Fox News Tops Cable’s Total-Viewer Rankings With Week Of Ukraine, Malaysia Airlines Mystery And Obamacare Deadline

By | Tuesday March 18, 2014 @ 10:47am PDT

Ukraine, Malaysia Airlines Flight 370,fox-news-logo and the Obamacare deadline catapulted Fox News Channel to No 1 among cable networks in primetime last week, with an average of 2.049 million viewers. FNC edged past USA  (1.907 million), History (1.898 million), AMC (1.796 million), TBS (1.73 million), TNT (1.613), and ESPN (1.334 million). CNN finished the week 22nd among cable networks with 800,000 primetime viewers of all ages, and MSNBC ranked No. 27 with 666,000 primetime viewers. In total day, FNC ranked No. 3 with viewers 2+, CNN ranked No. 37 and MSNBC ranked No. 28.
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‘American Idol’ Partners With Google & Facebook For Online Voting, Takes On ‘Rising Star’ With Real-Live Voting Updates

By | Monday January 27, 2014 @ 10:52am PST
Nellie Andreeva

American IdolWhen Fox confirmed recently that AT&T, which had been one of the main sponsors of the singing competition since Season 2, will not return for the current 13th season, the move appeared to be a sign of the times. Phoning and texting, the primary way of audience voting a decade ago, have been pushed out by online voting, which American Idol has been doing for the past couple of seasons. Now the show has brought in Internet juggernauts Google and Facebook to handle voting this season and is introducing real-time results — months before the premiere of Rising Star on ABC, whose format is built around that. As part of the new partnerships, voting on Idol will begin at the beginning of the live shows as opposed to after the broadcast as was the practice for the first 12 seasons.

Google will provide an online voting platform that allows viewers to cast votes directly from Google Search. Meanwhile, Facebook will give on-air voting progress updates based on real-time East Coast voting data during select live shows. That will include demographic voting trends and relative contestant rankings. While not exactly mirroring Rising Star‘s model of contestants being able to see their voting tally as they perform, Idol is jumping in front of the trend of reporting voting as it happens in real time. One of Rising Star‘s biggest challenges has been incorporating Mountain and Pacific time zones in … Read More »

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Box Office Final Numbers: Weather Knocks Film Grosses Down Across The Board

OPENING: Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones (Paramount, wide) $18.3 est. 3-day opening for recast franchise NOTEWORTHY: Frozen (DIS) crosses $600M worldwide

BoxOffice_logo__131122164403-275x206__131207011855UPDATED MONDAY, 1:30 PM: Final numbers for all weekend estimates are less than expected as arctic temps across the nation kept moviegoers home Sunday night. As it played out, The Wolf of Wall Street ended up at $13.2M and American Hustle at $12.4M for the three-day weekend and, of the top ten, Wolf had the best weekend to weekend hold, down 29%. Other pics have been in the marketplace longer, of course, but it is still worth noting. Opening wide this Friday will be The Legend of Hercules from Lionsgate from director Renny Harlin, Universal’s Afghan battle pic Lone Survivor and expanding to 1,700 screens is Warner Bros.’ Her from Spike Jonze. Here are the final numbers and rankings from this weekend. Bottom ten on second page:

1). Frozen (DIS), $19,575,525 3-day (-32% from previous weekend) / 3,318 locations (-17) / $5,900 average / Cume: $296,691,729 / Wk 7

2). Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones (PAR), $18,343,611 / 2,867 locations / $6,398 average / Cume: $18,343,611, / Wk 1

3). The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug (WB), $15,675,220 (-46%)/ 3,730 locations (-168) $4,202 average / Cume: $229,059,642 / Wk 4

4). The Wolf Of Wall Street (PAR), $13,230,353 (-29%) / 2,557 locations (+20) / $5,174 average / Cume: $63,125,467 / Wk 2

5). American Hustle (SONY), $12,404,207 (-34%) / 2,518 locations (+11) / $4,926 average / Cume: $87,923,123 / Wk 4

6). Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (PAR) $10,633,959 (-45%)/ 3,407 locations (-100) / $3,121 average / Cume; $108,713,472 / Wk 3

7). Saving Mr. Banks (DIS), $8,694,891 (-35%) / 2,110 locations (0) / $4,121 average / Cume: $58,958,280 / Wk 4

8). The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (FOX), $8,001,717  (-37%)/ 2,922 locations (+13) / $2,738 average / Cume: $45,470,954 / Wk  2

