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  1. #1
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    Jul 2006
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    HBO Canada coming from Astral/Corus

    It's not HBO, it's HBO Canada.
    A new channel set to deliver a full slate of HBO series, films, comedies and live events is headed north of the border. Beginning Oct. 30, HBO Canada will be available at no extra charge to people who subscribe to The Movie Network or Movie Central.
    The channel is being jointly launched by Astral Media, which runs The Movie Network, and Corus Entertainment, which runs Movie Central.
    Both networks already run a large slate of HBO programs, such as "Entourage," "Californication," and "Flight of the Conchords."
    But Astral president John Riley says the new channel will broadcast comedy series, live specials, sporting events and behind-the-scenes programs previously unseen in Canada.
    They include the shows "Real Time with Bill Maher," "Def Comedy Jam" and "Chris Rock: Kill the Messenger."
    HBO Canada will also show Canadian films and series, including "Durham County" and "Terminal City," which also air on The Movie Network and Movie Central

  2. #2
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    May 2006
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    Check out the press release here.
    Randi Dertzo
    Owner, http://www.channelcanada.com/

  3. #3
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    BTW, looks like HBO Canada will replace MMore. When you read the description of the channel, MMore & MMoreHD are missing:

    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;
    Randi Dertzo
    Owner, http://www.channelcanada.com/

  4. #4
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    Just the beginning of an eventual TMN/MC merger?

    Will this entice SuperChannel to cut a deal with Starz! and/or Showtime?

    Interesting development anyway :)

  5. #5
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    SuperChannel has been cutting alot of deals lately, so who knows!

    I wish HBO Canada was launched back when they had better shows like Sex and the City and The Sopranos. I know they tried to come in but were blocked but it still would have been nice. I guess better late than never.

  6. #6
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    Yeah HBO is slipping these days, I don't have any dramas I watch there since they canned Deadwood and Rome. Definitely nice to see Real Time coming though, that is one show I'll usually watch if I catch it.

    SHO is gaining lots of ground with their top notch series like Weeds, Dexter, etc.

  7. #7
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    Really happy to see Real Time as well, I have always wanted Comedy Network or something like that to pick it up.

    Atleast we get most Showtime series though, TMN has Dexter (Not sure if CTV plans to continue airing this), and Showcase has Weeds (mind you it's 3 months after the Showtime airing, but that's better than nothing)

    A few months ago in a variety article, a Showtime exec called HBO, "HBOver"

  8. #8
    Just the beginning of an eventual TMN/MC merger?
    I am wondering the same thing and I think its long over due. I noticed that today's announcement was a joint one between both TMN & MC as was their Fall preview announcement. If Corus doesn't want to sell MC then why don't they just merge with TMN and have joint ownership over the 'new' service whatever it will be called?! Astral and Corus already jointly own Teletoon so why not the same thing with their movie services? If they do merge hopefully they will apply to the CRTC for a NATIONAL license, enough of this regional crap! This way you will have 2 National movie services competing with one another instead of what you have now.

    Regarding this HBO Canada thing, why not just re-brand the entire thing as HBO instead of just one channel?! I wonder if Showtime Canada is next?! :D

  9. #9
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    Jun 2006
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    I might be enticed if I could subscribe to this channel at a lower cost.

    I rarely watch movies, so when The Sopranos was done, so was I (with TMN). I just couldn't justify the price for one show (although I did enjoy Entourage, too). HBO DVDs are pretty pricey, so I figure it's worth the wait and get the DVDs with all of the extras. I'm now catching up on The Wire that way, but I missed it when it was on these premium channels I was actually paying for!

    I was hoping someone would finally pick up Real Time, but again, I'm not paying a premium price to watch one show.

    I'm not really as stingy as I sound. It's just that I don't like wasting money on something I rarely watch.

    It is reassuring, though, to see the great Canadian tradition is continuing of starting a new channel that has largely the same programming you can find on other channels. :p

  10. #10
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    If TMN and MC were ever to join forces into one network, both of these networks are very profitable, and neither Astral or Corus would sell their network to the other, if anything it would be a merger and they would both own 50% each, as it is with Teletoon.

    But as for HBO Canada, I don't really see what the big deal is about this, they are only re-naming one of their multiplex channels and placing all of their existing HBO content on that channel. There's a few new additions, but for the most part it just looks like a name change. By reading some of the other things people have been saying about this on other forums, you'd think they were actually getting the real HBO. But for the most part, TMN and MC are almost like having HBO anyways, with some exceptions of course.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by TVGord View Post
    It is reassuring, though, to see the great Canadian tradition is continuing of starting a new channel that has largely the same programming you can find on other channels. :p
    Well lets be honest here, this isn't really a new channel. It is a re-branding of an existing channel simply to bring a stronger brand name to the table. This is TMN/MC saying "we are keeping the HBO programming!" so that SuperChannel doesn't scoop them on more stuff. Without SuperChannel in the picture I doubt they'd have done this, why waste the money on franchise fees? :)

    What would be great would be to see this new channel remain almost exclusively full of HBO programming but we all know that for every airing of an HBO show we're going to likely see a rerun of ReGenesis thrown in to fulfill quotas.

