HBO and Cinemax's efforts seem to put them in direct competition with other Spanish-language broadcasters. But Galavision's Berry said HBO and Cinemax are still not offering enough simulcasted shows to compete with his cable network.
Some officials at Univision, the nation's largest Spanish-language network, cite the example of CBS' simulcasting experiment with the low-rated Latino buddies sitcom, "Trial and Error," as evidence of simulcasting failures by English-language broadcasters.
But Lara said that the experience of independent stations such as KTLA Channel 5 in Los Angeles indicates otherwise. KTLA claims that it has maintained its "News at 10" as the top-rated news in its time slot partly because of simulcasting.
"Do you think it's a coincidence that Galavision and Univision have made major (movie) programming changes since our (September) announcement?" Lara asked.
In February, Univision aired two Academy Award winners for best foreign picture, "Volver a Empezar" ("To Begin Again") and "La Historia Oficial" ("The Official Story") with English subtitles. And Galavision recently expressed its intention to air films by such noted directors as Pedro Almodovar, who garnered an Academy nomination for "Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown" in the best foreign film category.
But Rosita Peru, Univision's vice president of programming, contends that counter-programming wasn't the motive for airing films with English subtitles. Instead, she said, she had wanted to upgrade the network's movie roster ever since the network station group was acquired two years ago by an investor's group headed by Hallmark Cards Inc.
SIMULCASTING IN LOS ANGELES This is a rundown of programs being simulcast by independent Los Angeles television stations. KTLA Channel 5:
Weekdays programs: "Love Boat" at 10 a.m., "Knight Rider" at 5 p.m., "Magnum P.I." at 6 p.m. and "News at 10." Also all news specials, Angels baseball broadcasts and "Mystery Movie" series when available.
KHJ Channel 9:
'A Team," at 6 p.m. weekdays and "Channel 9 News" at 1 p.m, 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. News specials and documentaries when available.
KTTV Channel 11:
"Small Wonder" at 5 p.m. and "Fox News at 10" on weeknights. Also news specials and some Dodger telecasts.