HALLMARK CHANNEL RINGS IN THE HOLIDAYS WITH SIX NEW ORIGINAL MOVIES � MORE THAN EVER BEFORE AND MORE THAN ANY OTHER TV NETWORK
This holiday season, Hallmark Channel will premiere six original movies to air on consecutive Saturday nights between the Thanksgiving and new year holidays � more holiday-themed films than the family-friendly network has ever aired before, and more than any other broadcast or cable network this season.
The six original holiday movies are:
"An Old-Fashioned Thanksgiving" Premieres Saturday, November 22
A widowed mother of four (H�l�ne Joy, "M.V.P.") struggles to keep her family intact and to put food on the table. The oldest daughter, an aspiring writer, sends a letter to her estranged and very wealthy grandmother (Jacqueline Bisset, "Nip/Tuck") urging her assistance, much to her mother's disapproval. When the grandmother arrives, old wounds are opened but eventually healed.
"Moonlight & Mistletoe" Premieres Saturday, November 29
A young woman who left the year-round holiday party of �Santaville' � where her dad reigns as the resident St. Nick � for a life in corporate America, returns to her roots to find that her father's business is in dire straits. What begins as a simple effort to pull her dad out of debt ends up rekindling his daughter's belief in the magic of Christmas.
"The Christmas Choir" Premieres Saturday, December 6
A workaholic accountant is inspired to start a choir at a homeless shelter, allowing him to rediscover the "miracle of music" and learning that everyone deserves a second chance. Based on a true-life story, "The Christmas Choir" stars Jason Gedrick ("Desperate Housewives") and Rhea Perlman ("Cheers").
"The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" Premieres Saturday, December 13
For one working woman, Christmas has become the most frustrating time of the year. When all she's looking forward to is the end of the holidays, the perfect stranger arrives and reminds her what the "Season of Giving" is all about. Stars Henry Winkler ("Happy Days"), Brooke Burns ("Miss Guided") and Warren Christie ("October Road").
"Our First Christmas" Premieres Saturday, December 20
A pair of newlyweds has a hard time getting the children they each bring from their previous marriages to come together and agree on plans for their first Christmas together. With the possibility of splitting the family up for the holidays looming, it may take a little "Christmas Magic" to sort it all out. Stars Julie Warner ("Tommy Boy"), Steven Eckholdt ("Secret Santa"), Dixie Carter ("Designing Women") and John Ratzenberger ("Cheers").
"A Kiss at Midnight" Premieres Saturday, December 27
When an online dating service becomes popular, a personal matchmaker (Faith Ford, "Murphy Brown") finds her business at stake. Contrary to her expectations, the site finds her the perfect mate, and she must admit to herself that love isn't always a business affair. Dyan Cannon ("Kangaroo Jack") and Hal Linden ("Barney Miller") co-star.
All movies air 9-11 p.m., ET/PT.
"Holidays are at the heart of the Hallmark brand � they represent family, celebrations and being together," said David Kenin, Executive Vice President, Programming. "It's no surprise that Hallmark Channel enjoys an increase in viewership during the holiday season. Viewers know they can rely on the network for an array of new and entertaining movies to watch with their entire family."
In 2007, Hallmark Channel premiered four holiday-themed original movies � "A Grandpa for Christmas," "All I Want for Christmas," "The Note" and "Love's Unfolding Dream" � which averaged a 3.0 HH rating and 3.6 million total viewers on consecutive Saturday nights, November 29-December 15. Last holiday season Hallmark Channel originals were the #1 destination for weekend Prime Time programming on all ad-supported cable � higher than all other ad-supported cable networks, including: USA, TNT, ESPN, TBS, Lifetime and ABC Family. In addition, throughout the month of December the network attracted 17.2 million new viewers (Dec. 07 vs. Nov. 07) and continues to rank as the network's highest-ever-rated month.
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 86 million subscribers. The top tier program service is distributed through more than 5,450 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 which plays the greatest family movies of all time, Hallmark Movie Channel, and launched Hallmark Movie Channel HD in April, 2008.