History Channel Buys Reveille Military Show

Nov 19, 2007  •  Post A Comment

The History Channel will take a close look at private military operations in a new series being produced by Reveille and Cabana 9.
The idea of a private military may have some negative connotations now because of the controversy surrounding the actions of the Blackwater Group and others in Iraq, but these special units have been conducting missions for the U.S. since the Revolutionary War.
The new eight-episode series, tentatively titled “Eyes on the Target,” will follow an elite unit taking part in a legally sanctioned operation in the field.
The production will have access to private operations that it couldn’t get from a military unit, according to Nancy Dubuc, executive VP and general manager of the History Channel. All precautions are being taken to ensure that the production doesn’t endanger the success of the mission, she added.
“’Eyes on the Target’ is an action-packed, exciting program that will offer a never-before-seen look at the secretive world of high-stakes military operations,” said Howard Owens, managing director of Reveille.
Al Edgington, partner at Cabana 9, a production company whose other partners include a former British special services operative and a former Green Beret, said private operators in the show will be using the most advanced equipment in conducting real missions.
“For the first time ever, audiences will see how a special forces team conducts operations from start to finish,” he said.
During those missions, the special forces team will often use techniques, surveillance for example, that have been developed over the course of military history, Ms. Dubuc said.
“This is an absolutely contemporary way to tell historical stories,” she said.
Private groups have been involved in campaigns from the American Revolution to Falluja in Iraq.
Reveille has worked with History Channel and its sibling A&E on some pilots in the past, but this is the first series it’s done for the channel, Ms. Dubuc said.
Reveille co-founder Ben Silverman is now co-chairman of NBC Entertainment, but was not involved in the pitch. NBC is a part owner of A&E Television Networks.
Ms. Dubuc took over at History Channel in December and has revamped its programming, driving the median age of the network’s viewers to under 50 for the first time ever for a quarter during the third quarter.
History Channel ranked 18th in total viewers among ad-supported cable networks during the third quarter. Viewership among viewers 18-49 rose 16% in the quarter.
(Editor: Baumann)


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