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'Sex' Syndication Spells Boost for HBO DVDs

19 Sep, 2005 By: Jessica Wolf

The “Sex and the City” girls are slinking their fabulous Manolo Blahnik-wearing, martini-toting selves into network syndication this week, and HBO execs are prepping for that to spark renewed interest in DVD offerings.

“Certainly, ‘Sex and the City' going into syndication will generate awareness [for the DVDs] and sustain awareness and also expose the show to new viewers who may not have seen it on HBO,” said Sofia Chang, SVP of marketing for HBO Video. “We're in less households than the total TV households out there.”

HBO saw a surge of interest in “Sex and the City” DVDs when the sexy show hit cable channel TBS in a toned-down version this summer, Chang said.

The Sept. 19 “Sex and the City” network debut marks the first time an HBO-owned series has entered network syndication. Other series that started out on the cabler and migrated to “regular” TV were not owned by HBO.

Retail support is still strong for the show, which has a large and loyal following, Chang said.

Still, HBO is making sure there is something new for fans both new and old this holiday shopping season, with the Nov. 1 release of Sex and the City: The Complete Series.

The 20-disc set, priced at $299.95, includes every episode from the six-season pop-culture hit as well as a bonus disc packed with new features like trivia games, three alternate endings to the show's finale, interviews, never-before-seen footage, deleted scenes and more.

“Sex and the City” isn't the only DVD line with legs for the supplier.

Band of Brothers, which hit DVD November 2002, has been a consistent seller since its release. Retailers keep plenty of this title in stock regularly, Chang said, and sales saw another boost last month when the series aired on the History Channel.

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