Beeb’s high on ‘Medium’

Par sells crime drama to the pubcaster

LONDON — Paramount has sold NBC crime series “Medium” to the BBC, which has U.K. terrestrial rights.

The pubcaster has picked up the show, starring Patricia Arquette, despite a government warning not to buy U.S. content unless it serves a “public purpose.”

It’s the first time the BBC has bought a U.S. series for its main terrestrial web, BBC1, since “Band of Brothers” in 2001.

On that occasion, then controller of BBC1 Lorraine Heggessey decided the program was not commercial enough for the web and switched it to BBC2, which serves more upscale viewers.

“Medium” is likely to air in a post-10:30 p.m. weekday slot starting this summer.

“We bought ‘Medium’ because it is a different take on the procedural detective drama and fits in with the BBC’s brief to provide audiences with distinctive shows,” said head of series acquisitions Sue Deeks. “It’s a very unusual piece.”

It is not clear if other British webs expressed interest in the show.