Sunday, June 9, 2013

Stephen King's 'Under the Dome' on CBS could create new TV model

CBS' highly anticipated thriller, "Under the Dome," could help create a new business model for TV shows -- and encourage broadcasters to gamble on risky big-event summer programming.

The 13-episode series, which debuts June 24 on CBS, is based on a bestselling Stephen King novel by the same name and produced by Steven Spielberg's Amblin Entertainment and CBS Studios.

"Under the Dome" takes place in a small American town that is suddenly and inexplicably sealed off from the rest of the world by a gigantic transparent dome. Trapped inside the bubble, residents must grapple with post-apocalyptic conditions.
PHOTOS: Billion-dollar movie club

Broadcast networks long ago abandoned ambitious original scripted shows to launch in the summer. Instead, they have held back their promising projects for the fall to kick off the traditional TV season when more viewers are plopped on their couches.

However, by stocking summer schedules with cheaper reality shows and reruns of scripted shows, ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox have witnessed an exodus of viewers, ceding fertile ground to cable channels AMC, FX, Showtime and others. Cable networks took advantage of the broadcast networks' summer doldrums and captured viewers with their own groundbreaking and award-winning programs.

That's why CBS wanted to take a big swing.

"We were looking for the ability to put on more original programming because things were getting a little quiet during the summer, and we had to look for new models to do that," CBS Corp. Chief Executive Leslie Moonves told Wall Street analysts last month.

To pay off on its gamble, the nation's No. 1 network decided early on that it needed to tap two increasingly important revenue sources -- Internet streaming services and international syndication sales -- to finance "Under the Dome" and make it profitable from the start.

The program, which was shot in North Carolina, cost about $3 million to $3.4 million an episode to produce, on the high side for a new network drama. Advertising rates for summer shows were not high enough to support such an elaborate project.

Read more at,0,5527066.story

No comments:

Post a Comment