Sky Q, Virgin Media and Freesat viewers will gain three new movie channels and a new entertainment channel next week. And best of all, these four channels will be completely free to watch. That means Sky Q and Virgin Media customers won’t see any extra charges on their monthly bills to tune-in and watch (something that will be music to the ears of Sky Q subscribers, who were recently hit with a price hike).
Dubbed the GREAT! entertainment network, these new channels, owned by Narrative Entertainment, will replace Sony Movies, Sony Movies Action, Sony Movies Classic and the Sony Channel. The four new channels will launch in the UK from Tuesday May 25, 2021. From that date, you’ll be able to see these new options appear in the EPG (Electronic Program Guide) on your set-top box. It comes as the channels, as well as Pop-branded channels for children, were acquired by Narrative Entertainment.
“Sony has done a wonderful job of cultivating these channels and they’ve been a wonderful partner in this transition,” Narrative Entertainment chief exec Daniel Levin told Variety. “The programming will be uninterrupted. We’re particularly excited to welcome a brand like Pop into the Narrative family, which is without question a premier destination network for children across the UK, and to give an incredible new look and feel to the movies and entertainment channels.”
So, what’s available to watch?
Well, the four channels are as follows: GREAT! movies, GREAT! movies classic, GREAT! movies action, and finally, GREAT! tv.
The titles are pretty self-explanatory, but in case you’re still wondering what sort of shows and films you’ll be able to watch on these free-to-air channels, we’ve got the full breakdown below. While these channels are completely free to watch, they’re supported by advertising, so you will have to put up with your movies and boxsets being interrupted from time to time with an ad break. Of course, many of the titles you’ll find on these channels are available to buy and rent separately from the Sky Store, Virgin Media Store, or streaming services like Prime Video, Apple TV+ and Rakuten, if you’d rather pay to have an uninterrupted movie night.
GREAT! movies will show a pick ‘n’ mix of Hollywood blockbusters, contemporary indie hits and cult classics. So, expect to see the likes of Blade Runner 2049 starring Ryan Gosling and Harrison Ford, Ridley Scott’s science-fiction Alien prequel Prometheus featuring Michael Fassbender and Charlize Theron. War flick Fury, starring Brad Pitt and Logan Lerman, will also appear on the network.
Meanwhile, GREAT! movies classic, will feature back-to-back classic cinema. Expect to see the likes of Oscar-winning musical adaptation of Charles Dickens’ classic tale, Oliver!, the classic Hitchcock thriller Psycho, and Sidney Poitier and Katharine Hepburn in Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner.
As the name suggests, GREAT! movies action is all about non-stop explosions, car chases, gunfights, and, presumably, Liam Neeson single-handedly fighting his way through an army of nameless henchman. Classic John Wayne westerns and Jean-Claude Van Damme packed 80s thrillers will be on the menu of the third and final movie-centric channel from GREAT! launching next week.
The last new channel, GREAT! tv, is dedicated to series to binge. The team behind the channel says we should expect “the love and excitement of great drama and entertainment with a familiar mix of scripted series, nostalgia and popular gameshows”. You’ll be able to catch the likes of Murder, She Wrote, Charlie’s Angels, Starsky & Hutch, Hart to Hart, and classic Who Wants to Be A Millionaire.
According to a report from Variety, Narrative Entertainment plans to slowly increase the quality of content available on its newly acquired channels. It is widely-tipped to be in the market for “premium” movie purchases to fill its schedules. Fingers crossed these channels only get better over time and we see some exclusive blockbusters, original productions and more coming to these free-to-air channels (similar to what we’ve seen from Roku).
All the GREAT! channels will be available on Freeview, Sky, Virgin Media and Freesat on May 25, 2021.
The news comes as Roku, which recently launched its own free-to-air channel with access to exclusive shows, classic series, and blockbusters, announced a swathe of new content. The Roku Channel is available on Roku-branded set-top boxes, Smart TVs, and Sky Q and NOW TV boxes.
Published at Tue, 18 May 2021 10:45:00 +0000