Sharknado 3 Gets Mediocre Ratings, Tons of Tweets, and a Sequel

24 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Sharknado 3’ ratings sink.

At the end of all the shark-fueled destruction of much of the Eastern seaboard and large portion of Hollywood’s D-List on Syfy last night, the channel revealed that they had a twist ending in mind for Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!More sharks and more celebrity cameos turned up for Syfy’s third installment of its low-budget, over-the-top disaster/horror/sci-fi/comedy franchise “Sharknado,” but that didn’t translate to more viewers. The original in July 2013 drew a modest 0.4 demo rating and 1.37 million viewers for its premiere, but social media helped turn into a minor cultural phenomenon and a couple of replays actually fared better in the ratings. Cast your vote for Sharknado 4,” squeals the headline over a picture of a screaming Reid covered in blood and gore. “Sharknado 3 may have devoured half of America’s celebrities, but there are still hungry fans and sharks to feed, so the adventure continues — not in a galaxy far, far away, but on your television sets next July,” promised Chris Regina, a senior programming executive at Syfy, in a statement.

As space shuttle debris hurtled toward star Tara Reid, an announcer told viewers, “You decide if April lives or April dies by tweeting your choice now or by going to Sharknado.syfy.com to vote. Last Wednesday during the same 9-11 p.m. window, for example, Syfy averaged a 0.3 rating in 18-49 and 888,000 total viewers for a telecast of the 2011 theatrical “The Deep Blue Sea.” Also, “Sharknado 3″ was cable’s No. 1 original program for the night in adults 25-54 (1.0 rating) as well as total viewers, and Syfy was the No. 1-rated cable network from 9 to 11 p.m. in 18-49, 25-54 and total viewers. Still, it was a hit in social media, drawing 360,000 event-related tweets seen by a unique audience of 4.5 million, according to Nielsen, though that also marked a steep decline from last year’s 581,000 tweets for Sharknado 2: The Second One., The first movie, which averaged just 1.4 million viewers in 2013 but climbed in reruns, claimed 318,000.

Her fate will be revealed in Sharknado 4 … because we’re not done yet!” The announcement is a daring play for engagement from a franchise that’s built itself on the fickle support of social media. Syfy reports that the film generated 2 billion Twitter impressions — that’s “billion,” with a “b” — an amount twice as high as that generated by the second Sharknado movie in 2014.

Need more proof the world is ending? “Generating more Twitter activity than every episode of the final season of Mad Men, every episode of this season’s The Bachelor and Hillary Clinton’s presidential announcement, Sharknado 3 trended #1 in the United States and #2 worldwide,” a release boasts. Needless to say, Syfy and schlockmasters The Asylum have announced that they’re teaming up for a fourth Sharknado movie, “expected to make landfall in July 2016.” The fourquel may or may not feature Sharknado staple Tara Reid: Syfy is letting fans decide whether her character will survive into the next movie. Another USA TODAY review said Sharknado 3 was filled with death, weapons, wacky landings and surreal moments, such as when lead character Fin “from inside of a shark, parachutes from space and then saws himself out of the scorched fish.” Wouldn’t want to miss that. This divide between rising social engagement and shrinking audiences, might spell the end, or at least a big change, for the Sharknado franchise as we know it.

The second was an inside joke big enough for a whole Twitter trend—the riffing on the first felt like an organic play on the kind of sequel fatigue that now pervades Hollywood.

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