Pro7Sat.1 to get first pick of Warner film, TV


COLOGNE, Germany -- Commercial broadcaster Pro7Sat.1 has signed a first-look deal with Warner Bros. International Television that is said to be worth up to $300 million over three years, according to sources.

While a spokesman at WBITV in Los Angeles refused to comment on financial aspects of the agreement, he did confirm that a deal is in place.

The agreement delivers the German group the full slate of Warners films for the next three years and will allow Pro7 to cherry pick new Warners-produced TV series through the 2009-10 season.

The theatrical package includes such upcoming tentpoles as "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," "Rush Hour 3" and "Ocean's 13."

Warner Bros. has a lucrative deal with Herbert Kloiber's Tele-Muenchen Group for German TV rights to the studio's 2006 feature output. Among the titles included in that package are "Superman Returns," Martin Scorsese's "The Departed" and the Clint Eastwood-helmed World War II epic "Flags of Our Fathers."

On the TV side, Pro7 will get first pick of new Warner Bros. series, taking German rights for the entire length of the shows' run. Any programs Pro7 passes on can be sold by Warners to competitors in the territory.

Pro7Sat.1 already airs several Warner Bros. series across its various channels: "Charmed," "The O.C." and "Two and a Half Men" run on Pro7; "Without A Trace" runs on Sat.1; and Kabel 1 airs "Cold Case."

Other Warners shows scattered across the German dial include "Smallville" on RTL, "The Closer" and "Gilmore Girls" on Vox and "Veronica Mars" on pubcaster ZDF.