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Bravo picks up ‘Peaks’

“Twin Peaks” is returning to TV. In reruns, that is.

Bravo has licensed from Worldvision the 32 hours of David Lynch’s widely regarded cult favorite TV series, it was announced yesterday at the Television Critics Assn.’s National Cable Forum.

“Twin Peaks” will be the kickoff entry for Bravo’s new programming category, “TV Too Good for TV,” which starts in June.

Bravo said other acquisitions for this category will depend on “unique artistic vision and critical acclaim rather than ratings or volume of episodes.”

Meanwhile, the willingness of the broadcast and cable webs to pool their resources in joint ventures is ever increasing, Showtime Networks Inc. chairman/CEO Tony Cox said Saturday.

“We talk a lot about sharing costs and sharing programming,” mostly with CBS, he added.

Cox mentioned “Double Jeopardy,” Showtime’s arrangement with CBS for original movies that both parties bankroll. Cox also suggested the cable outlet wouldn’t rule out putting the right network series on the air as well.

“If there was a network series that was struggling that had real quality, critical acclaim and it made sense to us to pick it up, I’m sure we would consider it,” said Cox.

He also admitted Showtime’s emphasis on action-adventure films has been “almost to the exclusion of other possibilities” and says it will be looking into other forms and ideas for 1993.

For the first time since 1989, subscriber levels are up for Showtime, reported Cox, who estimates final figures for 1992 for Showtime Networks (which includes the Movie Channel) will show a hike of at least 350,000 subscribers.

Finally, Showtime Event Television, the pay-per-view production/distribution company, will present the “Toughman World Championship,” live on March 27. SET is pricing the event at $ 12.95-$ 14.95.

CNN said it will broadcast on-location in Asia the week of March 29, during a far-reaching panel talk that included CNN prexy Tom Johnson; Peter Vesey, VP CNN Intl.; and three news personalities who’ll participate: Larry King, Lou Dobbs and Bernard Shaw.

The booming cable network also announced worldwide distribution of CNN Intl. now reaches 60 million TV households in 142 countries, equaling the number of households reached domestically.

Comedy Central announced three new series in development, including “Comedy Central News” (CCN), regularly scheduled news programming to debut this summer. CCN will be in a similarly funny vein to “inDecision ’92” and “inAuguration ’93 .” Or, as their presentation stated, “Gives us five or seven or 30 minutes, and we’ll give you the world.”

Comedy Central also unveiled “Politically Incorrect,” hosted by Bill Maher, billed as “‘The McLaughlin Report’ for humorists,” and a new urban stand-up comedy showcase with a working title of “All Jokes Aside,” skedded for a fall debut.

USA Network announced a co-venture with Playboy Entertainment Group, “Eden,” billed as a “wildly erotic” adult series presented as a “novella” comprised of 26 half-hour episodes to debut this summer. David Kenin, exec VP programming, said USA “has long been interested in trying out an adult nighttime drama.”

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