Upfronts 2012: MundoFox Looks to Break the Hispanic Network Mold

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MundoFox -- the upcoming Hispanic broadcast network from Fox International Channels and RCN Television Group -- is looking to break the mold established by nets like Univision and Telemundo.

How will it accomplish that? By offering its viewers more choice than the current "limited" options that exist, according to Fox Hispanic executives. Hernan Lopez, president & CEO, FIC, was quick to point out that "people had this same question 25 years ago when Fox was created."

"One of the first conclusions we arrived at when we decided to do MundoFox is that we won't beat [Univision and Telemundo] by doing more of the same," said Emiliano Saccone, MundoFox's president and general manager at Fox Hispanic Media's upfront presentation Wednesday in New York. Saccone went on to say that while the new network will feature "a new face" and "a new look," it will also be "familiar" to Hispanic viewers.

MundoFox's programming lineup will include a combination of telenovelas, teleseries, daily newscasts and live sports, as well as various family and children's programming. Lopez said MundoFox's lineup will cater to the "new Latino" by offering more variety than the "limited" options Hispanic viewers are currently saddled with. These will include more action and filming at more locations.

Two popular series among the Hispanic audience from FoxTelecolombia that had been airing on Univision's cable nets TeleFutura and Galavision -- El Capo and Kdabra -- will air exclusively on MundoFox.

Other new series coming to the network are the cop drama, Corazones Blindados, a Spanish-language version of the game show Minute to Win It (Minuto para Ganar) and the popular Brazilian comedy Amo de Casa. Spanish-dubbed versions of Fox's Bones and American Dad will round out the rest of MundoFox's weekly primetime lineup.

MundoFox's regular primetime lineup will begin at 6:30 p.m., in order to get a jump on the other networks that air their national news in that timeslot. Fernando Gaitan's Betty la fea (Ugly Betty) will air in its original 30-minute installments in this timeslot and Saccone says the goal is to "make Betty our very own I Love Lucy."

Saccone said the net's national newscast Noticias MundoFox will air live on both coasts at 6 p.m. daily, "so viewers in the internet age don't get breaking news from three hours ago." KWHY Los Angeles anchor Rolando Nichols will anchor the newscasts.

Lopez said that MundoFox has secured affiliates in 50 DMAs and will be carried in 70% of U.S. Hispanic households. To cater to the bilingual, MundoFox will air ads in both Spanish and English.

"It's clear that the media buying community wants more choice and a higher quality option for their Spanish-language advertising dollars," said Tom Maney, senior vice president, advertising sales, Fox Hispanic Media.

Lopez was bullish on the new network's possibilities. "Fox has a history of making breakthrough television through constant creative innovation," he said. "We've done it in English and we're going to do it in Spanish."

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