Starz CEO Chris Albrecht gave a virtual third-season pickup to Black Sails, his swashbuckling pirate adventure series/Treasure Island prequel from Michael Bay, when he addressed the press this afternoon at the TCA Summer TV Press Tour. “I looked at the final episode [of Season 2] the other day, and when I finished it … I thought to myself, ‘I need to find out what happens next.’” But he quickly added, “That’s certainly not an official announcement,” noting the press has taken jabs at his network for picking up shows early.
Participating recently in a panel with FX Networks CEO John Landgraf and Showtime chief David Nevins, Albrecht said he listened to the two men discuss how a series does not find its audience until its third season in this market. “I’m actually doing this wrong,” Albrecht said he concluded. “If we like the first season should we pick up the next two. … I’m actually beginning to think that, in this world of increased competition, I should worry less about what other people think and more about our belief in … people doing the show. Like I said, when I looked at the end of the second season, I wanted to know what happens next. So I’m optimistic.”
Asked about the state of his network, Albrecht said: “I’m at a little bit of a loss to understand why really good shows we put on haven’t created more buzz with you. … We’ve been thinking about, talking marketing-wise, spending more money on a series’ second season than less money — which is the way networks historically think. Maybe we need to lean into these things we believe in, in a big way.”