    Now for me the big question, will Showtime allow them to air say Dexter on the HBO Canada channel?

    It is quite obvious, at least with MC, that they largely let a computer plan out the schedules across the suite since their whole setup these days is almost entirely automated. They'll have to adjust the scheduler software to keep certain shows from airing on certain suite channels I would imagine.

  12. #12
    Forgot to mention in my earlier post that this 'multiplex' channel will have its own website, here ya go:

    http://www.hbocanada.com

  13. #13
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    Feb 2008
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    HBO Canada coming from Astral/Corus

    What does everybody think?

    I think it's a psychological trick to calm the demand for the U.S. original by rebranding one multiplex channel for each service under the HBO (Canada) moniker.

    Here's what I'd do if I were them (in a quasi-dream world keeping in check the CRTC):

    Rebrand TMN *and* MC as HBO Canada, now available nation-wide (TMN as HBO Canada East and MC as HBO Canada West) and allow HBO content on all their multiplex channels. Also adopt their multiplex niche (HBO Canada, HBO 2 Canada, HBO Family Canada, HBO Signature Canada, etc.; no need for HBO Latino Canada).

    Making TMN as HBO Canada (East) and MC as HBO Canada (West) ALSO means doubling the number of paytv channels all Canadians can get, which would make subscribers happy, but also probably RAISE the price they charge.

    You can't cry foul about not getting a choice, since we only had TMN on the east and MC on the west, anyway... until SuperChannel came. And SC can be that competition if you don't like a national HBO Canada.

    - HBO Canada (East)
    - HBO Canada (West)
    - HBO Canada 2 (East)
    - HBO Canada 2 (West)
    - HBO Signature Canada (East)
    - HBO Singature Canada (West)
    - HBO Family Canada (East)
    - HBO Fmaily Canada (West)
    Last edited by lukebenward; 09-22-2008 at 07:05 PM.

  14. #14
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    I haven't subscribed to TMN in more than a decade, so I don't know if it's changed [the EPG tells me, though what's currently playing], but I like my above scenario because it let's you catch a movie you might like (on the east coast feed) 3 hours later (on the west coast feed). Convenient time-shifting. Does TMN and/or MC now do this?

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by lukebenward View Post
    I haven't subscribed to TMN in more than a decade, so I don't know if it's changed [the EPG tells me, though what's currently playing], but I like my above scenario because it let's you catch a movie you might like (on the east coast feed) 3 hours later (on the west coast feed). Convenient time-shifting. Does TMN and/or MC now do this?
    Last time I subscribed to MC the scheduling sucked. I saw the same movie start 5 minutes apart on two channels in the suite. Bathroom break time shifting? :)

    I don't think your scenario will happen until TMN/MC actually merge into one service. That might never happen though unless SuperChannel becomes an ever bigger threat to their subscriber count.

    HBO Canada is only coming because of SuperChannel, showing that the market does need competition to create some innovation.

    I remember the SuperChannel that existed before it became Movie Central under Corus, they used the same tired old graphics and branding for probably close to 10 years or more.

  16. #16
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    I don't watch movies, and don't intend to pay for the channel just to see one program, Real Time. I hope we can watch it on their website the next day, but I see "This site is not accessible from your location." It seems to think I'm not in Canada.
    Coincidentally, Bill Maher is appearing on a bunch of talk shows next week to promote his film "Religulous", and a November appearance at Massey Hall in Toronto was announced last week.

  17. #17
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    Donovan's Monkey, you and I are in the same boat (want to see RT, not wanting to pay for that one show). I wonder if--now that Real Time is being seen somewhere in Canada--will it be picked up by another Canada broadcaster for later viewing. The Sopranos aired on TMN first, CTV later. This is my hope, anyway. :)

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by lukebenward View Post
    I think it's a psychological trick to calm the demand for the U.S. original by rebranding one multiplex channel for each service under the HBO (Canada) moniker.

    Here's what I'd do if I were them (in a quasi-dream world keeping in check the CRTC):

    Rebrand TMN *and* MC as HBO Canada...
    Why? You're getting all the content of the original. The specific channel will be called HBO. What the hell does the name of the parent network matter? Will seeing an HBO logo on all the channels make viewing all that more enjoyable? Is there something intrinsically wrong with Canadian brands? Does everything HAVE to be an exact copy of what the americans have?

    I honestly don't get it.

  19. #19
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    I hate to say it but I think for some people it does. Really I think the entire reason for this is just so people can stop saying "when will we get HBO in Canada", the HBO name continues to be brought up in articles, they used to bring up MTV, until MTV launched in Canada, and even though it's not even close to the american MTV, it got everyone to stop saying in articles "when is MTV coming to Canada"

    Now there is very little for people to complain about, they get the HBO brand, they get all HBO programming including comedy and sports specials. Not really much to complain about.

  20. #20
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    I'm still wondering how they will handle the boxing since generally any non-PPV boxing airing on HBO has been a PPV event in Canada. Are the Canadian premiums even allowed to air live sporting events? And if so, does this mean that the PPV reruns HBO does a week after the PPV airs will now air on HBO Canada rather than on TSN?

 

 

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