9). The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (LG), $7,051,309 (-30%) / 2,143 locations (-172) / $3,290 average / Cume: $407,139,699 / Wk 7

10). Grudge Match (WB), $5,325,423 (-34%) / 2,856 locations (+18) / $1,865 average / Cume: $24,835,480, / Wk 2

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Warner Bros Tops UK Distributor List For Third Time In Four Years

Warner-bros-logoWarner Bros UK was Britain’s top distributor in 2013, the third time in four years it has held the title, and the sixth time since rankings began in 1991. The studio says it grossed £194M ($320.3M) last year for a 16.5% share. The figures are not records as the last time Warner UK was No. 1 in 2011, it grosed £205.8M for an 18.04% share (that was the year Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 2 ruled the box office); and in 2010, WB UK grossed £204.1M for an 18.4% share with the first part of the Harry Potter finale and Christopher Nolan’s Inception among top films. In its post-Potter period, Warner Bros remains entrenched in the UK and in 2013 inaugurated the Warner Bros Studios Leavesden and the Making Of Harry Potter studio tour. (It also opened its first-ever West End musical, Sam Mendes’ Charlie And The Chocolate Factory.) The first two films made at Leavesden, Doug Liman’s Tom Cruise vehicle, Edge Of Tomorrow, and the Wachowski siblings’ Jupiter Ascending, both arrive in theaters in 2014. This year, The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug (£32.9M), Man Of Steel (£29.9M), Gravity (£27.3M), The Hangover Part III (£19.3M), The Great Gatsby (£15.7M) and The Conjuring (£10.4M) were among the highest local grossers for the studio. Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine was also handled locally by WB and became the director’s top UK movie ever with … Read More »

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‘Modern Family’ Ratings Mystery: Where Is The Syndication Bump On ABC?

By | Tuesday December 24, 2013 @ 9:57am PST
Nellie Andreeva

Modern FamilyLast week, the latest numbers for Modern Family‘s freshman run in syndication came out. The Emmy winning ABC comedy, which airs on USA and in broadcast syndication, hit new combined highs in all key measures, including households (5.1), Adults 18-34 (3.1) and Adults 18-49 (3.1). Modern Family now ranks as the No.2 program in all of syndication among 18-49 behind The Big Bang Theory (3.4) and is No.1 in 18-34. At the same time, the season to date rankings for all broadcast programs came out, and Modern Family is averaging 5.0 in 18-49 in 18-49 through the first 12 weeks of the season (in most current ratings that include DVR playback). That is not bad, as Modern Family is tied with NBC’s The Blacklist for No.3 in 18-49 behind Sunday Night Football (7.9) and Big Bang (6.8). But vs. the same 12 weeks last season, Modern Family is down 21%. That despite the show’s solid start in syndication. Read More »

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Foreign Language Oscar Preview: A Long List Of Strong Contenders For Such A Shortlist Of Possible Nominees

oscarLast year, I offered up a preview of the 15 films that had the most buzz going into the unveiling of the Foreign Language Oscar shortlist. Somehow this year, with a record 76 entries (last year it was 71), I whittled down another 15 films that have a shot at the shortlist which is expected to be finalized later this week. This was not an easy task in one of the strongest fields for foreign film in recent years. While 2012′s eventual winner Amour seemed like a foregone conclusion, this year has any number of possible outcomes. Movies that started their careers in Berlin and Cannes are represented below, but so are others that didn’t make it to those high-profile events. I spoke with the directors of each film about their inspirations and expectations, and in some cases with the U.S. distributor about what gave them the confidence to acquire. Notably, Harvey Weinstein clarifies the controversy surrounding an edit of Wong Kar Wai’s Hong Kong entry The Grandmaster. There’s also a lot more here from folks like Paolo Sorrentino, Thomas Vinterberg and Sebastian Lelio, among many others. The rules for selecting the final winner have changed this year with the entire Academy voting body able to weigh in without proving they have seen the films in a movie theater. But the regs for establishing the shortlist remain the same: The Phase I committee determines six of the nine films on the shortlist. The other three titles will be determined by the select Foreign Language Film Award Executive Committee. Those three extra titles might have international renown but been somehow overlooked by the larger committee (wink, wink City Of God, 4 Months, 3 Weeks And 2 Days and others). After that, an uber-committee of 30 higher profile members chooses the ultimate five nominees after viewing the finalists over the course of a long weekend. Below (in alphabetical order by title) are profiles of the 15 films that I believe have a shot at the first stage: Read More »

