INTERESTING INSIGHT/Re: ABC Cancels The Revolution
Posted by Sywriter on 4/12/2012, 8:24 am, in reply to "ABC Cancels The Revolution"
Errol at SON explains the network scheduling process rather well IMO: |
"I'll touch on this in another article tomorrow, but General Hospital and all the soaps on ABC have historically never needed to wait for a "renewal" notice for planning future episodes of their shows.
The way things worked at ABC was a soap would hire an individual to do a job and said individual would be hired to do that job for a certain length of time, pending extensions to their contracts or new contracts being signed, but the show itself never had to worry about its future. As long as the show made the network money and ratings were good, no discussion was needed on the shows' future. When the show starts falling to certain levels, the network warn that things need to pick up or they'll start cutting budgets or worse fire the EP/Head Writer. Again, the show itself was never in danger. Once ABC stopped making money on All My Children and One Life to Live last season (in part due to the economy and the shows doing worse than GH in certain key demos), the two were canceled. That is what I was told by an off-the-record network representative last year.
Why did Revolution, AMC and OLTL happen to get canceled in April if ABC daytime shows don't get "renewals?" Simple, as stated in my article last month, ABC uses the month to inform its affiliates of its planning for its daytime schedule, although this traditionally occurred quietly and was unknown to most until ABC coined Black Thursday for soap fans last year. Does this mean that GH will remain on schedule through September 2013? Nope!
While General Hospital's cast, crew, etc are jumping for joy right now because their jobs appear safe, they shouldn't lose sight of the yellow brick road. They need to pick up those ratings ASAP! People say the show is better quality wise and production wise since Frank and Ron took over, but none of that has resonated in the ratings. GH may have made an uptick a few weeks ago and it was celebrated, but where are we now? The show may not be last place in demos, but it is down severely year-to-year in the demos that saved its butt from cancellation last year. Its ad rates are down year-to-year (last year I was told the soap gets less than 10k per 30-second spot, while AMC/OLTL hovered around 5-7k per 30-second spot), and its total audience is down as well. In the ratings data we've obtained for the year-ago week (week of March 28 - April 1, 2011) in comparison to the week of March 26-30, 2012, The View was (I believe) in originals and was beaten by GH in Women 18-34 (GH held a 69,000 viewer lead in that demo), Women 18-49 (GH held a 172,000 viewer lead in the demo) and Women 25-54 (GH held a 173,000 viewer lead there).
For the week of March 26-30, 2012, The View was in re-runs and beat GH by 331,000 total viewers and 40,000 Women 18-34 viewers. GH was just ahead of The View by 111,000 Women 18-49 viewers, while shockingly increasing its lead to 181,000 Women 25-54 viewers. If The View was in originals, there is no way GH would have beat it! On the year-ago, GH was below The View by just 297,000 viewers (3,017,000 for View and 2,720,000 for GH).
Back to the topic at hand, ABC could have easily aired anything they wanted at 2:00 PM ET/1:00 PM PT after announcing the cancellation of The Revolution, including re-runs of the soaps (as they did between the end of The City and preparation of Port Charles' debut in 1997), re-runs of The View, re-runs of primetime shows (past or present) or even worse re-runs of the Revolution itself. The fact that Disney/ABC executives went to their team at ABC News and is creating an all-new show called GMA In the Afternoon, even if for just 9 weeks, shows they still plan on developing new programming for their daytime schedule. When we spoke with a rep last year they stated ABC is looking to run their daytime schedule like they do primetime, where the show that performs best will hold a time slot, while the network could still in actuality look for shows to come in and out year-round (like they do with primetime!). If GMA In the Afternoon does as well as Today Show 2 and/or Today Show 3, it'll be a success and doom General Hospital. Why? Because as I said, ABC doesn't do "renewals." Because they don't do "renewals" they can easily cancel General Hospital at any time and decide to last air it 3 months after making the announcement of their decision. How can they do that? They own the show, they don't have a contract that requires them to air the show and they are footing 100% of their money to produce the show. If they don't feel like spending their allocated monies on a soap opera property as they decided not to do with AMC and OLTL, they find a new replacement. Enter The Chew and The Revolution as examples.
Until July, GH should be flying under the radar of Disney/ABC executives, but once those ratings start coming in for GMA In The Afternoon and they look better than GH in Women 18-49 and/or Women 18-34 (doesn't matter the total audience since it'll probably be similar), GH better prepare for some big stunts to lead into Katie to justify its time slot move or they could learn some bad news in the fall."