'House of Cards,' NBCU Series Licensed by Movie Channel in Russia

Grimm episodic 1 - H 2016
Courtesy of NBC

'Pure Genius,' 'Emerald City,' 'Grimm' and 'The Blacklist: Redemption' are among the shows that will air in the country starting in January.

Viasat World has secured deals with NBCUniversal and Sony Pictures for five scripted Hollywood shows to air on its flagship movie channel in Russia, Ukraine and the CIS region starting in January.

Pure Genius, Grimm, Emerald City, House of Cards and The Blacklist: Redemption will air on TV1000 Premium HD in first-run showings for the territories. Sony Pictures Television handles worldwide distribution for Netflix original House of Cards, and NBCU handles the other shows.

The subscription channel presents "award-winning and critically acclaimed titles" and marks the annual Oscars ceremony with a special selection of Academy Award winners of recent years. Its inventory includes many titles that have won critical acclaim internationally at the BAFTAs, Golden Globes, the Cannes Film Festival and other top events. It focuses on first-run premium movies aired a couple of months after their cinematic release.

In a separate deal, Viasat World also has secured a two-year deal with Sony Pictures for 50 film and TV titles for TV1000 in Central Europe.

The deals reflect Viasat World's policy of "broadening its offering by expanding its premium channel content in key markets across Europe, with ongoing investment in Russia and the CIS, as well as Ukraine," the company said.

TV1000 will screen not just new episodes, but also a catalog of past seasons through its TV1000 Play online service. Viasat says it is responding to a growing demand in Russia for such content.

"In just over three years, Russian viewers have almost doubled their viewing time on pay TV channels, with a particular focus on film and TV series," said a company spokeswoman, adding that TNS Russia figures show daily viewing had gone from 38 minutes in 2013 to 66 minutes this year.