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Rysher Entertainment was the owner of television and film programming content, primarily distributed around the world by CBS Television Distribution and Paramount Pictures. The company has its roots in Bing Crosby Productions ("BCP"). Its namesake, actor-singer Bing Crosby, founded BCP in 1949, and was best known for producing the sitcom Hogan's Heroes and the medical drama Ben Casey – in succeeding years, BCP was acquired by Cox Broadcasting.
|Fate||Shut down by Cox Broadcasting. Assets now owned by Vine Alternative Investments. Film library is distributed by Paramount Pictures and TV series are distributed by CBS Television Distribution|
|Predecessor||Bing Crosby Productions|
|Successor||Vine Alternative Investments|
|Founded||1945(as Bing Crosby Productions)|
|Owner||Cox Enterprises (1993–1999)|
In 1993, Cox acquired Rysher Entertainment. Rysher, founded in April 1991 by Keith Samples, had been established as an independently owned company whose original sole product had been the distribution of NBC's series Saved By The Bell (at the time, NBC was unable to distribute its series in syndication due to fin-syn rules). In 1993, and later distribution of another NBC series California Dreams in 1994, Rysher merged with Al Masini's Television Program Enterprises to form Rysher TPE, its alternate name used from 1993 to 1994. Through Rysher TPE, they produced and distributed shows such as Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous (renamed Lifestyles with Robin Leach and Shari Belafonte for its final season) and Star Search. Later, they produced and distributed George & Alana, which ran for one season in 1995. The company would later branch out into theatrical films, and in the span of three years had produced over two dozen feature films.
In May 1995, Rysher entered into a five-film domestic distribution arrangement with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. The company then shut down its theatrical film unit in July 1997 due to under-performing box office sales. In 1998, Rysher made a pact with HBO to distribute some of their shows outside of the U.S., including Arli$$, Oz and Sex and the City. The company was shut down in 1999 after Viacom entered an agreement with Cox Enterprises that would allow Paramount Pictures and its television unit to handle distribution rights. Rysher's library, today is incorporated into the libraries of CBS Television Distribution (for TV programs) and Paramount Pictures (for films, with the exception of The Opposite of Sex), which includes television and feature film classics such as Hogan's Heroes (whose partial rights are held by CBS), Ben Casey, and Walking Tall, as well as more recent programs and films including Nash Bridges (which was continued by Paramount Network Television after Rysher closed), Highlander: The Series, Kingpin and Big Night. Distribution rights to the Rysher Entertainment library could still change again with the proposed 2019 merger of CBS and Viacom.
Rysher's assets were later acquired by 2929 Entertainment in 2001, then in 2006 they were bought by Qualia Capital, LLC. and were merged with Gaylord Films and Pandora Entertainment. The combined entity became known as Qualia Libraries Co. and the Rysher name now serves as a limited partnership. In 2011, Qualia Libraries Co. was acquired by affiliates of Vine Alternative Investments which were integrated into Lakeshore Entertainment in 2015. Vine acquired Lakeshore's library and international sales operations in 2019.
- "COX COMPLETES ACQUISITION OF RYSHER ENTERTAINMENT" (Press release). Cox Enterprises. PR Newswire. Retrieved September 15, 2016 – via The Free Library.
- "RYSHER CALLS 'Cut!'" (Press release). Andrew Hindes. Variety. Retrieved May 11, 2018 – via Variety.
- ""ET" ALL PAR TV'S NOW" (Press release). Cynthia Littleton. Variety. Retrieved May 11, 2018 – via Variety.
- "Claim 311 on 2016 CD - eCRB". app.crb.gov. Retrieved November 19, 2019.