LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Europeans don't care
about sex. Whether it's lusty adultery, underage sex, overage
sex, sex by the beach -- they just don't seem to care.
And that comes as joyous news to Tom Kapinos, creator of
"Californication," the brashly risque new David Duchovny series
Duchovny's character Hank Moody is struggling through a
midlife crisis that manifests itself in oodles of explicit
sexual encounters. And that explains why it's on pay cable
stateside. But in Europe and some other big TV markets, Hank's
hanky-panky has become fair game for free over-the-air
broadcasters who are airing the series without cuts.
Kapinos admits to being a little taken aback by the fact
that the Irish and British are airing the series without
restrictions. He says he is so delighted that nobody seems to
care in the least about the grunting and grinding that he'd
definitely think about moving across the pond to work. "It
never occurred to me before. But wouldn't it be great to have
all that freedom open up. It sounds tremendous," he says.
British terrestrial station Five snapped up the series
early in its sales cycle because it saw "Californication" as a
"smart and sophisticated" show for its viewers. Ireland's TV3
took a similar stance. Viewers in Iceland also get to watch.
Other major broadcasters taking the show on include Australia's
Network Ten, Sweden's TV4, and Denmark's TV2.
"It goes to the point that here in America it's acceptable
to have 20 procedural shows with dead bodies and all sorts of
forensics and murders, but if you deal with sexuality people go
crazy and that's been going on since the dawn of time over
here," Kapinos says.
The international markets probably were the furthest thing
from his mind when he sat down to write the pilot, Kapinos
admits. "I never thought about it. I really had no clue about
how other countries would react. All I wanted really was to
have a writing sample to show people what I was capable of
doing," says Kapinos.
On reflection, Kapinos says that there probably was a
sensitivity to European TV watchers that could have been
lurking in his subconscious.
"I grew up with parents who were big fans of British
television and they introduced me to 'Fawlty Towers.' Now there
was a character (Basil Fawlty played by John Cleese) who was
just so completely unlikable. But you found yourself unable to
dislike him no matter how embarrassing or excruciating the
circumstances that he found himself in."
That sounds not a bit unlike Kapinos' cretin Hank Moody.