Showtime And Lifetime Television Team Up For The Independent Film, �Speak� In An Unprecedented Simulcast, Monday, September 5th
Starring Kristen Stewart, Elizabeth Perkins, D.B. Sweeney and Steve Zahn, �SPEAK� Premieres Labor Day at 9pm ET/PT
Both Networks To Air Public Service Announcement From RAINN (Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network) Directly Following The Film
LOS ANGELES: July 16, 2005 � In an unprecedented television event, Showtime and Lifetime Television will simultaneously air the original film SPEAK, chronicling the experience of a teenage girl traumatized by a date rape and her journey to self-expression and disclosure, it was announced today by Robert Greenblatt, Showtime�s President of Entertainment and Lynn Picard, Executive Vice President/General Manager, Lifetime Television. This partnership marks both Lifetime and Showtime�s first-ever simulcast of an original movie.
A Showtime Independent Film, SPEAK stars Kristen Stewart (�Panic Room�), Robert John Burke, Eric Lively (SHOWTIME�s �THE L WORD�), Elizabeth Perkins (SHOWTIME�s WEEDS, �Finding Nemo,� �Big�), D.B. Sweeney (�Spawn�) and Steve Zahn (�Sahara,� �Happy Texas�) and will premiere on both networks Monday, September 5 at 9:00pm ET/PT.
Directly following the film, both networks will air a Public Service Announcement from RAINN (Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network), the nation�s largest anti�sexual assault organization. The PSA will inform viewers where they can seek help and information from RAINN�s National Sexual Assault Hotline, 1.800.656.HOPE.
�This is an important film about an issue that should be seen by as many women and girls as possible, so we instantly embraced the unprecedented idea of simulcasting SPEAK with Lifetime, a network that speaks to women," said Greenblatt. �We will instantly broaden the reach of this moving and beautifully-acted film which is based on a book that has been read by young people and taught in schools all across the country.�
�This touching and insightful movie fits perfectly with Lifetime and our Emmy Award�-winning commitment to using the power of the media to make a positive difference in women�s lives,� said Picard. �We�re delighted to partner with Showtime in this unique television experience.�
Scott Berkowitz, President, Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network, said "There is no issue more important or more relevant to young women than sexual assault. Showtime and Lifetime deserve great credit for bringing attention to this crime, and for their commitment to educate as well as entertain. Thanks to "Speak," viewers across the U.S. will better understand the long-lasting trauma of this violent crime, and will learn about the free, confidential help they can receive through the National Sexual Assault Hotline."
SPEAK, which debuted at the Sundance Film Festival to rave reviews, also won the prestigious Audience Award at the Woodstock Film Festival. The film is based on the acclaimed novel of the same name by Laurie Halse Anderson. The novel, a New York Times and Publishers Weekly best-seller, is currently woven into the curriculum in schools and colleges nationwide through lesson plans, classroom guides and Anderson�s speaking engagements. Speak was also a National Book Award finalist. At this moment, the book is #11 on Publisher�s Weekly�s Children�s Fiction Bestsellers List.
SPEAK is the tragicomic story of a smart, spirited high school freshman, Melinda Sordino (Kristen Stewart), who has been stunned into silence by an unspeakable event - a rape by an upperclassman at a summer party. Unable to open up to her preoccupied parents (Elizabeth Perkins and D.B. Sweeney) and a social outcast to her peers, Melinda finds solace in her art class under the guidance of her free-spirited teacher, Mr. Freeman (Steve Zahn). Over the course of the school year, she gradually learns that expressing herself is the only way to confront and cope with this shattering experience.
A presentation of Showtime Independent Films, SPEAK is a Fred Berner Films production. Directed by Jessica Sharzer, the screenplay is by Annie Young-Frisbie and Jessica Sharzer from the novel, �Speak,� by Laurie Halse Anderson. SPEAK is produced by Fred Berner (�Pollock,� �Law & Order: Criminal Intent�) and Matthew Myers, with Jerry Offsay serving as executive producer.
SPEAK is rated PG-13 and has advisories for violence, adult language, adult content and rape).
LIFETIME is the leader in women's television and one of the top-rated basic cable television networks. A diverse, multi-media company, LIFETIME is committed to offering the highest quality entertainment and information programming, and advocating a wide range of issues affecting women and their families. Launched in 1984, LIFETIME serves 89 million households nationwide. In 1998, LIFETIME launched Lifetime Movie Network, now in more than 45 million homes, and in 2001, Lifetime Real Women. LIFETIME Television, Lifetime Movie Network, Lifetime Real Women, Lifetime Radio for Women, Lifetime Home Entertainment and Lifetime Online are part of LIFETIME Entertainment Services, a 50/50 joint venture of The Hearst Corporation and The Walt Disney Company.
Showtime Networks Inc. (SNI), which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Viacom Inc., owns the premium television networks SHOWTIME�, THE MOVIE CHANNEL� and FLIX�, as well as the multiplex channels SHOWTIME� TOO�, SHOWTIME� SHOWCASE, SHOWTIME EXTREME�, SHOWTIME BEYOND�, SHOWTIME NEXT�, SHOWTIME WOMEN�, SHOWTIME FAMILYZONE� and TMC xtra. SNI also offers SHOWTIME HD�, THE MOVIE CHANNEL HD�, SHOWTIME ON DEMAND�, THE MOVIE CHANNEL ON DEMAND� and FLIX ON DEMAND. SNI operates and manages the premium television network SUNDANCE CHANNEL�, which is a venture between NBC Universal, Robert Redford, and Showtime Networks Inc. All SNI feeds provide enhanced sound using Dolby Digital 5.1. SNI markets and distributes sports and entertainment events for exhibition to subscribers on a pay-per-view basis through SHOWTIME� PPV. Additionally, the advertiser-supported television network SHOWTIME is available in Turkey through a joint venture with UK-based Zone Vision.