[08/15/05 - 12:00 AM]
Tivo Launches Video Download Trial with IFC

[via press release from TiVo]

TiVo Launches Video Download Trial With IFC

IFC to Make Its First-Ever Scripted Series Available for Download by TiVo(R) Series2 Subscribers

ALVISO, Calif., Aug. 15 -- TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO), the creator of and a leader in television services for digital video recorders (DVR), announced today the launch of a video download trial in conjunction with Independent Film Channel (IFC), enabling select TiVo subscribers to download IFC programming over broadband to their TiVo Series2(TM) DVR. The only television services provider for DVRs to seamlessly integrate broadband video downloads and telecast content, TiVo is using this new functionality to begin a series of broadband features that will be deployed to TiVo Series2 users beginning this fall.

The availability of the IFC programming will be promoted to trial participants through a TiVo Showcase. Once a TiVo subscriber chooses to receive the IFC programming, the shows are downloaded via a broadband connection. During the trial, IFC will make its first-ever scripted series, "Hopeless Pictures", "Greg The Bunny", and "The Festival" -- which will premiere August 19 -- available for download by TiVo subscribers in advance of their network telecast premiere. In addition to offering the full episodes of each series, IFC will package exclusive content, including outtakes and other unaired footage, for TiVo subscribers.

Brodie Keast, executive vice president and general manager of TiVo's consumer division, said "The future of television will include an explosion of consumer choice, including programming options from both traditional broadcast and broadband internet channels and sources. TiVo intends to help consumers sort through this complexity, making it easy and fun to find what they want, so they can watch it when and where they want. We're thrilled to work with innovators like IFC to deliver exclusive programming to our subscribers."

Evan Shapiro, executive vice president/general manager of IFC, said the agreement represents an opportunity for IFC to significantly expand its audience reach. "The key element of this trial for us is that it will enable consumers who do not typically have access to IFC to download our three new original series over broadband," Shapiro said. "This will help introduce our programming to an entirely new audience, which we expect will help accelerate our already strong 'traditional' distribution growth by fueling consumer demand for our network. Always looking to innovate and find new ways to deliver our Uncut programming to a broader audience, we are excited about the opportunity to participate with TiVo on this trial of their breakthrough technology."

During the trial, there will also be a sweepstakes on ifctv.com in which visitors to the site can enter a drawing to win a TiVo Series2 DVR with product lifetime service subscription.** One winner will be randomly selected each month from August through October. In addition, IFC will be promoting the sweepstakes and the availability of IFC programming via download on TiVo DVRs in spots airing on IFC from August through October.

"Hopeless Pictures" is written, directed and produced by Bob Balaban with a cast that includes Michael McKean, Jennifer Coolidge, Martin Mull, Balaban and Jonathan Katz, and cameos by: Lisa Kudrow, John Michael Higgins, Isaac Mizrahi, Jerry Stiller, Paul Dooley, Paul Reubens (aka Pee Wee Herman), Nora Ephron, Anne Meara, Paul Weitz and Rob Reiner. In this wicked animated comedy, Mel Wax (McKean) is the head of a dysfunctional Hollywood indie movie studio, Hopeless Pictures, so named after his deceased parents, Hope and Les. Wax struggles to reign in out-of-control, pill-popping Swedish directors and egomaniacal stars, while coping with a vengeful soon-to-be ex-wife (Kudrow), assorted affairs, his idiot nephew/head of production (Balaban), a hostile takeover and an inept psychiatrist, Dr. Stein (Katz). Coolidge plays Hopeless Pictures' head of development, Tracy, as well as actress Nina Boroslova.

"Greg the Bunny" spotlights Greg the Bunny and Warren the Ape as they rebound from the cancellation of their FOX sitcom after just 13 episodes. As they deal with concerns such as overdue rent and funding Warren's drinking habit, they return to where it all began: making film parodies for IFC. From 1999-2000, IFC ran "The Greg the Bunny Hosts," in which Greg and his puppet posse hosted interstitial parodies for Tuesday Night films.

"The Festival" is an ensemble comedy told from the perspective of Cookie, a documentarian hired by IFC. Cookie's subject is Rufus Marquez, a quixotic young director embarking on his virgin voyage to the prestigious Mountain United Film Festival (MUFF) in Sutton. The film is The Unreasonable Truth of Butterflies. The goal is a distribution deal. And the pressure is on. As Rufus attempts to keep afloat in a sea of cell phones and self-importance, disaster deals him a knockout blow ... and another ... and another. Limelight Networks, Inc is providing content delivery network services for the trial.

About TiVo Inc.

Founded in 1997, TiVo (Nasdaq: TIVO), a pioneer in home entertainment, created a brand new category of products with the development of the first digital video recorder (DVR). Today, the company continues to revolutionize the way consumers watch and access home entertainment by making TiVo the focal point of the digital living room, a center for sharing and experiencing television, music, photos and other content. TiVo connects consumers to the digital entertainment they want, where and when they want it. The company is based in Alviso, Calif.

About IFC

The Independent Film Channel is a part of IFC Companies, which has established itself as the future of independent film. With the television network, as well as a film distribution and production unit and a VOD service, IFC Companies has created over the course of the past decade a revolutionary end-to-end business model and brand that focuses on developing and nurturing talent and maximizing the value of independent film. IFC Companies uses its unique cross-platform position to broaden the audience of independent film and to provide independent filmmakers with a strong voice. IFC Companies is a division of Rainbow Media Holdings, LLC.

** No Purchase necessary to enter or win. Go to http://www.tivo.com/ifctv for more information. Sweepstakes subject to complete Official Rules. Sweepstakes begins August 17, 2005 ends on October 31, 2005. For a copy of Official Rules, go to http://www.tivo.com/ifctv or send a self-addressed, stamped envelope (WA and VT residents need not affix return postage) to: The TiVo and IFC "Never Miss Your Favorite IFCTV Shows Sweepstakes" Official Rules, PO BOX 2160, Alviso, CA 95002. Void where prohibited by law. Open to residents of the continental United States, who are 18 years of age or older at the time of entry.

Web Site: http://www.tivo.com http://www.tivo.com/ifctv

  [august 2005]  


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