Brit nets snap up hot U.S. shows

Beeb secures U.K. rights to teen drama 'Falcon Beach'

The BBC and Channel 4, the U.K.’s commercially funded pubcaster, have nabbed exclusive British rights to some of the hottest shows from last month’s L.A. Screenings.

Beeb has secured U.K. rights to teen drama “Falcon Beach” from Fremantle Intl. Distribution.

The 26-parter, which the pubcaster hopes will repeat the success of “The OC” (a hit in Blighty for E4) is likely to air in a late afternoon slot.

Show is the second acquired by the U.K. pubcaster from the screenings after Paramount medical saga “3 lbs.”

“Falcon Beach” has sold to 18 countries.

Meanwhile, C4 has outbid terrestrial rival ITV and satcaster BSkyB for Warner Bros. sitcom “The Class,” created by David Crane (“Friends”), reputedly stumping up more than £300,000 ($552,006) an episode.

The web, polishing its reputation for airing high-end U.S. shows following its success with “Desperate Housewives” and “Lost,” nabbed Buena Vista Intl. skeins “Betty the Ugly,” based on the Colombian telenovela, and “Brothers and Sisters,” starring Calista Flockhart and Rachel Griffiths.

ITV also picked up Warners’ “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip,” from Aaron Sorkin, despite strong bidding from ITV, Five and BSkyB.

C4 declined to provide details of how much coin was involved. “We were extremely satisfied with the prices that we paid,” said a spokeswoman.

C4 also bought U.K. rights to NBC thriller “Kidnapped,” but the paperwork is still being finalized.

It is unclear how the broadcaster intends to air the shows, but with three acquisitions-hungry channels up and running — Channel 4, E4 and More4 — and a video-on-demand service due to bow this fall, C4 has a lot of space to fill.

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