Apparently, there can be only one. At least if you’re Comcast and you’ve folded the popular Fearnet horror channel & news website into the much more insignificant Chiller horror channel. As of July 31st 2014, Fearnet is no more and there’s only one true 24/7 horror channel left standing, American Horrors. That’s right, Fearnet’s holdings have been dissolved, its websites pulled down and its social media silent.
“NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment has acquired all remaining interests in FEARnet from its productive venture with Lionsgate and Sony,” the company said in a statement to DeadlineHollywood.com through a spokesman. “FEARnet, along with its popular content, will be integrated into NBCU Cable Entertainment. This process will take place over a yet to be determined period of time.”
FEARnet, a cable channel, website, and VOD service, was launched on Halloween 2006 as a three-way partnership between Comcast, Lionsgate and Sony, each of them owning a third. Four months later, NBCUniversal launched its own horror-focused digital cable network much maligned & universally hated Chiller, which became part of Comcast’s portfolio via the company’s 2011 acquisition of NBCUniversal, which also included sci-fi network Syfy. While Comcast, Lionsgate and Sony worked together for more than seven years to build the FEARnet brand, it has been said that Lionsgate and Sony ultimately opted to monetize their minority stakes in what had been a noncore asset for them rather than continuing the flagging ratings plagued horror channel Fearnet.
“Fearnet was a worthy opponent in the horror channel world.” said American Horrors owner, Hart D. Fisher. “The competition pushed me to book better shows, bloodier shorts & cutting edge features that others might not have taken a chance on. I hate to admit this, but I’m going to miss having Fearnet breathing over my shoulder as the face of corporate horror. I only hope all of those folks who lost their jobs Fearnet find replacement work soon.”
FEARnet is expected to be folded mainly into Comcast/NBCU Cable Entertainment’s similarly thriller, suspense and horror-focused Chiller, though some content could also migrate to Syfy.