Columbus’ image ‘war’ victim

Pubcaster CBC has been inundated with phone calls following the broadcast of “The War Against the Indians,” a 2 1/2-hour docu from the Native American point-of-view that debunks the hero image of Christopher Columbus.

The public web received hundreds of requests for copies of the program, a phenomenon that was reflected in the ratings.

Overnight Nielsens show “War” received an average-minute audience of 1,044, 000 between 8 and 10:30 p.m. (EDT) on Oct. 4.

Docu pulled in better numbers than CBC drama series “Road to Avonlea,” which grabbed 737,000 viewers from 7-8 p.m. (EDT), and the Late News, which held 974, 000, from 10:30-11 p.m. (EDT).

However, it came in well behind programming on private national net CTV. “America’s Funniest Videos” drew 2,154,000 viewers in the 8 p.m. time slot, while “America’s Funniest People” did 2,116,000. The 9-11 p.m. CTV movie, “Exclusive,” starring Suzanne Somers, registered an average-minute audience of 2 ,109,000.

CBC was far from disappointed with the numbers, which were favorable for a documentary up against some of CTV’s top-rated programs. Documentary producer Harry Rasky is negotiating with PBS and Turner Broadcasting for U.S. broadcast rights for the $ C1 million ($ 850,000) production.

Following a showing at the Denver Film Festival Oct. 17, the program will receive limited theatrical play at the Laemmle Fine Arts Theatres in Los Angeles , before moving to a major showing at the Smithsonian Institution Nov. 22.

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