Sci Fi Renews Farscape for Two Years

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Sci Fi Channel has locked up its signature series for at least two more
seasons.

The network made a 44-episode commitment to Farscape, ensuring that
the popular skein will remain on the channel for a fourth and fifth season,
president Bonnie Hammer announced Monday.

According to a Sci Fi spokeswoman, Farscape's fourth season will bow
sometime in the middle of 2002. The show has four more original episodes left in
its third season. This quartet of installments will hit the airwaves, beginning
in January, as part of Sci Fi's 'Friday Prime' franchise. The show is currently
airing Monday through Thursday at 8 p.m.

The critically acclaimed series stars Ben Browder (Party of Five), and
it was created by Rockne S. O'Bannon (Alien Nation, Seaquest DSV).
It is produced in Australia by The Jim Henson Co. in association with Hallmark
Entertainment.

'We are excited to renew our commitment to this smart, sexy, intelligent and
fun series that rewrites the book on sci-fi entertainment,' Hammer said in a
prepared statement. 'Farscape is not only the most ambitious original series
on basic cable, but we think it's one of the best-written shows on television,
period. It's no wonder that it's the top-rated series on Sci Fi for three years
running.'

During the season to date, the 18 Farscape premiere episodes are
averaging a 1.3 household rating, translating into 881,000 households, according
to Nielsen Media Research data supplied by Sci Fi. That compares with the first
season's 1.1 ratings average.

Sci Fi also said the series has been experiencing strong growth among women.
The show's third season has produced a 50 percent gain among women 18 through 49
versus its first-season average. The acceleration is even greater among women 25
through 54, advancing 59 percent versus the first-season numbers.

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