Foxtel has questioned Stan’s hyperbole on its new Showtime deal and says it overpaid for a modest output.
“There’s been a lot of propaganda in the Fairfax press about the significance of the deal. To suggest it’s the most important deal in recent Australian television history is laughable, I think,” Foxtel Director of Television Brian Walsh told TV Tonight.
“Of course we looked at the proposal from Showtime.”
Foxtel will retain first-run rights to Ray Donovan, The Affair and Penny Dreadful while Presto also has SVOD rights before Stan.
Stan has exclusive rights to Billions featuring Damian Lewis and Paul Giamatti.
“In the US last year there were 409 (*scripted titles) made. Of those 409, 4 were on Showtime –so there are 405 others that are available to acquire. All Stan will get from the deal this year is Billions, which has bombed. It debuted to a modest 341,000 (*18-49 demo in broadcast) in the US and then fell 65% from its lead-in which was Shameless. It’s averaging 324,000 people in 18-49 (*broadcast). So it’s not the huge hit Stan was expecting and they won’t be getting any new product until 2017 with Twin Peaks.
“For us it is absolutely important to have HBO and some of the other signature dramas we’ve acquired and will continue to acquire. Whilst we won’t have the other Showtime dramas coming down the pipeline, there are plenty of other quality dramas out there.
“Stan needs content and if they were prepared to pay the sort of money Showtime demanded then good luck to them.”
- broadcast premiere was 904,000 and episode 2 was 950,000.