Netflix, already in talks with 20th Century Fox TV about possibly picking up recently cancelled Fox series Terra Nova, may also be eying another freshman drama that is facing cancellation, ABC’s The River. I’ve learned that the streaming giant has had conversations with The River producer ABC Studios about the possibility of continuing the thriller/horror series on Netflix. Sources stress that the talks are exploratory at this point in the context of a larger conversation between ABC Studios and Netflix. The River never got traction on ABC, finishing its midseason run with a 1.4 18-49 rating for its finale on Tuesday. But it is the type of show — heavily serialized genre series — that works well on streaming services like Netflix. The River‘s Live+7 ratings bump, 36% vs. Live+Same Day according to most recent available data, is solid though not as high as that of Terra Nova (44%), which also was higher-rated overall. DVR ratings are indicative of how many viewers prefer to “stream” a show on their own timetable instead of watching it the night it airs. Unlike Terra Nova, The River has not been officially canceled by ABC, though that is considered a foregone conclusion. Also, since the series is produced by ABC’s own production arm, the network probably won’t stand in the way of a deal that would make money for its sister studio.
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