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Golden Globes TV: ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’, ‘House Of Cards’ & ‘Masters Of Sex’ Lead Pack Of Newcomers As Old Favorites Fall

By | Thursday December 12, 2013 @ 8:34am PST
Nellie Andreeva

The Hollywood Foreign Press are a fickle crowd — one day you may be in and winning by a landslide, the next day you are out. Showtime’s Homeland learned Brooklyn-nine-ninethat this morning. The Golden Globes was the first major awards show to recognize the Showtime drama two years ago when it was tied for most nominations, 3, winning for best drama series and best actress, Claire Danes. The thriller drama did one better last year, leading the TV pack with most noms, 4, and sweeping the top drama categories: best drama, best actress and best actor, Damian Lewis. But there is no trace of Homeland on the list of nominations this year as the dominant winner of the past two Golden Globes has been shut out. Golden Globes 2014 Nominees TVThe same goes for another big drama performer at the Golden Globes, HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, which won the best drama series trophy before Homeland in 2011. The HBO drama had scored at least two nominations every year, also winning for star Steve Buscemi in 2011, but was left out completely today.

Related: Golden Globes TV Nominees Remarkably Snub-Free – Sorry, ‘Homeland’

The Golden Globes again took upon its role of the biggest cheerleader of new broadcast series. No, they didn’t hand a best drama series nomination to a freshman — extending first-year broadcast dramas’ drought in the category to seven years. But they still recognized broadcast’s freshman class, which had been completely ignored by the WGA and the SAG Awards. That includes best comedy series and comedy actor nominations for Fox’s Brooklyn Nine-Nine and star Andy Samberg; best comedy actor nom for Michael J. Fox, star of his struggling eponymous sitcom on NBC;  and best drama actor for James Spader for hit new NBC drama The Blacklist. But the broadcast networks again fell short of unseating cable from the top of the network rankings. Premium cable and digital were dominant this year. Fueled by longform, HBO was once again No. 1 with 9 noms, followed by the two other pay cable networks, Showtime and Starz, and digital upstart Netflix with six each. But it was a broadcast net, CBS, that landed the only multiple best series nominations — for comedy The Big Bang Theory and drama The Good Wife.

Related:
Golden Globes Nominees: Scorecard
Golden Globe Awards Nominations

house_of_cardsAlmost all buzzy cable/digital 2013 newcomers (sans FX’s The Americans)  got a notice by the HFPA, with Netflix’s House Of Cards leading the way with four nominations including best drama series; Showtime’s Masters Of Sex landing nominations for best drama and best actor, Michael Sheen (but no Lizzy Caplan?!); and fellow Showtime newcomer Ray Donovan nominated for star Liev Schreiber and co-star Jon Voight. Two breakout performances by young actresses are getting first major award recognition, Tatiana Maslany of BBC America’s Orphan Black and Taylor Schilling of Netflix’s Orange Is The New Black. They are part of an overhauled best drama actress field which includes only one returning nominee, 2010 winner Julianna Margulies.  The other first-timers are Kerry Washington for ABC’s Scandal and House Of Cards‘ Robin Wright. Things are mirrored on the male side with only one holdover, Bryan Cranston of AMC’s Breaking Bad, joined by Schreiber, Sheen, Spader and House Of Cards‘ Kevin Spacey. The Newsroom‘s Jeff Daniels, who landed a Golden Globe nomination last year and followed up with a surprise Emmy win, has been left out, along with Mad Men‘s Jon Hamm, who scored the AMC drama’s only nomination last year. The series’ tally went to zero this year. Also left out completely for a second straight year: HBO’s Game Of Thrones. Read More »

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FNC’s New Primetime Snags Year’s Best Stats, Third Consecutive Week At No. 2 Among All Cable Nets

By | Tuesday November 12, 2013 @ 11:08am PST

Fox News Channel‘s revamped primetime, unveiled on October 7, clicked last week, scoring its highest ratings of 2013 in both total viewers and the news demo, excluding the week of the Boston Marathon bombing back in April. FNC’s primetime logged 2.1 million in total viewers, which put it behind only ESPN among cable networks. In the news demo, FNC logged 376,000 primetime viewers, according to Nielsen. The week was FNC’s third consecutive ranking No. 2 in prime among all cable networks. In total day, FNC ranked No. 4 last week — trailing Nick, ESPN and Adult Swim.

