Many years ago I was taxed with the opportunity to help launch a horror-themed cable network. To say it was a daunting task is an understatement. Eventually FEARnet came along and they were more than up to the challenge. They did it right, but alas their ride has come to an end and today is a sad day for the Internet and horror community.
According to Deadline Comcast has bought out its partners in the joint venture — Sony Pictures Entertainment and Lionsgate Entertainment — to take 100% ownership of FEARnet. Following the transaction, which closed this morning, FEARnet will no longer be a stand-alone brand but will be folded into Comcast’s NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment division. “NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment has acquired all remaining interests in FEARnet from its productive venture with Lionsgate and Sony,” the company said in a statement to Deadline through a spokesman. “FEARnet, along with its popular content, will be integrated into NBCU Cable Entertainment. This process will take place over a yet to be determined period of time.”
FEARnet is expected to be folded mainly into Comcast/NBCU Cable Entertainment’s similarly thriller, suspense and horror-focused Chiller, though some content could also migrate to Syfy. 10 of FEARnet’s 25 employees will stay on through the transition. The other 15 are being let go today. FEARnet president Peter Block will stay at least through the transition.
Having worked with a lot of the network’s staff personally I can say that they’re an amazing bunch, and I’ve no doubt they will all go on to have a wonderfully bright future. So let’s raise a glass to ’em! Lawrence, Alyse, Peter, and the rest… thanks for all that you’ve done to legitimize the horror genre which is considered the bastard of the movie industry. And most of all… thank you in advance for all that you will continue to do.
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