×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

DirecTV bows PPV service for gay auds

Here! kicks off to company's subs beginning Aug. 29

DirecTV has become the first U.S. distributor to agree to carry a pay-per-view service directed at a gay and lesbian audience.

Here! Pay Per View service will offer four independently produced theatricals each month for a retail price of $3.99 apiece. Although the principals declined to comment on the split, DirecTV will keep about 60% of each retail dollar, with the other 40% going to Here! owners Paul Colichman and Stephen P. Jarchow.

Here! kicks off to all of DirecTV’s 11 million satellite homes beginning Aug. 29 with “Sordid Lives,” a comedy released by Here’s theatrical arm in 2002 and starring Olivia Newton-John, Beau Bridges, Delta Burke and Bonnie Bedelia. Here! is a division of Regent Entertainment, which has produced movies including “Gods & Monsters,” which won the Academy Award for adapted screenplay, and “Twilight of the Golds,” with Brendan Fraser and Faye Dunaway.

‘Merci’ on sked

Other movies planned for Here! pay-per-view include the Merchant-Ivory production of “Merci, Dr. Rey,” with Dianne Wiest and Vanessa Redgrave, and “Friends & Family,” with Tony Lo Bianco and Tovah Feldshuh.

Colichman said his eventual goal, possibly within the next year, is to turn Here! into a 24-hour-a-day cable network targeted to gays and lesbians. He deliberately decided against beginning with a 24-hour channel because of the barriers that prevented two proposed 24-hour nets from being launched last year despite elaborate pitches by their owners to cable operators and satellite distributors.

The two that flopped were an unnamed channel developed jointly by MTV and Showtime, and Pridevision, an American version of the existing Canadian network. They failed at least in part because operators became worried about a backlash from their subscribers, even though the two planned to charge a separate monthly fee for their services, as high as $10 a month for Pridevision.

No explicit films

Colichman said Here! will shun sexually explicit movies and videos. “We want mainstream, middle-of-the-road programming for gays and lesbians from the age of 16 on up,” he said.

“It’s important,” he added, “that talent agents and managers are comfortable bringing their clients to us… If people want porno, let them take it off the Internet.”

Colichman points to surveys estimating that there are between 25 million and 30 million gays and lesbians in the U.S., who spend upward of $450 billion a year.

More TV

  • Martin Short

    Martin Short Joins Whitney Cummings, Lee Daniels Amazon Comedy Pilot 'Good People'

    The cast of the Amazon comedy pilot “Good People” continues to grow, with Martin Short becoming the latest big name star to sign on to the project. Short joins previously announced cast members Lisa Kudrow, Greg Kinnear, and Whitney Cummings. Cummings is also writing and executive producing the pilot with Lee Daniels. “Good People” centers [...]

  • 100 Most-Watched TV Shows of 2018-19:

    100 Most-Watched TV Shows of 2018-19: Winners and Losers

    As traditional ratings continue to decline, so do the networks’ reliance on those numbers as a benchmark. Nowhere was it more noticeable than at this month’s upfronts presentations in New York, where the “r” word on everyone’s tongues wasn’t “ratings” — it was “reach.” Sure, everyone still touted their No. 1 status when they could [...]

  • Sam Champion

    Sam Champion Returns to Disney's WABC

    Sam Champion, one of the nation’s best-known weather anchors, will return to the station where he rose to greater fame. Walt Disney’s WABC said Champion would join its staff as a weather anchor on its weekday morning and noon newscasts. He will start Monday, June 3. He is expected to also contribute to ABC News. [...]

  • THE INBETWEEN -- "Pilot" Episode 101

    TV Review: NBC's 'The InBetween'

    There’s something to be said for a TV show that knows exactly what its lane is and fulfills its duties enough to hold together. NBC’s “The InBetween,” Moira Kirland’s new procedural billed as a “paranormal drama,” is a fan of just about every procedural cliche in the book, right down to the cheesy music following [...]

  • Contract Placeholder Business WGA ATA Agent

    Talent Agents Blast Verve Agreement With Writers Guild

    The lead negotiator for Hollywood’s talent agencies has again blasted the Writers Guild and its recent agreement with the Verve agency — and cautioned other agencies against following suit. Verve defected from the major agencies on May 16 when it became the first sizable Hollywood talent agency to sign the WGA’s Code of Conduct. That [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content