Related: Megyn Kelly Tops Cable News On Election Night

Meanwhile, MSNBC averaged 716,000 primetime viewers and CNN averaged 433,000, which put them at No. 27 and No. 38 in the cable network rankings for the week, respectively. Among 25- to 54-year-olds, MSNC snagged 202,000 (No. 26) and CNN averaged 146,000 (No. 37).

Related: MSNBC’s ‘Alec Baldwin’ Hits New Low, CNN’s ‘Unguarded’ Down
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UPDATE: Domestic Box Office Top 10: ‘Thor 2′ Eyeing $86M To $87.7M Weekend

By | Sunday November 10, 2013 @ 8:47am PST
Mike Fleming

2ND UPDATE: Thor: The Dark World has performed more strongly than expected and it will finish anywhere from $85.8 million this weekend to $87.7 million, even though I have one pundit who feels it could exceed that. Though many of our commenters have taken after Thor (and me, but the latter is inevitable given who I am temporarily replacing) in the comment thread following this box office report, Thor 2 is doing what a sequel is supposed to do. It is the ninth biggest November debut ever, coming just behind last year’s 007 pic Skyfall‘s $88.36 million, and it is the fourth biggest opening weekend of the year behind Iron Man 3‘s $174 million, Man Of Steel‘s $116.6 million and Fast 6‘s $97.4 million. It is scoring with younger audiences. Internationally, it is doing twice as well overseas as here, and that means the film could land upwards of $600 million.

The key will be how it plays before the opening of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, which could have a $150 million opening weekend and consume all the oxygen in the room. Marvel seems to be able to do no wrong. The studio is in a zone I’ve seen in the past only with animated films, back when Jeffrey Katzenberg‘s Disney was cranking out one classic 2D animated classic after the other (my kids were small then, I saw The Little Mermaid, The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast probably 500 times each and knew the words to every tune), and John Lasseter‘s Pixar. Marvel could probably score a big hit right now with a movie devoted to Tom Hiddleston‘s Loki character. The studio will undoubtedly come back to earth at some point, as the label tries to launch new franchises like Guardians Of The Galaxy and Ant-Man, and those will be Kevin Feige‘s real test.

There’s a real horse race going on for second place, and all three of the horses have held strongly. It’s a virtual dead heat for Bad Grandpa, Free Birds and Last Vegas. The drop-offs from last week’s numbers are low considering the arrival of Thor 2. Bad Grandpa only fell 43%, Free Birds is off 30% and Last Vegas only 32% as a younger audience is giving it a shot. Since there’s a statistical margin of error in early weekend numbers, the second place winner won’t be known until the photo finish comes in tomorrow morning, when all of the final grosses are submitted and Rentrak sends out box office actual weekend grosses.

Another title worth watching is Fox‘s slow build on The Book Thief, the Brian Percival-directed adaption of the Markus Zusak WWII novel for Fox 2000. It opened in four locations and put up a per screen average of $27,000, for $108,000 total.

Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa had another strong weekend and looks likely to squeak out second place. I saw this movie on the anniversary of a personal tragedy, picked up my distraught son from college and took him hoping to pull him out of the rut. I suppose it is easy to critically dismiss movies rife with physical comedy, but the two of us laughed like idiots, and director Jeff Tremaine and Johnny Knoxville will always occupy a place in my heart for helping my son get through what would have otherwise been an unbearable evening. As Tremaine told me, “Sometimes, you just need to laugh.” That movie, which cost a reported $15 million, ends the weekend around $78.5 million as Tremaine continues his evolution as a filmmaker with a movie on the decadent rock band Motley Crue.

Coming in third will be Free Birds, the Relativity released animated film that could get to $30 million after its second frame. Is that a good outcome for a film with a reported $55 million budget? I saw the Relativity team at last night’s AFI premiere of the Scott Cooper-directed Out Of The Furnace (more on that in a later post), and they seemed relieved that the film was performing more strongly than was expected going into the weekend. Over half that budget was covered by foreign pre-sales in what was the first film from Relativity and Reel FX as they find their footing in animation.

