Sparrowhawk Media launches Movies 24

Sparrowhawk Media Group, run by chairman David Elstein, the former chief executive of Five, is launching a free-to-air film channel.

The company, which owns international versions of the Hallmark Channel, including the UK operation, has appointed Dolphin Television as the airtime sales house for the channel, to be called Movies 24.

It will launch on Sky on 1 July, with Dolphin responsible for all spot advertising sales, teleshopping, plus sponsorship and promotions.

Movies 24, which will broadcast 24 hours, will feature made-for-TV films from major studios, independent producers and the Sparrowhawk library.

Meanwhile, Hallmark has also launched a £2m marketing strategy, under new marketing director Vicky Mitchell, who joined the company last month from Homechoice. It kicks off with a campaign to support the UK premiere of new Canadian police drama Blue Murder, with TV advertising and six-sheet posters at 550 sites. It was produced by Bruce Dunlop Associates, with media by BLM.