On Monday, one of my esteemed colleagues at a competing website, posted a rather eye-catching tabloid headline saying that Passions was cancelled – again! Not quite. Not really. It’s a possibility, but let’s look at this from a positive standpoint.
First of all, DirecTV has ordered another 52 episodes of Passions that will take it through August, 2008, fulfilling their initial one-year contract to air the program. Ordering the 52 episodes is a good thing, my cyber friends. Will they contract for a second year and beyond? Too soon to tell. Even the spokesperson for the satellite network stated that “It is premature to discuss the future of ‘Passions’ beyond the summer airings on Direct TV."
Yes, taping of these additional 52 episodes ends in late March (March 28, 2008 to be exact). But that doesn’t mean that the show is gone for good and that taping won’t resume again shortly thereafter. Here’s why:
1) DirecTV could order more episodes
2) Universal Media Studios could and would shop the show to other outlets.
3) Cable channels like Oxygen (now owned by NBC Universal) would be a perfect fit and distributing Passions to Oxygen would seem a likely move on the part of NBC. Fans who could not or would not subscribe to DirecTV for whatever reason, could now, once again, get their dose of Passions on a cable network that is part of a basic cable package in most markets. The viewers Passions lost in the DirecTV deal would return in spades.
And another thing! How many of you contacted us stating unequivocally that you hated the fact that Passions was now on DirecTV and that you wanted it back on network. We even got an email today from Soapdom member Greta G who stated: “Hi, I just want to say I am very upset at whoever took Passions off of NBC and put on the satellite network. I haven’t watched it since then. Please bring it back to regular TV.”
Greta G is not alone. I can’t tell you how many email and snail mail we received from fans who were upset that they could no longer watch Passions unless they signed up for the paid DirecTV service. Some Soapdom visitors unfortunately could not even get DirecTV service in their particular part of the country.
Although Soapdom believes that NBC made a groundbreaking move after canceling Passions to try to get it distributed elsewhere, we do feel that perhaps DirecTV was not the best choice. Passions demographic is primarily young teens. Young teens are a much sought after market as they are the decision makers of tomorrow. But today, their direct purchasing power is contingent on their parents’ approval and in most cases their weekly allowance. Not enough to subscribe to a paid satellite service.
So, this is what we recommend. You now have a chance to be heard by the decision makers -- the people who green light the money to continue to make Passions. Write to them via snail mail and tell them how much you want to see Passions back on “regular tv,” as Soapdom member Greta G so eloquently stated. Write to the production company at this address:
c/o Universal Media Studios
3000 W. Alameda Avenue
Burbank, CA 91523
Write today, write often. Let them know how you feel and maybe, just maybe, Passions will return to regular tv in the fall of 2008. Fans have brought shows back before. It can happen again and that show could be Passions. Go for it!
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