As for the rest of the Top 10, the under-$30 million Last Vegas will finish fourth and get to $33 million; Ender’s Game should finish with a $44 million gross. For a franchise starter with a $110 million price tag, that just won’t get it done. Gravity continues to defy its title, ending the weekend with a domestic gross around $231 million. I’d covered all of the project’s twists and turns when Angelina Jolie dropped out and Universal punted; when Warner Bros. struggled to find a package that worked. They came at Jolie again and when she passed a second time, the studio focused in on Natalie Portman and Sandra Bullock, after looking at a field of actresses that included Naomi Watts, Marion Cotillard, Carey Mulligan, Scarlett Johansson and some others. Then Robert Downey Jr. dropped out, and George Clooney stepped up. When I saw the movie, beyond feeling overwhelmed by an auteur-de-force Cuaron outing, I kept asking myself, how the hell did this movie get made? None of WB’s financing partners would touch it (RatPac was gifted the film). It made no sense on paper, as great films often don’t. It comes down to betting $100 million on a world class filmmaker. Globally it has crossed $430 million. Most refreshingly, like its 3D counterpart Life Of Pi, Gravity has no sequel in it. It’s just a great one-off, with no future installments to water down its memory.

One of the other two noteworthy films in the Top 10 is 12 Years A Slave. I must admit, I cannot stand violence against women and children (still haven’t seen Prisoners) and maybe that’s why I have missed seeing this movie at its Toronto, NYFF and Hamptons showings. My box office sources tell me that the film’s escalation from 734 to 1144 screens, which prompted a 37% spike in business, is good – not great. But the film has a chance to play well for a long time, as awards season heats up. I will see it before then.

Richard Curtis’s About Time will finish ninth in the rankings, getting to a $6.2 million gross. Does that make it a flop? I don’t think so. I’m told by insiders that the film cost under $15 million to make, and is has already grossed $43 million overseas. You empower a writer/director like Curtis and hope you get another Love Actually. Even if you don’t, when he covers the bet like he will here, it’s good news that he can keep taking his swings.

Finally, a word about the future of Deadline’s box office reporting. This is my second weekend at it; last week I put up numbers because nobody else did. And so I did it, in between moderating panels at our Contenders Event. I have my eye on someone who’ll soon be taking this over and who will elevate it and make it their own. But I do have some observations about this beat. There is a learning curve here, just as I am learning things every day in my new adventure here in Hollywood after covering this business from Long Island for so long. For instance, I learned from last night’s Out Of The Furnace premiere that when they post a 6PM start time, what they really mean is they won’t be dropping the puck for at least an hour after that. Box office has similar challenges for a newcomer.

People who have been critical of Deadline’s box office coverage in the past have said films got thumped based on the biased observations of studios jockeying for position. I don’t know about that, but I have seen all the spinning that goes on this weekend, and it’s an easy trap to fall into if you don’t actually go see the films and be better able to judge quality. I can see the spin at work, how one studio will over-project a rival’s weekend expectations, so that when the actual numbers roll in, the movie can be spun as disappointing. Or how reporting factors in tracking service projections. Tracking is a tool that allows studios to see whether their marketing is creating awareness, and campaigns are fine-tuned in the final weeks based on those results. That tracking is not a reliable measure of performance. When some journalists see that actual film performance falls below tracking projections, they thump the movies and not the flawed tracking.

I can tell you that while I am doing this for the next couple of weeks, I will try my best to see as many of the new movies as I can, something that wasn’t a priority here. I have a healthy respect for the creative process, for how hard it is to make a movie, and all the places it can go wrong. Last night at Out Of The Furnace, I met with the director, Scott Cooper. Here was a guy who put his own imprint on a spec script by Brad Inglesby (who was selling insurance when he got paid $500,000 against $1.5 million when Ridley Scott was directing and Leo DiCaprio starring), and Cooper made it very reminiscent of one of my fave films The Deer Hunter, with timely themes of economic hardship and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in soldiers returning from the Middle East. When I told Cooper how much I liked his movie, I could see him looking hard at me, as though trying to be sure I wasn’t shining him on (I wasn’t). Maybe it won’t be this way for every film he makes, but I could tell this one has themes that are very personal to Cooper and he really threw himself into this. Maybe this sense of empathy will make me the worst box office reporter of all time. I have seen already it isn’t pleasing some readers who come for bloodsport. I figure these would have been running around in togas in ancient Rome, using phrases like “epic fail” when they stopped throwing Christians to the lions. The only blood on display here will be my own, because I tend to bleed on the page sometimes. If that’s not good enough, so be it. Read More »

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AFM Briefs: Kate Bosworth, Thomas Jane To Star In ‘Somnia’; Image Acquires ‘Drive Hard’; Myriad To Sell ‘Frontera’ Overseas; ’10 Things I Hate About Life’ Revived; More

