We knew A&E was happy with their initial foray into sports entertainment-related programming. Both the Biography episodes focused on WWE Legends, and the AJ “Top Dolla” Francis-hosted Most Wanted Treasures memorabilia show were ratings successes.
They’re successes the Hearst & Disney-owned network is looking to build upon in a big way, as they’ve announced an expansion of their partnership with WWE that will give us more of those two shows (although I guess one needs a new host), a new show documenting wrestling rivalries, and more.
@WWEonAE is back with over 130 HOURS of all-new premium series and specials, including "@Biography: WWE Legends,” a brand-new series “WWE Rivals,” and the return of "WWE’s Most Wanted Treasures."— WWE (@WWE) March 1, 2022
Coming soon to @AETV! #WWEonAE pic.twitter.com/FMDDKgB3jZ
Here’s the presser:
A&E and WWE® Expand Original Programming Multi-Year Partnership With More Than 130 New Hours
New Seasons of the Acclaimed ‘Biography: WWE Legends’ Strand and the Hit Original Series ‘WWE’s Most Wanted Treasures’ To Begin Production
Network Greenlights New Series ‘WWE Rivals’ (Working Title) and More
NEW YORK—(BUSINESS WIRE)— A&E and WWE (NYSE: WWE) today announced a multi-year expansion of their successful programming partnership with the commissioning of more than 130 new hours of premium WWE-themed series and specials to air exclusively on A&E platforms and to be distributed worldwide by A+E Networks.
The multi-platform partnership includes 35 new episodes of the genre-defining, Emmy-award winning franchise “Biography,” featuring documentaries on legends of WWE. Last year’s “Biography: WWE Legends” episodes drove “Biography” to become A&E’s most-watched series in 2021. WWE is also beginning production on 24 new episodes of the original series “WWE’s Most Wanted Treasures,” which will air over multiple seasons. The first season of “WWE’s Most Wanted Treasures” was A&E’s most-watched new series of last year.
A&E has also ordered 40 hours of the new series, “WWE Rivals” (working title). “WWE Rivals” (w.t.) will chronicle the little-known stories behind the biggest clashes in WWE history. The episodes will include revelatory insights from those who were a part of the rivalries that often extended far beyond the ring and the cameras.
Additional hours of original programming are currently in development as well.
“The collaboration between these two powerhouse brands has already proven to resonate with audiences and we look forward to working together to create premium content with broad appeal,” said Elaine Frontain Bryant, Executive Vice President and Head of Programming for A&E. “WWE’s incredible fanbase and talent roster are a great complement to A&E’s unique brand of in-depth storytelling that take fans behind the curtain and we are thankful to the entire WWE team for their partnership.”
“A&E is an amazing partner with an impressive lineup of signature series across its networks,” said Nick Khan, WWE President. “The expansion of our partnership will allow us to continue creating a massive slate of new content with a trusted partner, while further establishing A&E as a destination for WWE fans for years to come.”
Through in-depth films helmed by some of the industry’s top directors and storytellers, “Biography” continues its focus on meaningful events and personalities as well as their impact on our culture. Through new and archival interviews and never-before-seen footage, each film will give fans an in-depth look at the early lives, rise to fame and careers of some of the most influential stars in WWE history.
“WWE’s Most Wanted Treasures” takes viewers on a journey to find some of WWE’s most iconic, lost memorabilia. In each episode, WWE Superstars and Legends investigate, negotiate, bid and travel across the country to unearth rare items in the hopes of preserving and sharing the legacy behind the memorable moments in WWE history.