NEW YORK — The teenage progeny of some of Disney's favorite villains proved to be a winning idea for a film, as the Disney Channel's "Descendants" easily became the most-watched cable movie of the year.
The Nielsen company said 6.6 million people watched the movie in its Friday night premiere.
Television being what it is today, that's only a portion of who watched. Another 6.2 million people watched reruns of "Descendants" on either Saturday morning or Sunday night, Nielsen said. Disney said more than one million people saw the movie during the five days before it premiered on TV through the network's app. And the numbers don't include viewers who saved the movie on their DVR, which Nielsen didn't immediately have available.
The offspring of characters like Maleficent, Cruella de Ville and Jafar were featured in the flick, tormenting the children of heroic Disney characters.
Disney has not committed to a sequel, but the door is wide open. The last scene of the movie featured a voiceover that said the story is not over.
CBS won the week in prime time, averaging 5.1 million viewers. NBC had 4.9 million, ABC had 3.9 million, Univision had 2.1 million, Fox had 2 million, Telemundo had 1.4 million, ION Television had 1.2 million and the CW had 1.1 million.
Disney was the week's most popular cable network, averaging 2.41 million viewers in prime time. TNT had 1.8 million, Fox News Channel had 1.63 million, USA had 1.6 million and TBS had 1.59 million.
NBC's "Nightly News" topped the evening newscasts with an average of 7.8 million viewers. ABC's "World News" was second with 7.6 million and the "CBS Evening News" had 6.1 million viewers.
For the week of July 27-Aug. 2, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships: "America's Got Talent," NBC, 10.33 million; "60 Minutes," CBS, 8.46 million; "The Bachelorette," ABC, 8.13 million; "NCIS," CBS, 8.01 million; "The Bachelorette: After the Rose," ABC, 7.94 million; "Best of America's Got Talent," NBC, 7.85 million; "The Big Bang Theory," CBS, 7.16 million; "Zoo," CBS, 7.09 million; Movie: "Descendants," Disney, 6.55 million; "Big Brother" (Thursday), CBS, 6.38 million.
ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Co. CBS is owned by CBS Corp. CW is a joint venture of Warner Bros. Entertainment and CBS Corp. Fox is owned by 21st Century Fox. NBC and Telemundo are owned by Comcast Corp. ION Television is owned by ION Media Networks.