By | Thursday November 7, 2013 @ 1:21pm PST

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Sierra/Affinity has added two titles to its lineup for the AFM, both directed by Mike Flanagan, and both originally with the soon-to-shutter Focus Features International. The first is Flanagan’s Oculus, which premiered in Toronto and was acquired by Relativity for U.S. distribution. The other is Flanagan’s follow-up, Somnia, which will star Kate Bosworth and Thomas Jane. Flanagan wrote the script with his Oculus partner Jeff Howard (the pair recently sold their original pitch, Peekers, to Lionsgate). Production starts November 11th. Somnia is about an orphaned child whose dreams and nightmares manifest physically as he sleeps. Demarest Films and MICA Entertainment are financing, with Intrepid Pictures’ Trevor Macy and Demarest’s Sam Englebardt and William D. Johnson Producing. Mali Elfman and D. Scott Lumpkin are executive producers. Bosworth is repped by CAA, Radius Entertainment, and Sloane Offer Weber and Dern. Jane is repped by Paradigm and Ziffren Brittenham. Flanagan and Howard are with APA, Affirmative Entertainment, and Nelson Davis Wetzstein.

Image Entertainment has acquired U.S. rights to the actioner Drive Hard starring John Cusack (The Number Station, 2012) and Jane (The Punisher). The pic recently finished production in Australia and is set for a theatrical release next year. Brian Trenchard-Smith directed from a screenplay by Chad and Evan Law about a former race car driver-turned-driver’s training instructor (Jane) who is abducted by a mysterious thief (Cusack) and forced to be the wheelman for a crime that puts both in the sights of the cops and the mob and leads them all on a chase across Australia’s Gold Coast.

Myriad Pictures said it will handle worldwide sales outside the U.S. and Canada on the dramatic thriller Frontera starring Ed Harris, Eva Longoria, and Michael Peña. Michael Berry directed and co-wrote the script with Luis Moulinet III. CAA is repping U.S. and Canadian rights to the pic, which follows the events that take place after a former U.S. sheriff’s wife (Amy Madigan) is fatally injured while riding on her ranch property in the dangerous border area between the U.S. and Mexico. Read More »

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‘Blacklist’ Sets DVR Record, Retains 100% Of Premiere Demo Rating In Week 2; ‘New Girl’ Tops Percentage Gains With 89%

By | Sunday October 20, 2013 @ 3:31pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

After becoming the first broadcast show to grow by 5 million viewers or more from Live+Same Day to Live+3, NBC‘s hot freshman The Blacklist has set another DVR record, becoming the first broadcast series to add more than 6 million viewers from L+SD to Live+7. Both milestones were achieved by Blacklist’s second episode, which averaged 17.9 million viewers in Live+7, up 6.50 million or 57% vs. the 11.35 million who watched live or the night of the original airing.

Proving that DVR viewing is growing in leaps and bounds this season, the previous record for Live+7 viewership gain was posted only a week earlier, by CBS monster hit The Big Bang Theory, which added 5.7 million viewers for its season premiere between Live+SD and Live+7. What’s more, The Blacklist was able to erase its entire 13% Second Week drop among adults 18-49 in Live+SD through time shifted viewing. The second episode of the James Spader starrer rose to a 5.49 18-49 rating in week two, matching exactly its premiere 18-49 result. It appears to be the only new series to hold onto its premiere rating in Week 2 this season. The Blacklist also supplanted ABC‘s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. as the No.1 new series in 18-49 as S.H.I.E.L.D. dropped 23% in Week 2 L+7 vs. its debut to a 5.4. For Fox‘s Sleepy Hollow, which launched a week earlier, the Week 2 drop-off in L+7 was 9%. Big Bang remained the highest-rated broadcast program for a second straight week (7.6 in L+7), eclipsing NBC’s Sunday Night Football. Read More »

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RATINGS RAT RACE: ‘Biggest Loser’ Hits Debut Low, New ABC Comedies Down, ‘The Originals’ Up Strong

By | Wednesday October 16, 2013 @ 9:09am PDT

In one of the last premieres of the new season, The Biggest Loser (2.2/7) was back on NBC for Season 15 last night. The trio of trainers picked the 15 contestants for the cycle, including their first celeb, American Idol alumni Ruben Studdard. Looks like star power didn’t help. The Biggest Loser took a 27% loss from its two-hour Sunday Season 14 debut on January 6. That makes last night’s one-hour show the weight loss series’ lowest premiere ever. By the way, the debuts of Grimm, Dracula, Almost Human, Raising Hope and Enlisted are still to come this season. After Loser, NBC’s night saw mentor Cher showing Team Blake and everyone else in the vicinity exactly how being a superstar is done. Which is to say that The Voice (3.9/10) was back with a new show last night after last week’s recap. The one-hour Battles episode was up 30% over the October 8 recap (no surprise there), but it was down 13% from its two-hour October 1 original. Still, The Voice was easily the top rated show of the night while CBS’s NCIS was the most watched with 18.43 million viewers. Lit-up by the return of an original Voice lead-in Chicago Fire (2.4/7) rose 14% over last week. With a 2.8/8 rating, NBC won the night among adults 18-49 while CBS was tops in total viewers with 15.16 million watching. The rankings flipped in the second spot … Read More »

