FX swooped in to acquire Warner Bros.' Hangover 2, which was a monster hit over the Memorial Day weekend, earning $137 million in its first five days of release.
FX likely paid on the high end of the 8% to 12% of domestic box office that basic cable nets tend to pay for theatricals. In addition, the cable net also acquired Warner Bros.' Hall Pass and Something Borrowed, two films that performed less well at the box office.
Hangover 2 -- starring Bradley Cooper, Zach
Galifianakis and Ed Helms -- is expected to premiere on FX in late 2013, although home video and premium cable windows will set the calendar for basic cable and other windows.
FX has been on a roll lately, also acquiring Marvel and DreamWorks Animation's Thor and Captain America, as well as Kung Fu Panda 2 and the upcoming Puss in Boots.
In general, FX leans towards acquiring movies instead of off-net series to build its brand and promotional platform so it can launch original series, such as Peabody Award-winner Justified. The network is up 18% in total viewers and 16% in adults 18-49 this year compared to last, and part of that gain is due to the strong performance of the Robert Downey Jr.-starrer Iron Man.