The Wait is Over... HBO Canada Is Here
Astral Media’s The Movie Network and Corus Entertainment’s Movie Central Launch HBO Canada on October 30, 2008
Toronto, Canada – Astral Media’s (ACM.A/ACM.B) The Movie Network (Eastern Canada) and Corus Entertainment’s (CJR.B/CJR) Movie Central (Western Canada) today announced the launch of HBO Canada, a channel that will deliver a full slate of HBO’s award-winning, boundary-pushing, genre-defining series, films, comedies and live events. Launching on Thursday, October 30, 2008, HBO Canada is a multiplex channel that will be offered at no additional charge to customers who subscribe to The Movie Network or Movie Central.
“HBO is one of the most successful and sought-after entertainment brands in the world and we are thrilled to be expanding upon our long-standing relationship to launch this unique new service,” said John Riley, President, Astral Television Networks. “For years, HBO’s dramatic programming has been available on The Movie Network and Movie Central. But even with all of the HBO titles we offered, Canadians still wanted more. They wanted the comedy series, the live specials, the sporting events and the behind-the-scenes content that went into the HBO viewing experience. In launching HBO Canada we will be in a position to offer Canadians this additional content, together with the current signature series that HBO produces, to create an entertainment and value proposition that promises to set a new standard for premium television viewing in Canada.”
With its launch in October, HBO Canada will be home to new and returning marquee series such as True Blood, Entourage, Big Love, Flight of the Conchords and In Treatment, airing day-and-date with HBO in the U.S. The service will also offer more than 200 hours of library titles and first-run HBO original films, comedy specials, documentaries, live concerts and sporting events which were previously unavailable in Canada, including Real Time with Bill Maher, Def Comedy Jam and Chris Rock: Kill the Messenger. Library titles available on HBO Canada include such series as OZ and Da Ali G Show; original movies Gia, The Late Shift and If These Walls Could Talk; acclaimed miniseries From the Earth to the Moon and Angels in America; and comedy specials from the likes of Dane Cook, Tracey Ullman and Ellen Degeneres. HBO Canada will round out its offering with Canadian films and series including The Movie Network and Movie Central’s award-winning original series such as Durham County and Terminal City.
“We are thrilled that HBO Canada is going to be available to our subscribers this fall,” said Paul Robertson, President, Television, Corus Entertainment. “Canadians see great value in HBO’s distinctive brand and compelling programming and we have responded to this with a channel that offers a full complement of HBO programming that meets our audience’s demand for world-class entertainment – delivered in standard definition, high definition and on demand.”
HBO Canada will include a standard definition and high definition offering. HBO Canada programming will also be offered on demand through The Movie Network OnDemand and Movie Central On Demand where available by service provider.
Astral Media and Corus Entertainment have expanded on the long-standing programming output deal that each has with HBO in order to launch HBO Canada. HBO will not hold an ownership stake in HBO Canada.
“Canadian audiences have a great appreciation for the quality entertainment for which HBO is known,” said Charles Schreger, President of Programming Sales, HBO. “Working with Astral Media’s The Movie Network and Corus Entertainment’s Movie Central to create HBO Canada is a great evolution in our relationship and it is very exciting to be able to deliver a robust inventory of HBO programming under an HBO branded destination.”
The Movie Network is a pay television service available in eastern Canada. With premiere access to Hollywood hit movies, critically acclaimed HBO and Showtime series, and first-rate Canadian programming, this pay-television service presents Canadians with some of the best television entertainment available. The Movie Network service includes 24-hour multiplex channels – M, MExcess, MFun!, MFest and the soon-to-be-launched HBO Canada – which deliver diverse and entertaining programs in an uncut and commercial-free television environment. The Movie Network also offers The Movie Network HD and the soon-to-be-launched HBO Canada HD, two dedicated high-definition channels providing hundreds of titles in HD; and The Movie Network OnDemand, a Subscription Video On Demand (SVOD) service, available in select areas across eastern Canada. For more information, please visit www.themovienetwork.ca.
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