TV

Muse defends “The Kennedys,” Shaw Media “committed to” production

As Montreal-based Muse Entertainment scrambles to find a new U.S. broadcast home for The Kennedys, Canadian broadcaster Shaw Media is standing by the controversial mini-series.
January 12, 2011

As Montreal-based Muse Entertainment scrambles to find a new U.S. broadcast home for The Kennedys, Canadian broadcaster Shaw Media is standing by the controversial mini-series.

“Shaw Media is committed to the production of The Kennedys and will broadcast the production in Canada as planned, in spring 2011,” said Barbara Williams, senior VP of content at the broadcaster, in a statement.

Amid criticism about the historical veracity of the lavish eight-part series which was axed by A&E Television Network’s History late Friday, Shaw Media said it is waiting for confirmation of a replacement U.S. home for The Kennedys before finalizing a Canadian airdate and launch plans.

The broadcaster also said it is undecided on whether to air the mini-series on its Global Television conventional network, or one of its specialty channels.

Waiting to see which U.S. broadcaster finally lands The Kennedys may enable Shaw Media to schedule a simulcast to take advantage of American media spill to publicize the Canadian bow.

Executives at Muse Entertainment insist a number of U.S. networks are currently screening the mini-series, which was coproduced by Asylum Entertainment. The Canadian producer expects an announcement on a new U.S. deal to come within two weeks.

The mini-series has been licensed in over 30 territories worldwide and all networks, so far, are standing firm, Muse added.

Shaw Media and other international broadcasters of The Kennedys are apparently beyond the reach of the actual Kennedy family which, according to U.S. media reports, may have put pressure on A&E Television Networks to pull the plug on airing the controversial mini-series in the spring.

Muse president Michael Prupas has strongly defended the historical accuracy of the project, insisting executives at A&E and History signed off on the project’s scripts and final cuts before eventually insisting on that The Kennedys was “no longer a fit” for its brand.

“All who worked on the production made every effort to faithfully and honestly tell the Kennedy family story,” Prupas said in a statement.

“We meticulously researched all story points and made sure they were supported by multiple respected and objective sources. We are confident that we accurately and authentically recreated each of the events that occurred,” he added.

From Playback Daily

About The Author
Meagan Kashty is an associate editor of realscreen, an international print and online magazine that covers the non-fiction film and television industries. Meagan is an award-winning business journalist. Prior to joining the realscreen team, Meagan was online editor of Canadian Grocer, named Magazine of the Year at the 2015 Canadian Business Media Awards. She can be reached at mkashty@brunico.com, and you can follow her on Twitter @MegKashty

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