France's TF1 rules TV ratings

But overall French TV viewership down in 2009

PARIS -- Leading French private TV network TF1 rang in the New Year with top ratings, boasting 96 of the country's most-watched shows in 2009, according to the group.

Music and sports proved the most popular entertainment with a concert from Gallic group Les Enfoires taking the top spot with 12.3 million viewers when it aired on March 6. The France vs Ireland soccer game came in second with 11.7 million viewers in November.

U.S. series continued to dominate with Fox drama "House" viewers' favorite show, topping the ratings at 10.2 million. U.S. series took 64 of the top 100 spots, seven more than in 2008 and 17 more than the year before.

As U.S. shows grew in popularity, French fictions continued to see a sharp decline, with just four of top 100 ratings of the year. Popular French titles included "Josephine, Ange Gardien" and "Survivor"-like reality show "Koh-lanta."

Feature films represented 11 of the top programs, with old-time favorite "La Grande Vadrouille" scoring 9 million viewers and new kids' hit "Asterix & Obelix: Mission Cleopatra" with 8.9 million viewers.

The French, however, didn't mobilize to watch their favorite shows as much this year -- the amount of programs with more than 10 million viewers dropped to just five in 2009, falling fast from nine in 2008, 33 in 2007 and 45 in 2006.
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