'Black Sails' Tallies Bounty of Starz Viewership Records

Pirates Saga's Debut Scores 3.5M Watchers across Myriad Platforms, Notches Best Saturday Night, Opening Weekend Deliveries

The premiere of Starz’s pirate series captured a treasure trove of Nielsen booty, yielding some 3.5 million viewers across various platforms.

Black Sails, a prequel to Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic Treasure Island, became the most widely watched original series debut in the premium channel’s history, following its opening weekend on Saturday, January 25.

Bowing on Jan. 25 at 9 p.m. on Starz and flanked by a bounty of encores on its linear networks, Blacks Sails cast anchor with more than 2.6 million viewers, according to Nielsen live+same-day figures. The performance surpassed The White Queen, making Black Sails the biggest Starz series premiere weekend ever.

Gauged on a live+same-day basis, Black Sails’ Saturday telecasts, including 850,000 for the aforementioned linear debut, tallied 1.7 million total viewers, the most ever for Starz new series premiere night.

Additionally, Starz garnered another 900,000 watchers from early returns on an expansive, week-long sampling campaign that encompassed its own platforms, on-demand vehicles from its MPVD affiliates and initiatives with a number of over-the-top providers.

Starz executives expect that total will grow significantly when results from additional multiplex encores, extended DVR viewing, Starz Play, free-on-demand offerings and other digital platforms are finalized later this week.