USA Net’s ‘Line’ up

Cabler nabs 'Thin Red Line,' 'Siege,' 'Kissed'

NEW YORK — USA Networks has purchased exclusive broadcast rights for five films, including “The Thin Red Line,” “The Siege” and “Never Been Kissed,” from 20th Television.

Two lower-grossing pictures, “Wing Commander” and “Ravenous,” are in the deal as well.

In a separately negotiated deal, USA purchased the exclusive broadcast rights to “Lake Placid” from 20th Television (Daily Variety, Aug. 12).

Neil Hoffman, senior VP of programming for USA, declined to comment on the deal’s price.

Networks usually pay about 15% of a film’s domestic box office gross. That would put USA’s price in the vicinity of $23 million for the six films.

Preem decision

Hoffman said that the cable programmer has not yet decided whether to premiere “Lake Placid” on USA or on its sister web Sci-Fi Channel. The horror-comedy film is available to USA in 2002.

USA will premiere “Never Been Kissed,” “The Siege” and “The Thin Red Line,” all of which are available to the cabler in 2001.

“Wing Commander,” starring Freddie Prinze Jr. as a fighter pilot battling space aliens, and “Ravenous,” starring David Arquette, Guy Pearce and Jeremy Davies in a story about soldiers and cannibalism, will both bow on Sci-Fi in 2001.

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