Canal+ believes in original creation, HD

The 2008-2009 schedules of Canal+ will concentrate on original creations in drama and entertainment, plus the development of new talents and humour, as well as all that makes French pay-TV brand such as with movies, sports and international TV series.

This season the grid cost will be stable at €1.2 million. Canal+ has invested more than €2bn in content for Canal+ and CanalSat for the year.

Boasting of a very good season 2007-2008, regarding ad revenues and the development of Canal+ Le Bouquet, Bertrand Méheut, remarked “the pay-TV model remains a model of the future.”

The president of Canal+ Group, now credited with 10.5 million subscribers, added: “our first asset is our brand. I’m convinced that to satisfy a susbcriber a full-programming offer with a premium content is the good pay-TV model. A movie channel doesn’t sell well, neither just a football channel.”

Without mentioning it, he indirectly referred to Orange’s incursions into television that is based on both movie and soccer rights.

In terms of programming, General Director Rodolphe Belmer added this season that Canal+ would exclusively offer “95% of the French movie production and 90% of the US one”.

Méheut concluded saying that Canal+ has been the first to launch its high definition version on DTT. Started on August 8, HD broadcasts on DTT will offer 32 hours of native HD programming each week, including sports, dramas, series and docs. Canal+ has been supplying viewers with DTT set-tops that can receive HD signals since launch in 2005.

Other French DTT broadcasters, including France Télévisions and Arte will start HD broadcasts in October.