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Premiere Week Live+7 Ratings: Networks In Positive Territory, ‘Agents Of SHIELD’, ‘Big Bang’ & ‘Sleepy Hollow’ Post Biggest Gains

Nellie Andreeva

Here is some good news for the broadcast networks — viewers are not abandoning broadcast, they are just taking their sweet time watching the shows. The Live+7 ratings for premiere week came out today, and it painted a pretty good picture — all nets were up or flat vs. last fall. Compare that with the Live+Same Date ratings for the opening week of the season where only ABC and NBC were up in adults 18-49 and only NBC up in total viewers, while everyone else was down. The turnaround was biggest for Fox, which went from being down 15% year-to-year in 18-49 and down 13% in total viewers in Live+SD to +9% and +7%, respectively. It was fueled by freshman Sleepy Hollow (5.3 18-49 rating), which posted the biggest percentage Live+7 gain in adults 18-49 (70%) and tied CBS’ The Big Bang Theory for the second biggest absolute gain (2.2 rating). That was still good enough for Fox to rank fourth among the Big 4 networks (2.9, 7.5 million total viewers). NBC (3.8, up 6%; 11.5 million, up 17%) remained the leader in 18-49, paced by the premiere of The Blacklist (5.5, up 43%). CBS was still No.1 in total viewers (13 million, up 1%) and moved up from third to second in 18-49 (3.1, nc). Its top performer was the hourlong Big Bang Theory (7.8 in 18-49, up 40%), the highest rated program of premiere week in 18-49. CBS also claimed the most watched program, NCIS, 24.7 million, followed closely by Big Bang (24.2 million). ABC (3.0, up 7%; 7.9 million, -1%) was No.4 in 18-49 but claimed 3 of the Top 5 programs in absolute 18-49 gain: No.1, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (7.0, up 2.3), No.4, Modern Family (6.2, up 2.1), and No.5, Grey’s Anatomy (5.1, up 1.7). While the networks’ Live+7 gains are all good for bragging rights, the networks still don’t have a way of monetizing viewing outside of the Live+3 window. Here are network rankings and a full list of all programs’ Live+7 18-49 performance: Read More »

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Marc Juris Named WE tv President & GM

By | Thursday October 10, 2013 @ 10:19am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Marc Juris is returning to AMC Networks as the new president and general manager of WE tv. He succeeds Kim Martin, who stepped down last week, and will report to Ed Carroll, COO of AMC Networks. Most recently, Juris was EVP and COO of truTV for nine years until departing the Turner network this past summer. Prior to that, he held a number of positions at AMC Networks, then known as Rainbow Media, including president of music channel Fuse. Earlier, he was SVP Programming and later general manager of AMC, where he developed and spearheaded the channel’s rebranding and its transition to an ad-supported network. That makes two network transformations he has overseen, having also shepherded Court TV’s evolution into truTV. He is taking over WE tv also in a transitional period, as the network, known for its slate of unscripted series, led by flagship Braxton Family Values, is moving into the scripted space, having recently greenlighted its first scripted series, The Divide. “We’re glad to have Marc Juris back at the company,” said Carroll. “Marc possesses a unique blend of programming and marketing expertise and has a proven track record of growing both brands and ratings.” Read More »

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‘Blue Is The Warmest Color’ Is France’s Top Local Opener Of The Year

Looks like an unwavering release strategy for Blue Is The Warmest Color has paid off for French distributor Wild Bunch. The Cannes Palme d’Or-winning love story went out yesterday in France and landed atop the Paris box office in its first 2 PM showings, outperforming both Disney’s Planes and the Hugh Jackman/Jake Gyllenhaal-starrer Prisoners. Planes was No. 1 in the whole of the country for the day, early rankings show, followed by Blue and Prisoners. In Paris, however, the Blue curious were out in droves for the first showings, bringing the film 3,286 admissions on 26 screens versus 2,581 on 20 screens for Planes and 1,629 for Prisoners on 19 screens. The result gives Blue bragging rights as the top French debut of the year and puts it in the top 10 openers overall for 2013. (Full results for the day are still being tallied in France.) Wild Bunch notoriously stuck to its guns on maintaining an October 9th release date, even though that put the movie out of possible consideration as France’s entry for the Foreign Language Oscar race. Sundance Selects has set an October 25th limited release in the U.S. for the film, which will be rated NC-17 stateside.

