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Will PRIDE 7/1 Saitama show make it to PPV?

By Zach Arnold | June 8, 2006

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By Zach Arnold

The big question on everyone’s mind right now with Fuji TV canceling PRIDE is whether or not DSE will be able to stay on SkyPerfecTV PPV in Japan and be able to run PPVs internationally. This is a very complex issue, and one that will really test the company.

On the InDemand and PRIDE US sites, they have the 7/1 Saitama show listed as a PPV on the US for 7/2. In the past, Jerry Millen and his team of editors worked in conjunction with Fuji TV for footage. Fuji TV was paid a rental fee for the rights of their footage to be aired on US PPV. With Fuji TV now canceling their relationship with PRIDE, it presents several obstacles for the company to overcome.

For starters, the Fuji TV deal with PRIDE was a very lucrative one. Naigai Times claims that it was worth at least 2 billion yen, with the PPV component (of SkyPerfecTV) worth another billion yen. In addition, Fuji TV was responsible for the TV production and broadcasting through SkyPerfecTV. With no Fuji TV involvement in PRIDE now, who will help out in producing the show? This is not a simple matter of just getting 3 or 4 cameras and shooting the event. Fuji TV had very high-grade production equipment to make the shows look spectacular on television. While there are rumors that Samurai TV may be able to work with DSE on a smaller scale for filming the show, it’s going to be an extremely daunting task to be able to match the same resources that Fuji TV provided.

The second issue at hand is whether or not PRIDE will even be able to air their shows on SkyPerfecTV PPV. Fuji TV has a minority stake in SkyPerfecTV, and SkyPerfecTV is a PPV distributor on satellite. SkyPerfecTV is not always responsible for filming shows and being entirely hands-on in that regards. As seen with past pro-wrestling and MMA PPVs, it is the TV networks backing the groups (such as New Japan w/ TV-Asahi) that have helped on the production end of PPV shows. The rare exceptions to the rule would include promotions like All Japan who have ran PPVs in the past, but those shows have taken place in places like Osaka Prefectural Gym and are maybe 3 or 4 camera shoots. We’re not talking PRIDE-level camera quality with those shows. The reason PRIDE has such a good reputation for quality shows on TV is because they are able to blow away the competition as far as how to produce a show and having the resources to do it.

Even if SkyPerfecTV does continue broadcasting PRIDE shows on PPV, the questions facing DSE are critical. This is not an easy problem to solve in a short amount of time, especially considering the high-scale image that the company has had for big shows in the past. Can DSE manage to pull off shooting shows successfully without TV support?

Topics: All Topics, Japan, MMA, PRIDE, Zach Arnold | 4 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

4 Responses to “Will PRIDE 7/1 Saitama show make it to PPV?”

  1. Hong Kong Phooey says:

    Hey I have a question:

    Fuji’s contract with PRIDE began in 2000. That means PRIDE 1 through 9 were broadcasted and produced with a different company. Having watched those PRIDE’s, sure, they didn’t have all the bells and whistles for the fighter’s entrances, but I thought the video capture of the fights was still very good.

    My question is, who broadcasted and produced the early PRIDE shows, pre-Fuji-TV? Why wouldn’t PRIDE use this company or a similar company to broadcast its shows?

  2. Wayne says:

    Where is this info about Fuji TV cancelling pride coming from? According to Fujitv themselves they are broadcasting 7/1’s OWGP event
    http://www.fujitv.co.jp/sports/calendar/2006_07.html

  3. Zach Arnold says:

    [Where is this info about Fuji TV cancelling pride coming from? According to Fujitv themselves they are broadcasting 7/1’s OWGP event]

    You should go tell Mr. Sakakibara about this. He obviously doesn’t know what you know, based on his statements yesterday at the press conference.

  4. bushido says:

    yes shaolin you must be right.

    fujitv and pride had a gentleman’s agreement and wished each the best for the future

    maybe fujitv got sick of all those good ratings from pride programs and wanted to give pride a chance to make more money by going to another network

    anything is possible, right? its best to ignore the most obvious explanation for whats happening

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