Comedy Central India, the country’s only 24/7 comedy channel, has pulled off a coup by acquiring exclusive airing rights to the world’s most talked about comedy show – Anger Management — from Lionsgate International Television, the two companies announced today. The show has received a tremendous opening in the US & has a sensational buzz going for it, and its international success paved the way for one of the biggest acquisitions in recent times in the English entertainment space in India, where fans are eagerly awaiting its debut.
In the U.S, Anger Management broke a ratings record with 5.74 million viewers in its series debut and ranks as the most-watched sitcom premiere in cable history. Unlike most shows that are commissioned for an individual season at a time, the show’s astounding opening response has ensured that it has received a further 90 episode order.
Lionsgate International Television has already sold the series in more than a dozen territories worldwide, including Canada, Latin America, the UK, Scandinavia, Australia/New Zealand, Germany, Benelux, Poland, Spain and South Africa. Lionsgate’s (NYSE: LGF) Debmar-Mercury syndication arm distributes the show in the U.S. where, in addition to airing on F/X, it has already been sold into syndication with the Fox station group.
The series is based on the 2003 film of the same name and stars Charlie Sheen in a role similar to the one immortalised by Jack Nicholson from the film. In this new series, Charlie Sheen stars as ex-baseball player turned therapist specialising in anger management. The plot talks of how Charlie breaks his leg in anger, putting an end to his baseball career. He then becomes an anger management therapist who runs a successful private practice. A bunch of crazy patients, a hot female doctor who is his competition, a very confused daughter, a rebel ex-wife and his own pangs of anger, constantly bug Charlie making it even more difficult for him to keep his sanity.
Commenting on acquiring the rights to the new show, Ferzad Palia, SVP and GM – English Entertainment, Viacom 18 Media Pvt. Ltd., says, “On our first anniversary of Comedy Central in India we’re delighted to be bringing one of the most watched and talked about shows in the world, Anger Management, to our Indian audiences. In true Comedy Central style, expect unprecedented promotion, activation and fun around the show. We’re excited to play home to the next big thing in sitcom history.”
“We believe that Comedy Central is the perfect home for Anger Management in India, and we’re delighted to continue building the show’s momentum through ground breaking sales in territories around the world,” said Lionsgate President of Worldwide Television and Digital Distribution Jim Packer. “The show is off to a record-breaking start in the U.S., and we expect it to have similar resonance with audiences around the world.”
Anger Management is produced by Lionsgate Television in conjunction with Roth and Totino’s Revolution Studios, Burg’s Evolution Entertainment, Helford’s Mohawk Productions, Inc. and Estevez Sheen Productions. The deal was arranged by Rohit Tiwari at Morris St. Advisors who are Lionsgate’s partners and agents in India.