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Sky Rebranding 'Sky Movies' to 'Sky Cinema'

15 Jun, 2016 By: Erik Gruenwedel

New platform will offer 4K Ultra HD titles by the end of the year

Looking to combat Netflix and Amazon Prime Video more aggressively, Sky June 15 announced it is rebranding Sky Movies to Sky Cinema beginning July 8. The largest pay-TV operator in the United Kingdom said Sky Cinema would debut a new movie daily, including offering Ultra High-Definition titles by the end of the year. The service currently bows a new title weekly. It boasts a catalog of more than 1,200 movies, which is up 20%.

Titles available on the rebranded service will include Spectre (July 8), Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation (July 9), Steve Jobs (Sept. 18), Bridge of Spies (Sept. 30) and The Danish Girl (Oct. 23). The Jungle Book, Zootopia and Captain America: Civil War are set to debut around Christmas.

Sky Cinema will be the exclusive home of “Star Wars,” in addition to films from the DC Comics and Marvel.

The platform is slated to premiere Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens in August. Sky will bow a “Star Wars” pop-up channel in August and September featuring the franchise’s catalog and related programming. Sky subscribers will also have access to future “Star Wars” movies, including Rogue One (August 2017) and Episode VIII (August 2018).

Sky Movies previously launched pop-up channels “007,” “Harry Potter” and “Aliens.” There will be at least one pop-up channel every month rather than a few times each year. Already in the pipeline for the next six months are “Disney-Pixar,” “Star Trek” and “Superheroes.” 

Sky Cinema will feature original programming, including interviews and documentaries, in addition to coverage of movie events. The service will also be available on the Sky Go TV Everywhere platform — in addition to the Sky Cinema app. Movies will be available for download for offline viewing.

To improve the platform’s HD audio, Sky is incorporating a new internal master format that provides 30% more pixels and four-times the number of color shades of the current HD offered. 

“With Sky Cinema we are giving customers an even closer cinema experience with enhanced picture and sound quality,” Ian Lewis, director of Sky Cinema, Europe, said in a statement.

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