HALLMARK CHANNEL TAPS TELEVISION LEGEND REGIS PHILBIN TO KICK OFF YEAR-LONG SALUTE TO LOCAL HEROES
Philbin to Serve as Host of On-Air Specials Developed in Partnership with and Produced by Omnicom Media Group's Full Circle Entertainment
Hallmark Channel is set to launch "Hallmark Heroes with Regis Philbin," a new social outreach initiative that will recognize ordinary Americans who make extraordinary contributions to their communities and who change the lives of others. The campaign will utilize the many venues of the powerful Hallmark brand � on-air, online and in stores � and culminate with two emotionally riveting themed on-air specials hosted by Regis Philbin, co-host of "Live with Regis and Kelly."
"The Hallmark brand is the guiding light for strong family values among which is the importance that we as Americans attach to helping the less fortunate among us," said Henry Schleiff, President and CEO, Hallmark Channel. "Not only does this initiative strongly reflect �the very best' of the Hallmark brand but with Regis Philbin, we have the perfect host for these two specials because his legendary humor is exceeded only by his compassion for those whose selfless contributions make them unsung heroes."
"I'm delighted to be involved with Hallmark Channel and this important initiative and to host these specials," said Regis Philbin. "There are so many unsung American heroes who do so much to help others who are less fortunate, and I am not only proud to help them in this way but hope that their stories and these specials on Hallmark Channel will help to inspire others to make their own contributions."
"We are very proud to have been asked by the Hallmark Channel to create this unique television project that will concurrently entertain and inspire viewing audiences across America. As well, our Full Circle team is pleased to be partnered with Regis Philbin who is an icon in the industry," said Robert Riesenberg, President and CEO, Full Circle Entertainment.
Hallmark Channel will launch an on-air and online campaign for "Hallmark Heroes with Regis Philbin" this month encouraging viewers to visit www.hallmarkchannel.com to nominate their favorite local hero � a teacher who tutored underprivileged students for free, or a teenager who saved their babysitting money and sent it to a hurricane Katrina family. Users will be asked to submit an essay and post a photo or video of their hero.
Hallmark Channel is set to produce at least two editions of "Hallmark Heroes with Regis Philbin" which was developed in partnership with Omnicom Media Group's Full Circle Entertainment (FCE) who will produce the specials and related interstitial programming. The first special, spotlighting mothers, fathers, and veterans who have served our country, is scheduled to air in June 2008. The second special will be holiday themed and air in fourth quarter 2008. Leading up to the on-air event, the network will showcase each honoree via 30-second on-air vignettes.
During each "Hallmark Heroes with Regis Philbin" special, four honorees will be awarded a relevant prize that showcases their amazing contribution � an education scholarship for the local teacher that tutored for free and is now eager to further his own education; a new car for a woman that rescued stray animals in her broken down minivan.
To complement the network's on-air and online promotion of "Hallmark Heroes with Regis Philbin," Hallmark Gold Crown� stores will feature tune-in information prior to the premiere of each on-air special and www.hallmark.com will include a link to the channel's website.
Full Circle Entertainment (www.omnicomgroup.com) was launched in February 2004 with the hiring of Robert Riesenberg to develop and produce quality programming that has strong viewer appeal, while providing an ideal environment and marketing platforms for major sponsors. The company's production team is best known for executive producing numerous television series and movies including: The Restaurant, Bound For Glory, House Rules, Meet Mister Mom, Young Americans, He's a Lady, The Winning Season, Miss Lettie and Me, Bojangles as well as creating the highly-regarded movie franchises, Chrysler Showcase Theater, and Johnson & Johnson Spotlight Presentation. Full Circle Entertainment is part of Omnicom Media Group, the media services division of Omnicom Group Inc. (NYSE).
Omnicom Group Inc. is a leading global marketing and corporate communications company. Omnicom's branded agency networks and numerous specialty firms provide advertising, strategic media planning and buying, direct and promotional marketing, public relations and other specialty communications services to over 5,000 clients in more than 100 countries.
Hallmark Channel, owned and operated by Crown Media Holdings, Inc., is a 24-hour basic cable network that provides a diverse slate of high-quality entertainment programming to a national audience of nearly 85 million subscribers. The top tier program service is distributed through more than 5,300 cable systems and communities as well as direct-to-home satellite services across the country. Hallmark Channel consistently ranks among the top 10 ad-supported cable networks in Prime Time and Total Day household ratings and is the nation's leading network in providing quality family programming. Crown Media also operates a second 24-hour linear channel, Hallmark Movie Channel.