Brian Frons On SOAPnet Content: "The Original Programs Have Been Loss Leaders"


TV Guide Magazine'sMichael Logan pulled no punches speaking with ABC Daytime president Brian Frons. Logan chats with Frons regarding the mouse house's decision to kill SOAPnet in exchange for Disney Jr.

So SOAPnet’s original programming is no longer important? Was it ever?

Other than the last season of Being Erica, which we’ve bought and will air, we’re not going to put any more money into original programming. Frankly, the original programs have been loss leaders. They’ve helped us expand and experiment with other ways to tell soap opera stories on the channel, but they are not our bread and butter.

Logan also discusses with Frons SOAPnet's press releases about the ratings boom they've experience and if it was fiction or accurate.

Something doesn’t compute. We’re always getting press releases about SOAPnet’s remarkable success. In fact, one went out just a few weeks ago. Was that all bull?

This is not about SOAPnet doing badly. It’s about a bigger opportunity for the Disney Company. It’s very hard right now in the cable world to reach 75 million homes. It has taken us 10 years to achieve that. It’s much easier for Disney to transition a channel than to start one from scratch. Disney is very committed to the preschool brand. That preschool space is very important because that’s the way into kids’ lives. You get them at an early age, in the 2-to-7-year-old group, and then as they age they will migrate to the Disney Channel and to ABC. It’s important for Disney to get into that game in a bigger way.