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You're a Wanted Man, Charlie Brown

ABC to air classic ”Peanuts” specials this holiday season

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If ABC schedulers tried to air reruns of a classic ’60s drama, they’d get their derrieres handed to them. But the rules are different when it comes to three Peanuts specials that were made more than 40 years ago: It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown; A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving; and A Charlie Brown Christmas. Though all the titles are available on DVD and online, they’re an important part of ABC’s prime-time schedule. Not only do they perform well among adults 18-49 (Great Pumpkin and A Charlie Brown Christmas averaged between a 2.7 and 2.9 rating last year, which is as good as — if not better than — most of ABC’s sitcoms), they are immensely popular among advertisers, who are hungry for holiday-related programming this time of year. ABC, which grabbed the specials from CBS in 2001 and currently has the rights to them through 2015, may also benefit from future cross-promotional opportunities: Bridesmaids director Paul Feig recently announced he’ll produce a Peanuts feature for Twentieth Century Fox Animation that’s set for release on Nov. 6, 2015, just in time to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the Peanuts strip and the 50th birthday of A Charlie Brown Christmas.