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FilmFour to go FTA

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Copied from http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/article/ds28928.html

Channel 4 has confirmed that premium movie service FilmFour will become a free-to-air service from July.


move will coincide with the channel's launch on Freeview and will takes

its reach from 300,000 homes - subscribers currently pay £7 a month for

the service - to a potential 18 million.

Unlike E4, which is

largely FTA but remains a pay TV channel on satellite, FilmFour will be

available to all Sky and Freesat viewers.

"Channel 4 has a

pedigree in film that is second to none amongst British broadcasters –

we’ve not only showcased the best films on Channel 4 and FilmFour,

we’ve actually funded and produced many of them as well," said Andy

Duncan, C4 chief exec.

"E4 has shown the ratings gains that can

be made by going free-to-air and I’m convinced that a highly distinct

and desirable brand like FilmFour can also make an impact on a wider


The new FilmFour channel will typically screen six

films a day between the transmission hours of 3pm and 3am. The station

pledges to offer a "broader range of films than any other UK channel",

screening classic films in the day, Hollywood fare and US/UK

independent cinema in peak and foreign language and cult at night.

Advert breaks during films will also be introduced for the first time.


FilmFour Weekly channel will be closed but FilmFour's timeshift channel

will remain on cable and satellite. Plans are also underway to launch a

VOD service on broadband, mobile and cable later in the year.


change will significantly extend our presence in multi-channel homes in

advance of digital switchover," added Duncan. "It will also strengthen

our public service contribution by offering regular showcases for

British and European movies, including films financed by Channel 4

itself through its £10m annual production fund.

“Our plans to

launch FilmFour On Demand, available on broadband platforms, will

enhance viewer choice further and complement the free-to-air offering.

FilmFour has always been about great films you know and great films you

don’t – now all those great films will be absolutely free.”

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Thanks for that Clair, very interesting.

I'll try not to get too excited though.  They were singing the same song for the launch of More4, right up to and including the launch date "free to air and available on freeview and Sky" ahem!   Of course, More4 is not available free to air on Sky, and the publicity announcements made by Channel 4 had to be swiftly changed.  Caused quite a little stink at the time.

So, as far as Film Four free to air on Sky goes, I'll hope for the best but not hold my breath.


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