FilmFour makes fourth free from 4
One of the most popular critisisms about free-to-view television is that there is no "decent" film channel, especially on Freeview. But from July there will be.
It was never clear how much of the 25 million that BSkyB, ntl and Telewest collected from 300,000 FilmFour subscribers each year Channel 4 actually received. But now Channel 4 is banking on more direct value from advertising on a free-to-air channel to the 18 million Freeview, Freesat, Sky and cable homes.
From July, FilmFour will run free from 3pm to 3am with films every two hours, with classic films in the afternoon, blockbusters in primetime and cult and foreign films late at night.
Whilst no announcement has been made about More4 and E4 also joining Freesat, with BSkyB no longer required to collect FilmFour subscriptions, Channel 4 will be free to broadcast its whole offering free-to-air on satellite.
"FilmFour has always been about great films you know and great films you don't" said Andy Duncan, Chief Executive of Channel 4, "now all these great films will be absolutely free."