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SBS Is Launching a New Free-to-Air Channel Showing World Movies 24 Hours a Day

It launches on July 1, and will screen more than 700 movies each year.
By Sarah Ward
May 06, 2019
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SBS Is Launching a New Free-to-Air Channel Showing World Movies 24 Hours a Day

It launches on July 1, and will screen more than 700 movies each year.
By Sarah Ward
May 06, 2019
  shares

Back when streaming platforms and digital television were just a futuristic dream, and when every Australian TV network only had one channel, SBS was an Aussie cinephile's go-to source for free international cinema. The public broadcaster has continued to uphold that role over the past decade or so, especially via its online service SBS On Demand. But now it's giving movie buffs what we've always wanted: a new, free-to-air, 24-hour world movies channel.

SBS World Movies will launch on Monday, July 1 on channel 32, playing flicks from around the globe all day, every day. Prepare for quite the movie marathon, as more than 700 films will be broadcast each year. The channel will also become the network's third in HD — a far cry from the days when folks at home would record the station's international movies on grainy VHS tapes to watch again later.

While the full launch slate hasn't been revealed, a selection of recent high-profile titles will be heading SBS World Movies' way, including Yorgos Lanthimos' dark and twisty The Killing of a Sacred Deer with Colin Farrell and Nicole Kidman; moving French drama Amanda, which just screened at this year's Alliance Française French Film Festival; and applauded 2018 festival hit Ash is the Purest White, the latest film by acclaimed auteur Jia Zhangke. Norwegian historical drama The 12th Man, French thriller Just A Breath Away and Belgian Cannes winner Girl round out the just-announced first movies.

The channel will also showcase women in film via a weekly double focusing on female filmmakers and lead actors, highlight favourites from the international film festival circuit, delve into up-and-coming cinema from far-flung corners of the world, and curate seasons around events like Diwali, Lunar New Year, International Women's Day and Mardi Gras.

Along with programming world movies on its existing channels, as well as on SBS On Demand, SBS is no stranger to the dedicated film channel game. For nearly a quarter of a century up until January 2018, World Movies was available via subscription TV services such as Foxtel.

When SBS World Movies joins the network's lineup, it'll sit alongside existing channels SBS, SBS VICELAND, SBS Food and NITV.

SBS World Movies launches on Monday, July 1 on channel 32.

Published on May 06, 2019 by Sarah Ward

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