Season 3 of Chucky comes to Syfy next week in the US. The show has found success in distribution among a variety of markets, with NBCUniversal successfully selling its first and second season to a wide variety of buyers. In a market where most US content is destined to appear on its own studio’s service internationally, Show Tracker reveals that Chucky’s vertical integration is limited to only four markets.
NBCUniversal prioritised its own Sky Max in the UK for a speedy premiere after its US debut, while opting for a Syfy release in Germany rather than a Sky branded channel. In Italy meanwhile Mediaset’s Italia 1 acquired the series, despite the presence of Sky in the market. Season one premiered with limited catch-up options but when Mediaset later acquired season two from NBCUniversal they were able to negotiate for stacking rights alongside its linear release.
Despite almost the entire Disney pipeline feeding into Disney+ in international markets the SVOD is engaging with some third party buyers including NBCUniversal. All seasons of Chucky so far have been acquired by Star+ in Latin America by Disney, with the show being branded as a Star+ exclusive.
In Canada Corus’ ongoing relationship as the home of Peacock Originals in Canada - spread across networks like Showcase and W Network - has been further supported by the acquisition of Chucky. This has resulted in over half of the media company’s acquisitions this year coming from NBCUniversal, with Corus acquiring both US and UK Sky series from the studio.
There have been a limited number of second windows sold of Chucky, with NBCUniversal able to extract extra value for the show in Germany after its vertically integrated debut by selling to RTL+. In its home territory of the US, AMC+ has acquired the series in the second window. A key opportunity for a second window buyer may lie in France as its original buyer, SALTO, has since shut down. As the service only had a limited reach a buyer may be able to acquire an affordable second window without worrying too much about the show being over exposed. This mirrors a similar opportunity that opened up to buyers when Lionsgate+ exited several markets.
As US content has become increasingly difficult to acquire its more important for local buyers than ever to stay on top of distributor activity, particularly as many studios have signalled that they intend to start licensing more content to third parties as their investors continue to encourage a renewed focus on profitability.
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