12:53pm PT by Michael O'Connell
TV Ratings: Dueling Beyonce Specials Bring Big Numbers to HBO and OWN
Beyonce was good business for cable networks on Saturday night.
HBO's intimate documentary about the singer, Beyonce: Life Is but a Dream, pulled 1.8 million viewers during its inaugural outing at 9 p.m. ET. It's the largest audience for a HBO doc since Nielsen revised its method of measuring viewership in 2004.
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The only other documentary to approach Beyonce's haul was previous record holder When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts. The Spike Lee miniseries about the devastation caused to New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina earned 1.7 million viewers in 2006.
Life Is but a Dream's handsome haul pulled three times the ratings of recent first-runs for HBO's Sunday series Girls.
Beyonce's presence was also felt on OWN. The recently ubiquitous multi-hyphenate sat down for a new episode of Oprah's Next Chapter. The one-hour interview, premiering at 8 p.m., averaged just above 1.3 million viewers.
Topping all of ad-supported cable's non-sports programs in the targeted women 25-54 demographic in the time period.