Related: OSCARS: Cannes Winner Ineligible For Foreign Language Category

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Kim Martin Steps Down As WE TV President, Segues To Advisory Role At AMC Networks

By | Tuesday October 1, 2013 @ 9:26am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

EXCLUSIVE: Kim Martin is leaving her post as president and GM of WE tv after nine years. She won’t be departing the company completely — she is transitioning into an advisory role at AMC Networks, reporting to CEO Josh Sapan. A replacement is expected to be named shortly. The network is keeping mum on its plans though observers note that the move comes days after top cable executive Lauren Zalaznick left NBCUniversal. Still, sources close to her dismiss the idea of her taking over WE. “Kim is an extremely talented executive with an impressive track record at WE tv,” AMC Networks COO Ed Carroll said in an internal memo sent earlier this morning. “Under her leadership, the network’s distribution has grown, viewership is up and WE tv is a top 3 women’s network on Thursday and Friday nights… I want to thank Kim for her many contributions to the company. Her leadership, commitment to excellence and her unflagging enthusiasm have made her a key member of the executive team, and has cemented WE tv’s reputation as a great place to work.” In the just released cable network rankings, WE averaged 350,000 primetime total viewers in Q3, up a healthy 29% from last year. In Women 18-49, the network drew 125,000 viewers, up 15%. WE tv, which evolved from airing commercial-free movies to a network for unscripted series, led by flagship Braxton Family Values, is undergoing another brand … Read More »

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Deadline’s Best Film Stories Of The Week

If you didn’t read some of Deadline’s Top Film stories this week, here’s your chance today:

‘Breaking Bad’s Bryan Cranston Will Next Play Blacklisted Scribe Dalton Trumbo
By Mike Fleming Jr – EXCLUSIVE: When he completes his tour de force run in Breaking Bad, Bryan Cranston will play the title role in the Jay Roach-directed Trumbo, the fact-based feature of the man who broke the Hollywood blacklist.

‘Prisoners’ Breaks Out For #1 With $21.4M; ‘Battle Of The Year’ #5 For Bleak $4.1M
By Nikki Finke - SUNDAY 1 AM, 4TH UPDATE: With the 65th Emmys broadcasting this weekend, Hollywood is only talking television, television, television. Read More »

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MPAA Report Says Google Effort To Reduce Search-Aided Piracy Hasn’t Worked

By | Wednesday September 18, 2013 @ 11:34am EDT

Last year Google changed its search algorithm in a way that was supposed to demote the rankings of websites that had been identified as persistent copyright violators. But there’s “no evidence” that the change has affected search-driven traffic to the sites, the MPAA says today based on a study it commissioned to follow up on the matter. “The share of referral traffic from Google to infringing sites included in the Google Transparency Report remained flat in the three months following Google’s implementation of the change last August.” This is important, MPAA chief Chris Dodd says, because search engines “bear responsibility for introducing people to infringing content — even people who aren’t actively looking for it.” Research firm Compete Inc. studied how many Internet users accessed URLs of 12M film and TV content sites that had hosted infringing content from 2010-2012, but not P2P sites or applications. It found that Google accounted for 82% of the queries that led people to the sites. In addition, 58% of the searches leading to the sites “contained only general keywords — such as the titles of recent films or TV shows, or phrases related to watching films or TV online — and not specific keywords aimed at finding illegitimate content.” U.S. Reps. Howard Coble, Adam Schiff, Marsha Blackburn and Judy Chu joined Dodd in calling on search engine providers to Read More »

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Radio Host Art Bell Joins SiriusXM To Present Talk Show About The Paranormal

By | Tuesday July 30, 2013 @ 8:28am PDT

NEW YORK—July 30, 2013 – Sirius XM Radio (NASDAQ: SIRI) announced today it will be the exclusive home to legendary radio personality Art Bell, marking the return of the trailblazing late night host to radio with a new, expanded live, nightly call-in show on which he will explore the paranormal, unexplained and more with expert guests and listeners nationwide.

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