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MGM, Weigel Broadcasting Debut New Digital Multicast Channel

Metro Goldwyn Mayer Studios has teamed up with Chicago based station group Weigel Broadcasting to launch THIS TV network, a new ad-supported 24/7 linear digital channel for U.S. broadcasters.

Expected to launch Oct. 1 on Weigel properties in Chicago, Milwaukee, Wis. and South Bend, Ind., the new turnkey channel targets broadcasters seeking to add new secondary digital channels to their DTV lineup. Programming will be culled from MGM’s extensive library of more than 4,100 films and 10,000 hours of classic TV shows. In addition to partnering with MGM, Weigel will also enlist children’s entertainment producer Cookie Jar Entertainment to handle all of the children’s programming on THIS TV.

Weigel Executive Vice President Neal Sabin will oversee programming for THIS TV. Sabin helped launch Weigel’s other multicast programming services, “The U” on Weigel’s Chicago station WCIU, as well as “Me-TV” and “Me-Too” classic TV formats on WCIU’s analog and digital sub-channels.

“It’s exciting to launch a solid digital channel that has credibility and viability and the product backing of MGM,” said John Bryan, executive vice president, broadcast strategy for MGM. “THIS TV will provide stations with instant variety of quality programming to fit their digital needs. Our station partners can simply sign up, and start enjoying the new opportunities in the digital space.”