CBS, Lion Bonding

Eye nabs b'cast rights to 'World' for $20 mil

CBS now owns the “World.”

The Eye has nabbed first network broadcast rights to MGM’s “The World Is Not Enough” for an estimated $20 million. Pierce Brosnan’s third go-round as the international agent has already raked in $91 million at the box office.

CBS had the inside track on the latest Bond pic. As part of its deal a few years back for the rights to the last Bond movie, “Tomorrow Never Dies,” the net won a first-look option for at least one future Brosnan-toplined Bond feature.

“World” isn’t the only pic on the move. TNT is planning to give a new lease on life to the animated movie “The Iron Giant” by showcasing it in primetime before the picture winds up on the Cartoon Channel.

Warner Bros., which produced and distributed “Iron Giant,” and is a sister company of TNT, has engineered the following theatrical-movie deals with NBC and Turner Broadcasting’s TBS and TNT.

NBC, mindful of the fact that George Clooney became a star on the network’s “ER” series, has bought two runs of the Clooney picture “Three Kings” in an exclusive two-year broadcast window that will kick off in the fall of 2002. In addition, “Kings” scribe John Ridley is a writer and producer on the Peacock’s frosh drama “Third Watch.”

As part of the “Kings” deal, NBC also bought the second runs of two Warners’ movies that will premiere on TBS: “Deep Blue Sea” and “The Chill Factor.”

An NBC spokeswoman declined comment. One source said NBC’s license fee will come to about $9 million for the three pictures.

TBS and TNT have picked up an exclusive four-year network window of “House on Haunted Hill” for a license fee of about $6 million. And Turner has bought “The Bachelor” from another sister company, New Line Cinema, for about $3.5 million.

“The Iron Giant,” which movie critics and children’s advocates praised when it opened this summer, failed at the box office, winding up with a domestic gross of about $23 million.

Warner Bros. sold it to the Cartoon Network, but the license fee of $3 million or so proved too rich for Cartoon’s blood. So TNT came in on a six-month pre-Cartoon Network window. TNT will get six runs of “Iron Giant” within that window, shouldering a big portion of the license fee.

Both TNT and Cartoon plan to heavily promote the movie, treating it as a special picture that got lost in the shuffle when it hit the U.S. multiplexes.