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Sky rebrands Sky1 as Sky Showcase, adds new channel Sky Max

NBCUniversal-owned Sky in the UK is rebranding its flagship Sky1 channel as Sky Showcase and launching a new service called Sky Max.

Zai Bennett

The oldest non-terrestrial TV channel in the UK, Sky1 started out as Satellite Television in 1982 before being renamed Sky Channel in 1984 and Sky1 in 1989.

Rebranded as Sky Showcase, the network will remain a linear-only channel and will air a selection of the top shows from across Sky’s portfolio of entertainment brands, plus selected highlights from Sky Cinema and Sky Sports.

At launch, Sky Showcase will air original drama Wolfe, documentaries such as Hawking and The Bambers: Murder at the Farm, original nature series like Shark with Steve Backshall and US shows like Young Rock and SWAT.

In addition, Sky Witness, Sky Documentaries, Sky Crime, Sky Nature, Sky Arts, Sky Comedy, Sky History, Sky Kids, SyFy and E! are to be joined by a new brand, Sky Max, which will take the form of a linear channel and on-demand service, becoming the new home of Sky’s blockbuster entertainment.

Programmes will include original dramas A Discovery of Witches and COBRA, plus original comedy entertainment such as panel shows A League of Their Own and the return of Never Mind the Buzzcocks.

Elsewhere, Sky Comedy will now become the home of Sky original comedies such as Code 404 and Hitmen Reloaded, which were previously on Sky1, alongside US comedies such as The Office US, PEN15 and Miracle Workers.

Sky Atlantic will remain the exclusive home of premium original dramas such as Landscapers, I Hate Suzie, Gangs of London and Chernobyl, as well as dramas from US channels HBO and Showtime. The changes will come into effect from September 1.

Zai Bennett, MD of content for Sky UK and the Republic of Ireland, said: “In this golden age of television, the sheer volume of incredible programming can be overwhelming. Over the last 12 months, we’ve been making it easier for people to find what they want to watch.

“From September, those looking for the very best of Sky will find it at the top of their programme guide on Sky Showcase, while Sky Max will become the new home of blockbuster entertainment, joining the host of genre-led channels launched in the past year.

“So whether you’re in the mood for true crime, a documentary or just a laugh, there’s always a channel to suit. And if you’re not sure what to watch, Sky Showcase will curate some of the highlights from our line-up so you can find something new to watch.”


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