Turner Broadcasting System

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Turner Broadcasting System ( TBS ), mostly known under the short name Turner , is an American media company that operates cable stations and is active in the film rights trade. TBS is one of seven independent companies within the WarnerMedia group and is based in Atlanta in the US state of Georgia .


Ted Turner bought the unprofitable UHF television station WJRJ in Atlanta in 1970 and changed the station's name to WTCG, based on the station's new parent company, the Turner Communications Group .

In December 1976, WTCG became the first broadcaster in the United States to broadcast its programming using the superstation concept. With the advent of C-band satellites, a television station was fed into the cable networks nationwide for the first time via C-band. This concept formed the basis of today's modern Basic Cable Television ( cable TV ) in the United States.

When the Turner Communications Group changed its name to Turner Broadcasting System in 1979 , the name of the "core station" was changed again, this time to WTBS. With this, TBS Superstation established itself as the name for the cable transmitter originating from WTBS. TBS made history in 1980 with the launch of the Cable News Network (CNN), the first broadcaster to broadcast news only around the clock.

Ted Turner bought Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) from Kirk Kerkorian via TBS in 1986 . Turner found, however, that the takeover was beyond his financial capabilities and the running costs for the film studio could hardly be covered, whereupon he sold MGM back to Kerkorian a few weeks later. However, this only affected the film studio, the naming rights and the film library of United Artists  - Turner kept the complete film library of MGM, which also included all Warner Bros. titles from before 1948 and the majority of the RKO Pictures titles.

The subsidiary Turner Entertainment International was founded on August 4, 1986 to manage the newly acquired film library. In addition to the administration and management of the titles, Turner Entertainment also takes care of the restoration of the same.

TBS Superstation remained the most important TBS cable broadcaster, but additional cable broadcasters were founded to evaluate the extensive film library, which later even received various international offshoots:

  • 1988 - Turner Network Television (TNT)
  • 1992 - Cartoon Network (CN)
  • 1994 - Turner Classic Movies (TCM)

The MGM film library already brought with it a number of animated short films (theatrical shorts) from MGM and Warner Bros., in addition, TBS acquired the animation studio Hanna-Barbera in 1991, including its film library, which mainly comprised animated productions made for television. The combination of the two acquisitions provided material for the cartoon network cable TV station .

Turner merged with New Line Cinema in 1993 and with Castle Rock Entertainment in 1994 , after which Castle Rock sales branches were established abroad in cooperation with local film distributors ( Rank-Castle Rock / Turner in Great Britain, Concorde-Castle Rock / Turner in Germany, Filmayer-Castle Rock / Turner in Spain).

Turner Broadcasting System was merged with Time Warner in 1996 and then restructured.

In 2000 two more cable channels were created: Turner South , a southern version of TBS / TNT, and Boomerang, a CN offshoot.

After 2001, parts of TBS's sports holdings were sold by Time Warner:

Wrestling Federation, sold to World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) in March 2001
Basketball team, hockey team and the common stadium operating company; 2003/2004 sold to local Atlanta investors

In German-speaking countries, Turner currently operates the news channel CNN International, the entertainment channels Cartoon Network, Boomerang as well as TNT Serie, TNT Serie HD, TNT Film HD and TNT Comedy HD.



Cable transmitter

Terrestrial transmitters

  • WTBS Atlanta UHF Channel 17


Former brands: film / television

Web links

Commons : Turner Broadcasting System  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files