U.K.'s ITV4 to Air A&E Hit Show 'Duck Dynasty'

"Duck Dynasty"

The show is produced by Gurney, one of the U.S. production firms that ITV CEO Adam Crozier's team has acquired as part of a shopping spree designed to diversify the British broadcaster's revenue.

LONDON – U.K. TV giant ITV's digital network ITV4 has acquired Duck Dynasty, the A&E hit show produced by U.S. production firm Gurney Productions, in which ITV recently bought a controlling stake.

ITV CEO Adam Crozier mentioned the program acquisition during a half-year earnings conference call while discussing the company's recent series of acquisitions of TV producers, including in the U.S. His team has been looking to diversify the broadcaster's revenue beyond TV advertising.

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Crozier also said that there were more benefits to come as the slew of recent acquisitions are being digested. ITV bought a 61.1 percent stake in Gurney for $40 million in December.

ITV4 is a digital channel that focuses on male viewers. Its programming includes sports, cop shows, U.S. comedies and dramas, as well as classic ITV action series from the 1960s and 1970s. Among its shows are Kojak, Magnum P.I., Batman, Miami Vice, Cheers, The Saint and Saturday Night Live.

Management didn't immediately say when the show about a duck-calling device family business in Louisiana will air. It is one of the highest-rated reality cable shows in the U.S.

ITV struck a deal with A&E Networks International for the U.K. rights to Duck Dynasty since it handled the rights, Broadcast magazine reported. The international arm of cable networks powerhouse A&E Networks has offices in New York, London and Singapore.

Gurney's other shows include Auction Hunters, American Digger and Haunted Collector.

E-mail: Georg.Szalai@THR.com
Twitter: @georgszalai