Norway’s national commercial television channel TV2 announced on Tuesday that it’s iconic soap opera, Hotel Cæsar, will be taken off its main channel and moved over to the streaming service Sumo. It marks the looming end of an era, with TV2 justifying the move because of a change in viewers’ habits.
Hotel Cæsar was one of the many innovations introduced to Norwegian television after TV2 won a national concession for commercial broadcasting in the early 1990s. It was something new and daring, and has since run for 18 years, chronicling the drama and intrigue around a family and their hotel.
TV2 stressed that it had purchased 50 new episodes of the long-running drama, but from January 2017 the program will moved over to Sumo. “We see that folks view drama series differently than before,” TV2’s drama chief Cristopher Haug told rival state broadcaster NRK. Now viewers are more apt to watch series at their leisure, instead of in a scheduled time slot, and Haug said the move to streaming could position Hotel Cæsar for more growth.
The actress playing the matriarch of the series, Sossen Krohg, died last month at the age of 92. The show’s ratings have slipped, but Haug noted that more than 3,000 episodes have been produced and interest in the series remained strong.