MBC Max's logo as of 2010
|Launched||October 26, 2008|
|Owned by||Middle East Broadcasting Center|
|Picture format||1080i (HDTV)
|Slogan||Love Movies. Love Max.|
|Broadcast area||Middle East and North Africa|
|Headquarters||United Arab Emirates|
|Sister channel(s)||MBC 1
(Persian Gulf & Levant)
|OSN (MENA)||Channel 734 (SD)|
|beIN (MENA)||Channel 67 (SD)|
|MT Box (Morocco)||Channel 86 (SD)|
|YouTube||Watch online (SD)|
MBC Max (branded as MBC MAX) is a free-to-air movie channel that broadcasts non-stop Hollywood films (and sometimes films from other countries) 24/7 and it is an alternative to its sister channel MBC 2.
Considered the second free specialized movie channel in the Arab world, launched by the MBC group, the aim of MBC Max is to broadcast more choices of films, including more MBC premieres and first-time-on-TVs, for MBC's audience in the Middle East and North Africa. However, the films featured on MBC Max seem milder in content than the films featured on MBC 2, although the pre-launch promotion hinted that MBC Max was created for a wider range of film audiences.
The Channel aims to please its young audiences but at the same time to keep the experience enjoyable and exciting for the whole family.
The number of fans on the Channel’s official Facebook page surpassed One million followers in 2013.
MBC Max HD launched on July 1, 2011.
The other channels of the MBC Group have been promoting MBC Max for a little over a month before its official release. A trial broadcast was launched on October 22, 2008, and during that time it simply showed its own promotional TV ad in a loop. The channel was finally officially launched on October 26 at 7:00 pm U.A.E. time. Its first film was Spider-Man.
Differences between MBC 2, MBC 3 and MBC Max
As mentioned earlier, MBC Max shows films with milder content than MBC 2, which means MBC Max may not show horror films and other related genres. The channel does not show any film that contains extreme forms of violence. MBC Max even has slightly more censorship than MBC 2, but mostly with the audio simply to remove the majority of a certain film's bad language, as well as bigger cuts of other censored and sexual scenes.
MBC Max also features MBC 3 prints of animated and family films, always broadcasting in the middle of the afternoon U.A.E. time, as these films feature the same MBC 3-based, higher-level censorship. (This only applies to films that were originally on MBC 3, as the animated and family films that premiered on MBC Max did not feature such censorship, even though many of those films later appeared on MBC 3, unsurprisingly featuring censorship.)
Despite MBC Max's reputation for broadcasting mild films, it does however broadcast certain R-rated films, such as dramas and comedies like Me, Myself & Irene, albeit the audio was heavily edited since the film contained strong language. It is only important that films do not feature extreme visual violence, and sexual themes are mostly censored anyway. This limit, however, is lifted in MBC Max's new dubbed films package.
Additionally, MBC Max broadcasts classical films more often than MBC 2, since the majority of Hollywood films from the 1960s and before are considered mild by today's standards.
Occasionally, MBC Max would broadcast special film packages giving it a greater specialty value than its sister channel MBC 2.
Disney's animated films
Originally once established on MBC 2 for a limited time in 2008, MBC Max, in association with sister channel MBC 3, began a scheduled weekly broadcast of a mix of Disney's and Disney/Pixar's animated films. This was done in response to the great and historic popularity of Disney's animated films among Arab children and adults alike. In the form of a "bonded-broadcast", every week a single, chosen Disney film would be simultaneously broadcast on both MBC Max and MBC 3, whilst being in its original English track and Arabic dub respectively on each channel.
Despite retaining the English language on MBC Max, the film would still feature Arabic subtitles. This package ran for a time after its "Max-debut" in April 2009, but due to positive response, the package returned in October 2009. Originally, since the particular Disney film is being broadcast in the afternoon U.A.E. time, MBC Max had easily established the MBC 3 print of that particular film which features MBC 3's high-level censorship, but apparently the MBC 3-level censorship is non-existent in the current run on MBC Max, possibly after complaints from its older audience for such absurd censorship.
This package is mostly based on MBC 3's staff decisions, as MBC Max would occasionally, but seldom, broadcast Disney's animated films during other times, although this package insures a weekly appearance of an animated Disney film on MBC Max, regardless of any other schedules.
This package is currently closed as of the end of December 2009.
After debuting in October 2009, MBC Max was scheduled to make a weekly broadcast every Thursday, of a selection of highly noted Hollywood films and other acclaimed films that are dubbed rather than subtitled in Arabic. Depending on the nature of the film genre, the dubbing is either in standard Arabic, or features a dialect. Oddly, the selection of dubbed films are the type of films that naturally don't get broadcast on MBC Max due to their extreme violent nature.
Starting from January 9, 2010, MBC Max now features one dubbed film at the usual timings every day of the week, including Fridays, which now features MBC Max's new Bollywood films package. Any film outside of Thursday will retain to comply with MBC Max's standardized content, but they can still also be viewed in their original languages. The currently known Thursday selection of August 2010 includes:
(The regular schedule is to be on hiatus after August 11, due to the expansion of the overall film schedule during the month of Ramadan.)
Around April 2010, with MBC Max's increased library of dubbed films, MBC apparently are now giving more random schedules for films with Arabic dubs, alongside the usual schedules. This is most likely due to the increased popularity and interest in the dubbing of American films.
Despite the fact MBC created this package for the entertainment of watching dubbed Hollywood films, nevertheless they gave their viewers a choice of switching audio tracks if they want to watch these particular films in their original English tracks, as well as adding subtitles for the viewers who can support this feature. It is currently unknown if this package is permanent. It is likely all the dubbing was produced in-house, which would most likely be the reason why MBC retains exclusivity to these dubbed films/audio tracks as they do not appear anywhere else, and it seems apparent the dubbing was primarily performed by Syrian voice-actors.
After debuting on January 15, 2010, MBC Max is scheduled to make a weekly broadcast, every Friday, of a selection of Hindi films. However, these films will be primarily available dubbed in Arabic for MBC Max's majority Arab audience. The currently known selection of August 2010 includes:
(The regular schedule is to be on hiatus after August 11, due to the expansion of the overall film schedule during the month of Ramadan).
This package is partially jointed with MBC Max's dubbed films package. Which means despite the fact MBC created this package for the entertainment of watching dubbed Bollywood films, nevertheless they gave their viewers a choice of switching audio tracks if they want to watch these particular films in their original Hindi tracks, as well as adding subtitles for the viewers who can support this feature.
Beginning from this Ramadan, MBC MAX is playing movies without commercial breaks, although, some movies may have a one-minute break every once in a while.
Logos and Indents
The channel brought a set of new indents in January 2010, focusing on the 3D theme. These new indents were loved by nearly everyone, it made viewers more interested in the programming of the channel. The new set includes action, romance and various themed indents, including next tags, and movie name tags (used between the movie and the commercial breaks, the name of the currently playing movie will be written at the top left of the screen during the movie), and a schedule of what's coming up in the next few hours appear near the logo.
- Official website for MBC Max