NEW YORK — The party is all in the family now, as Disney-owned ABC has claimed the exclusive first broadcast window to “The Sixth Sense,” which racked up a surprising $25.8 million over the weekend for Hollywood Pictures, also owned by the Walt Disney Co.
ABC could certainly use “Sixth Sense,” as the network has not aggressively pursued most of the summer blockbusters.
The web will pony up fees amounting to approximately 15% of whatever “Sense” ultimately grosses domestically. That percentage is the general standard for first-window rights. ABC’s rights to the Bruce Willis supernatural thriller will include two runs of the film over three to four years.
Drawing from the summer’s earlier hit releases, the Fox Network has “Star Wars: Episode 1 — The Phantom Menace” and “Entrapment” and is sharing windows with TBS and its sister cable network TNT on “Matrix” and “Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me.”
In addition to “Matrix” and “Austin Powers 2,” TBS and TNT have secured the first broadcast window to such titles as “Deep Blue Sea,” “The Mummy” and “Wild Wild West.” CBS will take a few “Wild Wild West” runs in the shared window with TBS.
As part of a multipicture deal with Paramount, NBC has landed “Runaway Bride” and “The General’s Daughter.”
Rupert Murdoch’s FX has picked up “Blair Witch Project,” by dint of an agreement that allows the Fox Network to lay claim to a run or two of “Witch.” Barry Diller’s USA Network has secured “Big Daddy.”
ABC did land “Notting Hill” from Universal and has first dibs on Disney’s “Tarzan.” Two late-July releases to which ABC has rights — Disney’s “Inspector Gadget” and DreamWorks’ “The Haunting” (ABC has an output deal for theatricals from DreamWorks) — should both end up pocketing close to $100 million in domestic box office.