Updated: CMT Goes To Head Of Class In Acquiring 'Fifth Grader'


MTV Networks' CMT has secured the exclusive cable rights to Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?

Under the multiyear deal with Twentieth Television, terms of which were not disclosed, CMT will begin stripping Fifth Grader, from Mark Burnett Productions and hosted by comedian Jeff Foxworthy, weeknights in primetime, beginning Sept. 21.

All told, CMT has acquired the cable rights to 150 fresh, half-hour installments, which have also been picked up by a number of station groups with clearances covering most of the nation, and will air on MyNetwork TV on Tuesdays.

CMT's initial plan calls for Fifth Grader to run back-to-back episodes from Sept. 21 through Sept. 25, before settling into its regular schedule the following week -- a pair of stacked episodes in the 8 p.m. hour every weeknight, except for Tuesday, when it will air at 7 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. 

The show, in which contestants try their hands at answering elementary school questions, has run on the Fox network since 2007.

As part of the deal, CMT and Twentieth will work together to produce themed episodes of the series, notably a country music week.

"This Fifth Grader deal is particularly significant for CMT, as we have the exclusive cable rights, and we'll be airing brand new episodes of the syndicated series," said Mary Beth Cunin, CMT's senior vice president of programming strategy, in a statement. "We're thrilled to work with Mark Burnett & Twentieth to build another hit franchise for CMT."