CTV Drama Channel

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CTV Drama Channel
CTV Drama Channel 2019.svg
Broadcast areaNationwide
HeadquartersToronto, Ontario
Picture format1080i HDTV
(downscaled to letterboxed 480i for the SDTV feed)
OwnerCHUM Limited (1995–2007)
CTVglobemedia (CTV Limited) (2007–2011)
Bell Media (2011–present)
Sister channelsCTV
CTV Comedy Channel
CTV Sci-Fi Channel
CTV Life Channel
CTV News Channel
LaunchedJanuary 1, 1995 (1995-01-01)
Former namesBravo! (1995–2012)
Bravo (2012–2019)
Available on most Canadian cable systemsConsult your local cable provider for channel availability
Bell Satellite TVChannel 620 (SD)
Channel 1734 (HD)
Shaw DirectChannel 523 (SD)
Channels 82 and 582 (HD)
Bell Aliant Fibe TVChannel 203 (SD)
Channel 420 (HD)
Bell Fibe TVChannel 620 (SD)
Channel 1620 (HD)
Bell MTSChannel 123 (SD)
Channel 1123 (HD)
Optik TVChannel 9302 (SD)
Channel 302 (HD)
SaskTelChannel 73 (SD)
Channel 373 (HD)
VMediaChannel 40 (HD)
ZazeenChannel 121 (HD)

CTV Drama Channel (formerly known as Bravo) is a Canadian English language specialty channel owned by Bell Media.

The channel was founded as the Canadian version of the U.S. channel Bravo (which is now owned by NBCUniversal) on January 1, 1995 by Moses Znaimer and its owner CHUM Limited, and originally focused on performing arts, drama, and independent film. As with its U.S. counterpart, the channel has dropped its arts programming but unlike its U.S. counterpart, which shifted to female-targeting reality and lifestyle-oriented series, the Canadian channel adopted a general entertainment format with a focus on drama.

In 2007, Bravo was among the channels acquired by CTVglobemedia after buying the assets of CHUM Limited. The channel was relaunched in 2012 under a new logo and separate branding from its former American counterpart. Seven years later, the channel would rebrand again under its current name on September 12, 2019.


In the 1980s, a precursor to Bravo existed called C Channel. The service was boasted as a national commercial-free pay television channel that focused on arts programming. C Channel launched on February 1, 1983, before it went bankrupt and ceased operations five months later on June 30 of that year due to its inability to attract a sufficient number of subscribers at a price of $16 per month.[1]

Bravo logo used from 1995 to 2012

Over 10 years later, another attempt at an arts-based channel was proposed when CHUM Limited applied to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) for a license to operate Bravo. In June 1994, CHUM's application for Bravo was approved, citing its nature of service as focusing on "performance and drama programming, as well as documentary and discussion".[2]

Bravo was launched on January 1, 1995.[citation needed]

Sale to CTVglobemedia/Bell Media[edit]

Bravo HD logo used from 2011 to 2012.

In July 2006, Bell Globemedia (later called CTVglobemedia) announced that it would purchase CHUM for an estimated CAD$1.7 billion, included in the sale was Bravo[3] The sale was approved by the CRTC on June 8, 2007,[4] and the transaction was completed on June 22, 2007 while the Citytv stations were sold to Rogers Media. After CTVglobemedia's purchase of Bravo, the channel increasingly shifted its focus toward more television and film dramas (such as Criminal Minds), and lessened its focus on arts programming.

On September 10, 2010, BCE Inc. (a minority shareholder in CTVglobemedia) announced that it planned to acquire 100% interest in CTVglobemedia for a total debt and equity transaction cost of $3.2 billion.[5] The deal was approved by the CRTC on March 7, 2011,[6] and was finalized on April 1 of that year, on which CTVglobemedia was rebranded Bell Media.[7] a high definition simulcast feed of Bravo, which broadcasts in the 1080i resolution format, was launched later that year on October 6, 2011.

Bravo's final on air logo, used from 2012 to 2019.

While under Bell Media ownership, Bravo unveiled a new on-air logo and new on-air presentation in 2012, as part of an extensive rebranding of the network.[citation needed]

On June 6, 2013, Bell announced that Bravo would become the company's first network to implement a TV Everywhere service, which would allow subscribers of participating television service providers that carry Bravo to stream video on demand content as well as a live feed of the Bravo channel via the Bravo Go app.[8]

On June 7, 2018, it was announced that Bravo would be re-branded as "CTV Drama", as part of a re-branding of several Bell Media specialty channels under the CTV name.[9] The following year, it was revealed the channel would rebrand as CTV Drama Channel on September 12, 2019. Bell also announced a commitment to order 20 made-for-TV film adaptations of Harlequin novels from Harlequin Studios, which will air on CTV Drama Channel and Vrak.[10]


Presently, CTV Drama Channel airs a mix of cable dramas acquired from networks such as TNT, The CW, USA Network, and Hulu, as well as reruns of Canadian-produced shows to fulfill Canadian content quotas.

In its early years as Bravo, the channel often aired short films by Canadian artists between programs, funded by its foundation Bravo!FACT, which ranged from comedy to drama to opera to jazz to animation. Many of these also aired on Bravo's weekly series Bravo!FACT Presents. Bravo has also produced a limited amount of scripted and non-scripted series and has broadcast many notable specials, including a telecast of Canadian rock band Spirit of the West's Open Heart Symphony concert with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, and three early television films within the Murdoch Mysteries franchise: Except the Dying, Poor Tom Is Cold and Under the Dragon's Tail.

As CTV Drama Channel[edit]

Current programming[edit]

As Bravo[edit]

Final Programming[edit]

Earlier Programming[edit]


  1. ^ Godfrey, Stephen (18 June 1983). "Receiver named for arts network". Globe and Mail. pp. A1–A2.
  2. ^ CRTC Decision 1994-281
  3. ^ Bell Globemedia acquires CHUM Archived 2011-09-27 at the Wayback Machine; Fasken Martineau; 2006-07-12
  4. ^ Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2007-165; CRTC; 2007-06-08
  5. ^ Bell Canada (2010-09-10). "Bell to acquire 100% of Canada's No.1 media company CTV". CNW Group. Retrieved 2010-09-10.
  6. ^ CRTC approves BCE's purchase of CTVglobemedia Archived June 29, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ Bell completes acquisition of CTV, launches Bell Media business unit CNW 2011-04-01
  8. ^ "Bell Media to give subscribers full online access to Bravo". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 6 June 2013.
  9. ^ "Magnum P.I. reboot, new Jann Arden comedy on CTV's fall lineup". Toronto Star. Retrieved 2018-06-07.
  10. ^ "CTV, Harlequin agree telemovie pact". C21media. Retrieved 2019-09-07.
  11. ^ "Bravo! Celebrates Canada's Famous Faces with New Original Series STAR PORTRAITS, Premiering Sept. 12".

External links[edit]