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‘9/11’ makes early TV date with Spain

Feevee will air doc on Oct. 25

MADRID — The world TV premiere of Michael Moore’s “Fahrenheit 9/11” looks set — in Spain.

Premium pay channel Canal Plus Espana will air the Bush-bashing docu Oct. 25, eight days before the U.S. presidential election.

It will screen at 10 p.m., repeat a half-hour later on a multiplexed channel and air for the final time at 10 p.m. Oct. 26.

The broadcasts will smash Spanish release windows. Canal Plus normally screens pics 12-18 months after their theatrical bow, after DVD/VHS and PPV screenings, but “Fahrenheit 9/11” opened theatrically here July 23.

“Fahrenheit” will bow on DVD in Spain on Nov. 10, distribbed by indie video consortium Cameo. It has skipped PPV.

The deal comes after what Canal Plus Espana owner Spanish pay TV leader Sogecable called an arduous negotiation with Spanish distribber Alta Films.

Deal also reflects Sogecable’s new policy of buying must-have pics from Spanish indies, in this case at a must-show time.

“Fahrenheit” grossed E3.9 million ($4.3 million) through October, making it the highest-grossing doc in Spain.

In a country where 85% of Spaniards opposed the U.S. invasion of Iraq, Sogecable had already prepped a pre-election theme week on Canal Plus called Agitation USA, including screenings of “Capturing the Friedmans,” “Dogville” and “Elephant” as well as inhouse doc “Stop Bush,” a take on rank-and-file activism.

According to Enrique Gonzalez Kuhn, Alta’s head of acquisitions, Sogecable paid a bit more than normal for films of this kind for an early broadcast of “Fahrenheit.”

“The film of course has a terrific contemporary punch. That’s why we’re so keen to get it on the air before the elections. But we’re confident that pay TV screenings could help the subsequent DVD launch, which will have lots of extras,” he said.

German terrestrial broadcaster ProSieben airs Moore’s doc Nov.1.

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