Cable provider Comcast has begun creating a slew of specialty cable channels in the past few years, including my favorite channel Troma TV in the On Demand area. Deadline is now reporting that their latest addition will be El Rey, to be run by Robert Rodriguez. The network is said to be “an action-packed, general entertainment network in English for Latino and general audiences that includes a mix of reality, scripted and animated series, movies, documentaries, news, music, comedy, and sports programming. The El Rey network will include programming that features Hispanic producers, celebrities and public figures.”
According to the article, they have agreed to launch by January 2014. A prime example of how VOD can expand the reach of a genre to a wide, national audience, the new channel will have a mission as laid out by Rodriguez and his partner in the venture, John Fogelman:
“This partnership with Comcast signals an important moment for the Latino community in this country – we are passionate about creating a wildly entertaining destination that we can be proud of by appealing to both Latino and mass market audiences. We engineered El Rey to address a burgeoning opportunity to deliver unique, high-quality and compelling content to a hard-to-reach demographic and are excited to bring more opportunities to generations of talent, storytellers and dreamers through this special partnership.”
Which has basically been Rodriguez’s operating method since day one, often leaping from genre to genre but always staying unique in his approach. This is a continuation of that theory, since technology has allowed the cost of a nationwide broadcast like this to become cheap enough for channels aimed at specific demographics, something providers of entertainment couldn’t do easily as little as 5 years ago.