Smithsonian Channel is crossing the pond. The factual channel is set to launch in the UK on Tuesday February 12th and will be available in HD on Virgin (Channel 295), Sky (Channel 195) and Freesat (Channel 175).
The channel, which is inspired by the Smithsonian Institution and is a partnership with Showtime, is well known for its non-fiction output and is the youngest channel to have won an Emmy. The UK launch marks the latest international rollout following launches in Canada, Singapore and Latin America.
“Smithsonian Channel has already resonated powerfully with audiences in Canada, Singapore and Latin America, so we can’t wait to bring our award-winning and varied slate of programming to the UK audience,” said Tom Hayden, President of Smithsonian Networks.
Original UK commissions for the launch slate includes: When Tariq Ali Met Malcolm X, about a friendship between two controversial firebrands – British Marxist and anti-Vietnam war protestor Tariq Ali and America’s black power advocate Malcolm X; and Mystic Britain, which reveals the secrets of Britain’s most mysterious sites and is hosted by Clive Anderson and Mary-Ann Ochota,
Additionally, later in 2019 Smithsonian Channel will air a new series fronted by the American-born Julie Montagu, Viscountess Hinchingbrooke; and will feature programming marking key events such as the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. Other series set to air on the channel include America In Color, The Lost Tapes, The Green Book: Guide To Freedom, and Aerial America.
“We have a long track-record of working with UK production companies, and over the years our programs have been featured by leading UK broadcasters,” said David Royle, Chief Programming Officer, Smithsonian Networks. “Now we’ll be bringing a lot of exciting new programmes to the UK, along with commissioning new programmes specific to British interests.”