Bravo targets Oscar surfers

The Bravo cable network is providing a destination for viewers who channel-surf during the commercial breaks of the March 21 Oscar telecast.

In what Bravo’s senior VP/general manager Kathleen Dore calls “a bit of a stunt,” Bravo will schedule excerpts of the 1994 Independent Feature Project/West’s Spirit Awards (taped March 19 in L.A.) to coincide with the Oscarcast’s commercial breaks.

For example, when ABC goes to commercial after the best supporting actress accepts her Oscar — and viewers with quick trigger fingers start pressing the channel buttons on their remotes — Bravo will cue the tape of the supporting-actress Spirit Award winner.

After her thank-you speech, the winner will sit down with movie critic Roger Ebert, who is taping brief interviews with the Spirit winners especially for use in the Bravo Oscar interstitials.

Although this is the first year Bravo will be using the Spirit Awards to pick up channel zappers on Oscar night, the network has covered the awards for the past three years.

During the Oscar telecast March 21, Bravo will run a series of independently produced short subjects, including the TV premieres of Kenneth Branagh’s Oscar-nominated “Swan Song,” Steve Buscemi’s “What Happened to Pete” and Illeana Douglas’ “Perfect Woman.”

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