James Bond, 007, is returning to terrestrial television this Christmas after a rights agreement with Sky expired and RTE struck a multimillion euro content deal with MGM and Sony.
Sky owner BSkyB bought the television rights to the Bond series in October 2012, setting up a dedicated 007 station on its Sky Movies platform. The deal coincided with the 50th anniversary of the first Bond film, Dr No, and the release of the latest movie, Skyfall.
This meant that viewers, who weren't customers of the pay TV group had to do without their regular fix of the secret agent for the last year.
RTE's latest deal means that it is set to show Quantum of Solace over Christmas, with older Bond movies For Your Eyes Only, The Living Daylights, Licence To Kill and A View To A Kill all set to be broadcast on RTE Two over the season.
Broadcast sources told The Sunday Independent that it could cost between €1.5m to €2m to secure rights to the newer Bond movies owned by Sony, with a cost of €40,000 to €70,000 for each of the older back catalogue.