Cold Justice (2013-present)
  • The Hero (2013–present)

Acquired programming

Sports programming

TNT, through the Turner Sports division of parent company Turner Broadcasting System, holds the broadcast rights to the following sports telecasts:

  • Golf on TNT (1995–present)
  • NASCAR on TNT (July 22, 2001–2014)
  • NBA on TNT (October 30, 1988–present)
  • NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament (preliminary rounds; March 15, 2011–present)

Future programming

  • Legends (2014)[5]
  • Marshal Law: Texas (2013)[6]
  • Murder in the First (2014)[7]
  • Nashville Confidential (2014)[8]
  • On The Menu (2014)[9]
  • The Last Ship (2014)[10]
  • Wake Up Call (2014)

Developmental programming


  • Bend In The Road[11] - Nicholas Sparks' based character drama.
  • Anonymous[12]
  • Crushed[11] - A primetime soap opera.
  • Guilt By Association[11] - A series about a female LAPD detective.
  • Lew Archer[11] - Based on Ross McDonald's title character.
  • Peter Gunn[11]
  • Portal House[11] - A group of young scientists dealing with the circumstances of finding a portal.
  • The Last Cop [11] - LAPD cop comes out of a twenty year coma.
  • Untitled W. Blake Herron Project


  • Burn[11] - Docudrama about Detroit firefighters.
  • Cop Swap[11] - Each week two law enforcement officials swap lives.

Former programming


Unscripted series

  • The Great Escape (2012)
  • Wedding Day (2009)


Sports programming

Acquired programming


Children's programming


European, Australian, Latin American, Spanish and Asian versions of TNT were launched in the 1990s but were exclusively dedicated to movies, mainly from the MGM and Warner Bros. archives (the U.K. and Scandinavian versions of TNT both broadcast WCW Monday Nitro on Friday nights just four days after its U.S. broadcast, and the Latin American version aired a children's block called "Magic Box"). The European, Australian and Asian versions of the channel were paired with Cartoon Network, while the Latin American version of the channel was paired with CNN International. The EMEA, Asian and Australasian TNT channels eventually became Turner Classic Movies, while the Latin American version retained the TNT branding. The most known TNT channel in Europe was (and still is) the French version, and used similar graphics to what the flagship U.S. channel was using at the time.


In January 2009, a version of TNT launched in Germany as TNT Serie. The channel shows a wide variety of old and recent American drama and comedy programs such as 30 Rock, Friday Night Lights, Murder, She Wrote, Northern Exposure, Monk, Third Watch, Rescue Me, Six Feet Under, Seinfeld, ER, The King of Queens, Everybody Loves Raymond, Caroline in the City, Boardwalk Empire, Game of Thrones and Falling Skies. Shows on TNT Serie are broadcast with two audio channels, one with the original English soundtrack and one with a German-dubbed soundtrack. In June 2009, the German version of TCM was relaunched as TNT Film. As of fall 2010, TNT Serie and TNT Film are also available in high definition.


The TNT brand came back to the Spanish market in summer 2007, when it launched exclusively on pay television platform Digital+. As of 2012, TNT is available on several cable providers in Spain. TNT España its divided in two blocks: Movies and TV Series, airing TV shows such as: The Vampire Diaries, The Big Bang Theory, Two and a Half Men, and Falling Skies. TNT España was the first channel which produced a television series for a pay/cable channel in Spain.


A local version of TNT in Turkey launched on March 3, 2008 by Doğan Media Group as a film channel. Foreign television series and movies were aired and the original red-gray TNT logo was used. In 24 January 2011, it was re-launched as an entertainment channel with new TV shows.[13] In 2012, TNT will be renamed into tv2.


The Scandinavian TNT channel was originally launched by tabloid newspaper Aftonbladet as Aftonbladet TV7 on October 9, 2006. Aftonbladet sold the channel in late 2007. In August 2008, it was sold once again and is since owned by Turner's NonStop Television. On March 2, 2011, the channel was relaunched as TNT7, following Turner Broadcasting System's purchase of NonStop Television owner Millennium Media Group. On March 21, 2012, the channel was renamed TNT, dropping the "7" from the name.

Netherlands & Flanders

On April 10, 2012, TNT HD Benelux started in Belgium, exclusively on Telenet. The first month was offered to consumers for free, with a subscription required thereafter. The channel launched in the Netherlands on January 24, 2013.[14] TNT HD Benelux offers a mix of comedies, movies and current TV series such as Falling Skies, Shameless and Memphis Beat, as well as classic series including ER, The West Wing and Smallville.[14]


External links

  • TNT HD Benelux
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