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Go Behind the Lines When Discovery Wings Channel becomes the Military Channel
Go Behind the Lines When Discovery Wings Channel Becomes the Military Channel on January 10, 2005

 

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Press Release
November 30, 2004

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Network's New Mission Will Offer a Broad Focus on All Aspects of the Military With a Wide Array of Programming About its People, Strategy, Technology and History

Partnerships with the USO, National D-Day Museum, Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation and Military.com Also Announced

Silver Spring, Md.-- Bringing viewers compelling, real-world stories of heroism, military strategy, technological breakthroughs and turning points in history, Discovery Communications, Inc. announced today that it will transition its Discovery Wings Channel to the Military Channel on Monday, January 10, 2005.

While Discovery Wings Channel focused exclusively on aviation, the Military Channel will feature a dramatically broadened programming mission, as well as an all-new on-air look. The network's revamped slate of series and specials is designed to take viewers "behind the lines" to tell the personal stories of servicemen and women and offer in-depth explorations of military technology, battlefield strategy, aviation and history. The Military Channel also provides access to military personnel and hardware, allowing viewers to experience and understand a world full of human drama, courage, innovation and long-held traditions.

"The Military Channel will represent the highest quality programming across a broad spectrum of military related genres that we believe consumers have a keen interest in learning more about," said Judith A. McHale, President and CEO of Discovery Communications. "In an increasingly fragmented marketplace, the Military Channel will broaden Discovery Communications' offerings and further differentiate our portfolio of emerging networks."

"We're very proud to introduce the Military Channel, a network that will apply the Discovery standards of quality, depth and storytelling to a topic of fascination and relevance in our world," said Billy Campbell, President of Discovery Networks U.S. "By covering all aspects of the military and the people who define it, we will extend the Discovery brand, create a service that appeals to our existing viewers and attract new viewers and sponsors."



"Our viewers have a deep interest in military topics and people," said David Karp, Senior Vice President and General Manager of the channel. "Our mission is to tap into this passion by providing a high-quality lens that details contemporary and historical events, explores its human elements and highlights the strategic and technological advances that define the world of the armed forces."

From Iraq and Afghanistan to historic battlefields, wartime heroes and peacetime innovators to state-of-the-art technology and the key strategies that have shaped military tactics the network's programming will cover a wide range of topics. Programming comes from sources all over the world, including Discovery Wings. The following is a sample of the original efforts planned for early 2005:

  • DELTA COMPANY: This multipart series puts the audience on the forefront of the action with the Marines of Delta Company 1st Tank Battalion on their push to Baghdad during Operation Iraqi Freedom. DELTA COMPANY premieres on Monday, January 10, from 9-11 PM (ET/PT).
  • TASK FORCE RED DOG: This world premiere special tells the story of a unit of Marine Corps reservists, called to active duty and sent to the front line of the war on terror, a "forward operating base" deep in the mountains of Afghanistan. Their mission as a quick-response helicopter unit puts them in the epicenter of the hunt for Osama Bin Laden and the Taliban. TASK FORCE RED DOG premieres on Monday, January 10, at 8 PM (ET/PT).
  • TOP TEN: These specials rank the greatest technological achievements in military history, in such categories as Top Ten Fighter Aircraft and Top Ten Tanks. TOP TEN: Fighter Aircraft premieres on Friday, January 28, from 8-9 PM (ET/PT).
  • GOIN' BACK: Iwo Jima: This first installment of a regular series of specials allows viewers to travel with American war veterans and their families as they return to the battlefields that came to define their lives, in this case the Pacific island Iwo Jima. GOIN' BACK premieres on Thursday, February 24, at 9 PM (ET/PT).
  • THE BLUE ANGELS: A YEAR IN THE LIFE: This four-hour world premiere miniseries event covers a year in the life of the Navy's legendary flight group. The special takes viewers behind the scenes to meet the people and follow the intricate work that goes into being the most elite air performance team in the world. THE BLUE ANGELS: A YEAR IN THE LIFE premieres on Thursday, March 17, and Friday, March 18, from 9-11 PM (ET/PT).
  • RED FLAG: This two-hour special offers an unprecedented insider's view of the military's most realistic combat-training exercise held at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada, where air-combat warriors train to fly, fight and win beyond the speed of sound. RED FLAG premieres on Thursday, March 31, at 9 PM (ET/PT).
  • BATTLE PLAN: This multipart series takes viewers into the heart of famous battles, examining the development and execution of the strategy behind each one-from the hard, fast, merciless assault of a blitzkrieg to the tactics of deception of urban warfare. BATTLE PLAN premieres on Tuesday, January 11, at 8 PM (ET/PT).

In addition to its programming efforts, the Military Channel has entered into a number of partnerships with military-related charitable, educational and marketing organizations. It is a World Partner of the USO, the nation's preeminent nonprofit organization serving the needs of the 30 million active-duty personnel, reservists and veterans, through a relationship that entails marketing, educational and programming components. The network is also working with the National D-Day Museum and the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation for educational campaigns, public services announcements, membership outreach and programming. In addition, the network is working with the website Military.com to reach the worldwide U.S. military and veteran communities.

Military Channel programming will begin airing in North America on Monday, January 10, 2005. Its first night of primetime programming will be highlighted by the world television premiere of TASK FORCE RED DOG and the two-hour special DELTA COMPANY.

Discovery Communications, Inc. is the leading global real-world media and entertainment company. DCI has grown from its core property, the Discovery Channel, first launched in the United States in 1985, to current global operations in 160 countries and territories with one billion cumulative subscribers. DCI's 60 networks of distinctive programming represent 19 entertainment brands including TLC, Animal Planet, Travel Channel, Discovery Health Channel, Discovery Kids, Discovery Times Channel, The Science Channel, Military Channel, Discovery Home Channel, Discovery en Espaņol, Discovery HD Theater and FitTV. DCI's other properties consist of Discovery Education, Discovery.com and 120 Discovery Channel retail stores. DCI also distributes BBC America in the United States. DCI's ownership consists of four shareholders: Liberty Media Corporation (NYSE: L), Cox Communications, Inc. (NYSE: COX), Advance/Newhouse Communications and John S. Hendricks, the Company's Founder, Chairman and CEO.

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