Film 24 (channel)

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Launched 2007
Closed 4 April 2011
Owned by Film24 Limited
Picture format 576i (4:3, SDTV)
Audience share 0.07% (December 2010, BARB)
Replaced by Sony Entertainment Television
(at time of closure)
Sky Channel 157
Eutelsat 28A 11585H 27500 2/3

Film24 was a British television channel, available on Sky channel 157. The company, with offices at Pinewood Studios, produced content for the TV channel as well as programmes for international TV, Internet, and mobile distribution.

Before its sale in 2010, the channel averaged around 800,000 viewers a week. [1]


Film24 was an independent, multi-platform content business, founded by Nicky J Davis and based at Pinewood Film Studios, that produced programmes and short features about the film industry and films themselves to satisfy the ever-growing consumer demand for film consumption and the audience's fascination with the movie business. Content was available via its own website,[2] on mobile via RokTV, IPTV via Joost and as programming blocks on Sky.

Following a trial run on Sky channel 138, with excellent feedback from both viewers and the film industry alike, Film24 secured a permanent home in the Entertainment section of the Sky Electronic Programming Guide by acquiring Sky Channel 158 (Bonanza) and all its assets from Optimistic Entertainment in May 2007 through major shareholder Caparo Ventures.[3]

Film24, the TV channel, finally launched in July 2007 as a channel about film, not airing films, but with original programming covering large and small films and DVD releases, new talent, regional cinema, films in production and behind-the-scenes programmes reporting and explaining every aspect of the film industry.[4]

In Spring 2008, on line community X-taster [5] were commissioned to provide Film24's online offering. Following five failed attempts, numerous delays, and a serious split in Xtasters founding management team, in October 2009, relaunched, making the channel theoretically interactive for web users. The intention had been to launch a video-on-demand service, with a view to showing full-length episodes and films in the UK and Ireland.

In the latter half of 2009, the COO, Andrew Burns, brought in a new programming strategy, focusing on acquiring programmes. This new direction saw an increase in celebrity programming, demonstrating the Hollywood lifestyle and reality television shows. Film24 also showed awards shows, with the Screen Actors Guild Awards and the Independent Spirit Awards airing in 2010. The Screen Actors Guild Awards were transmitted live in the UK.

In September 2009, Film24 commissioned Starstruck Media to relaunch flagship programme Film Xtra. Originally, thirteen 15 minute programmes were agreed, but the programme was soon made into a half hour feature, and continued to look at new cinema releases, home entertainment releases, and news from the world of film.[6] The programme was presented by former CBBC and Top of the Pops presenter, Adrian Dickson. A spin-off series, that was broadcast post the 9 p.m. watershed - FXU, started in January 2010, presented by Tim Fornara.

Also in September, Film24 acquired the rights to computer games shows Playr and Playr Guides.

In December 2009, Film24 announced plans to significantly increase its spend on new programmes.[7]

In April 2010, Film24 announced that it had acquired a brand new Hollywood chat show In The House.[8] The programme will feature major celebrities live in the studio including Morgan Freeman, Kathryn Bigelow, Quentin Tarantino, Sigourney Weaver, Harrison Ford and Jeff Bridges to name but a few.

The announcers on the channel were Trish Bertram,[9] Mike Cooper,[10] and Heather Larcombe.[11]

Film24 Sale[edit]

The channel's principal shareholder was Lord Swaraj Paul's Caparo Group. In May 2010, Angad Paul (CEO of Caparo Group) withdrew promised development funding, without any notice, following serious financial problems at Caparo,[12][13] forcing the channel into financial difficulties.[14][15]

On 22 June 2010, Canis Media announced that it was reviewing options for the potential sale of Film24.[14] The company, which was responsible for channel management and transmission of the Film24 TV channel, said that options included a straight sale of the channel 157 slot on Sky’s EPG, a sale of the channel itself, a joint venture with a new owner, or a rescue package with new investors.[15] Up to a dozen firms confirmed interest.[16]

On 7 September 2010, Canis Media announced that the sale of Film24 is "near to completion" and the new owner would be unveiled shortly.[17] On 28 October 2010, it was reported that Sony Pictures Television were on the brink of a deal to buy Film24 as their first entry into the UK channel market.[18][19]

On 19 November 2010, Sony Pictures Television acquired all the assets of Film24 for an undisclosed sum.[20]


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