8 October 2009
ITV Studios Global Entertainment today confirmed that ESPN Classic, part of the world’s largest sports television network, has acquired more than 150 hours of new programming from ITV Studios, featuring content selected from the ITV Classic Sports archive catalogue.
The ITV Classic Sports portfolio features multi award-winning coverage and events from the world’s most famous and celebrated sporting moments and tournaments. The significant commission will span events from the mid-1960's to the current period, including the best moments from the Football League and FA Cup Football to legendary boxing bouts, including Chris Eubank and Naseem Hamed to classic wrestling, including Big Daddy, Giant Haystacks and Pat ‘Bomber’ Roach.
Jeroen Oerlemans, ESPN, Vice President, TV Channels Europe, Middle East and Africa said: “The ITV Classic Sports archive will help us to continue to deliver top quality archive football, boxing and other sport to a wide audience across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Through this deal we’re delighted to be able to bring ESPN Classic viewers some of the greatest Football League and FA Cup matches played by some of the most iconic football names. The legendary boxing matches in the ITV Classic sports package will be a favourite with big fight fans.”
The deal was brokered by Claire Murphy, Commercial Sports Director at ITV Studios Global Entertainment, who said: “The ITV Studios Global Entertainment portfolio currently features more than 300 hours of programming from virtually every major event covered by the talented teams at ITV Sport. The ESPN Classic deal will bring together the world’s greatest sporting moments in a slate of newly created, highly compelling programmes. The deal is a great example of how we’re monetizing these unique content assets, whilst delighting millions of fans with great content.”
ESPN Classic will premiere the new line-up from Winter 2009 on the networks UK, pan-European and Africa / Middle East Classic channels, reaching more than 20 million homes.
The programming has been produced by ITV Sport’s Rita Costantinou, Manager of ITV Sport Archive and Tony Pastor, Senior Editor at ITV Sport, who said: “It's been wonderful to dig deep into the fabulous ITV Sport Archive and work with material so evocative of our nation's sporting history. The snow covered football pitches of the 1970s, Muhammad Ali charming audiences in Newcastle, these images may be from a by gone age but will hopefully entertain fans new and old."
ITV Sport Archive - Telephone +44 (0)20 7261 3388
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ITV Global Entertainment
Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7157 6186