Showtime is a subscription television brand used by a number of channels and platforms around the world, but primarily refers to a group of channels in the United States.


United States

The US Showtime primarily shows motion pictures as well as some original programming and occasional boxing matches. Showtime went on the air on July 1, 1976, in a local U.S. market. In 1978 it expanded to the national market, competing with HBO. Showtime also was one of the first cable TV networks to broadcast an HDTV version of its channel, along with Dolby Digital sound.

Showtime Networks (which at the time included Showtime and The Movie Channel) became a part of Warner AMEX Satellite Entertainment Communications, which was subsequently purchased by Viacom in 1985.

In the 1990s, Showtime ventured into original programming, including such well-received fare as Lolita and Gods and Monsters.

During the 2000s, Showtime launched several additional Showtime channels, such as Showtime Showcase, Showtime Extreme, Showtime Next, Showtime Family and Showtime Women. Showtime Networks also owns the additional channels The Movie Channel and Flix; and manages the Viacom, Robert Redford and NBC Universal joint venture the Sundance Channel. Each offers movies and programs fitting each channel's particular theme. Premeirs of popular movies are usually made on the primary channel.

In 2000, Showtime launched the "Showtime Interactive 24.7" channel -- providing DVD-like interaction opportunities to its entertainment offerings.

In the 2000s, Showtime began test marketing a subscription-video-on-demand SVOD system.

Original programming


Showtime Australia is a group of movie channels in Australia that began in 1995. Their owner Premium Movie Partnership is owned equally by Sony, NBC Universal, Viacom, News Corporation and Liberty Media. This means Viacom has only a small stake in the service.

This group includes:

This group is available on all three major pay-TV platforms in Australia.

Middle East

Showtime or Showtime Arabia (Gulf DTH F.Z. L.L.C., the operating company behind pay TV broadcaster Showtime) as its lovely called to distinguish itself from its U.S. counterpart, is the dominant subscription television service in the Middle East, North Africa, and the Levant territories. It is a joint venture between KIPCO and Viacom, Viacom being a minor partner. The company is incorporated in the Cayman Islands and has its headquarters at Dubai Media City in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Only one channel on the service also includes the Showtime brand, Showtime Sport.

Showtime Arabia offers the latest Hollywood movies, sitcoms, children’s programming, fashion shows and sports coverage. Showtime currently offers four encrypted programming packages (FamilyPlus, SportsPlus, MoviesPlus, TotalPlus) offering 30 premium Western entertainment channels. TotalPlus, Showtime’s most subscribed package, offers all premium channels that includes four movie channels, four sports channels, three news channels, three documentary channels, three music channels, two kids channels and five family entertainment channels. It also includes eight pay-per-view Home Cinema Channels and ten audio channels. The Disney Channel, which is an a-la-carte channel, is also offered in this package.

The Showtime Arabia network package ( is available via DTH satellite NileSat ( 101/102 located at 7.0W.

External links

zh:Showtime pt:Showtime fr:Showtime


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