Terrestrial web Cuatro has bought Spanish free-to-air rights to all six seasons of “Lost” from pubcaster Radio Television Espanola after the sci-fi suspenser flopped with its older demographic.
Disney-ABC-ESPN worked with RTVE and the younger-skewing Cuatro to find a more appropriate home for “Lost.”
The sale “forms part of our cost-cutting strategy,” said an RTVE spokesperson, as local broadcasters react to recession by rationalizing the shows they air.
“We’re excited to be launching ‘Lost’ with Cuatro, who are a well-matched home for the series, and have ambitious plans in terms of scheduling, marketing and promotional support,” said Francesca Tauriello, Disney-ABC-ESPN TV’s senior VP of program distribution in Europe, the Middle East and Asia (South).
Launched November 2005, the Sogecable-owned Cuatro has built its brand on U.S. shows such as “House,” which, now in its fifth season, punched a 16.6 share and 3.2 million viewers on Tuesday, way above Cuatro’s 8.9% channel average for March.
“ ‘Lost’ fits very well with our brand, and its finale looks set to be a worldwide TV phenomenon,” said Cuatro programming director, Fernando Jerez.
Cuatro will sked all six seasons of “Lost” so that its 2010 sixth-season finale will air a matter of weeks after the U.S., Jerez said.
The acquisition follows deals for HBO’s “True Blood” and Warner Bros. Intl. Television’s “Gossip Girl.”