In Depth

Escape and Grit Announce First Programming Agreement, Acquire Rights to 135 Motion Pictures From Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution

Press release from Katz Broadcasting, June 10, 2014:

The country’s first-ever female-centric and male-centric over-the-air broadcast television networks -- Escape (For Women) and Grit (For Men) -- have acquired the television rights to 135 demo-targeted motion pictures in a multi-year licensing agreement with Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution (WBDTD), it was announced today.  The agreement is the first programming acquisition for the two networks launching this summer.

Escape will target women 25-54 with a brand of programming anchored in stories of crime and mystery. Warner Bros. drama and thriller titles earmarked for Escape include: The contemporary classic Body Heat starring Kathleen Turner; Demi Moore in Disclosure; the Nicole Kidman thrillers Dead Calm and Malice; Kathy Bates creating Misery for James Caan, based on the Stephen King story; Bates in another King tale, Dolores Claiborne with Jennifer Jason Leigh; Copycat starring Sigourney Weaver; Blink with Madeline Stowe and Cate Blanchett as Charlotte Gray; John Grisham’s Presumed Innocent; Michelle Pfeiffer in Tequila Sunrise; Star 80 and more.

Action-oriented Grit will reach men 25-54 and be built around the classic male hero archetype with a focus on western, war and action theatrical motion pictures.  Among the stars and titles headed to Grit in the WBDTD agreement: Clint Eastwood - As Dirty Harry in Sudden Impact, leading the charge in Kelly’s Heroes and also Bronco Billy; Arnold Schwarzenegger in Eraser; Sylvester Stallone in Cobra, Demolition Man and Victory; Jackie Chan starring in Rumble in the Bronx and Jackie Chan’s First Strike; Steven Seagal (Hard to Kill, Fire Down Below, On Deadly Ground and Out of Reach); Denzel Washington (Fallen) and more.

Grit also lands such westerns as the John Wayne classics Cahill, U.S. Marshall, Chisum and The Cowboys; Young Guns and Young Guns 2; The Assassination of Jessie James by the Coward Robert Ford starring Brad Pitt and such war and military movies as Stanley Kubrick’s Full Metal Jacket, Memphis Belle and Purple Hearts.

Escape and Grit were just announced and already have made tremendous distribution gains. Univision Television Group, which owns and/or operates television stations in major U.S. markets, will carry both Escape and Grit on stations representing more than 35% of U.S. television households, including in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, Houston and Miami.  The two new networks are part of Katz Broadcasting, a new company established by current Bounce TV founder/COO and former Turner Broadcasting executive Jonathan Katz.

Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution  is one of the leading distributors of entertainment programming to the domestic television marketplace, distributing first-run syndicated series, off-network television programs and theatrical motion pictures to local broadcast television stations, as well as to pay, cable, satellite and broadcast networks throughout the U.S. WBDTD distributes first-run syndicated series from Telepictures Productions; off-network television programs from Warner Bros. Television, Warner Bros. Animation and Warner Horizon Television, as well as selected HBO Independent Productions and the Lorimar Television library; current feature films from Warner Bros. Pictures; and additional titles from the Studio’s unmatched film and television library.