Sundance Channel rises with themed programming

Corus Entertainment's shiny new Sundance Channel debuts next month with themed programming blocks and a national media campaign.

As Corus’s new Sundance Channel readies to rise in March, the broadcaster has announced programming and promotional details.

As MiC reported last month, the new lifestyle and movie channel is launching March 1 and will feature a programming lineup inspired by the indie film fest. The channel’s launch will be promoted with a four-week national and Western regional TV, print, in-cinema and online campaign.

The buy, handled by Media Dimensions, includes online entertainment websites, print ads in free commuter newspapers Metro and 24 Hours, Movie Entertainment and Famous magazines and Sundance programming on Corus specialty channel Encore Avenue 2.

Nationally, there will be Corus Radio spots, as well as promo spots on Corus specialty channels W, Dusk, CMT, YTV, Viva and Cosmo TV and their websites.

On the programming front, the channel’s weekday prime-time will be organized into themed blocks.

On Monday nights, ‘Sundance Stage’ focuses on film adaptations of stage plays and kicks off with the Paul Gross-starring series Slings & Arrows. American Film Theatre follows with The Homecoming, The Maids, Rhinoceros and Luther slated in March.

In The House, featuring Hollywood insiders Peter Bart and Peter Guber, kicks off Tuesday night’s ‘Critics Choice’ block, with the former Variety editor-in-chief Bart and Batman producer Guber offering insights, opinions and interviews with motion picture execs. Acclaimed festival films follow each episode, with initial selections including Tom Gilroy’s TIFF Award-winner Spring Forward and Sundance Film Festival Audience Award winner Brother’s Keeper.

Wednesdays are dedicated to the best of Sundance-produced original productions in ‘Sundance Series,’ while Thursday night’s ‘Sonic Screen’ focuses on aural offerings like Music Makers, 360 Sessions and London Live, showcasing concerts by recording stars Beck, Feist and Kanye West.

Friday nights are reserved for ‘Theatreland,’ which includes a documentary series on the London theatre scene, while Saturday’s ‘Midnight Snack’ airs cult classics in the tradition of Naked Lunch, Return of the Secaucus Seven and Brother From Another Planet.

On Sundays, ‘Asia Extreme’ focuses on innovative Far East filmmakers, with titles like Bloody Reunion, Divergence and Triad Election turning the spotlight on imaginative Asian directors.

And for short-form relief? Isabella Rossellini’s much-lauded Green Porno shorts will inform viewers about animal kingdom mating rituals, specifically insects and sea creatures.