CTV Drama Channel announces new branded movie strategy, as 20+ films are commissioned from Harlequin Studios to kickstart new channel brand

TORONTO – Harlequin’s enormously popular novels are coming to the small screen. CTV announced today an innovative brand and content agreement with Harlequin Studios, the newly established production shingle owned by Harlequin. The first-of-its-kind-deal will see CTV commission more than 20 made-for-television films, drawing on content from Harlequin’s bestselling catalogue of more than 30,000 titles, for its newly rebranded CTV Drama Channel. The initial commitment represents more than 40 hours of new Canadian content for CTV Drama.

As revealed at today’s #CTVUpfront, the movies are set to debut as part of the just -announced CTV Drama Channel lineup in a Harlequin-branded program block, allowing viewers to experience Harlequin romance and mysteries in a whole new way. A global success story, Harlequin is known for bringing enjoyment to women around the world through uplifting, entertaining content.

“Harlequin movies are an ideal match for CTV Drama Channel, a service which super-serves female 18-54 viewers with content led by powerhouse series including KILLING EVE and THE HANDMAID’S TALE,” said Mike Cosentino, President, Content and Programming, Bell Media. “Our partnership with Harlequin not only fuels our viewer’s desires for rich storytelling, but also illustrates our commitment to invest in programming that sets CTV Drama apart from the competition.”

“Harlequin is proud to align with CTV Drama for the launch of Harlequin Studios under the leadership of EVP Brent Lewis. We’re excited by the opportunity to bring our authors’ incredible stories to film, and entertain new viewers and existing Harlequin fans,” said Craig Swinwood, Harlequin’s Publisher & CEO.

The first title has a planned Canadian premiere in Q4 2019 on CTV Drama as well as Bell Media’s VRAK French-language specialty channel. Production on Harlequin Movies will take place in Canada and abroad with more new titles debuting in 2020 and beyond. Additional production details will be announced in the coming months.

About CTV
CTV is Canada’s #1 private broadcaster. Featuring a wide range of quality news, sports, information, and entertainment programming, CTV has been Canada’s most-watched television network for the past 18 years in a row. CTV is a division of Bell Media, Canada’s premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio, digital, and Out-of-Home. Bell Media is owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada’s largest communications company. More information about CTV can be found on the network’s website at CTV.ca.

About Harlequin
Harlequin (Harlequin.com) is a leading publisher of commercial fiction and narrative nonfiction. The company publishes more than 110 titles a month, in both print and digital formats, in as many as 150+ international markets and 30+ languages. Encompassing highly recognizable imprints that span a broad number of genres, the publisher is home to many award-winning New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling authors. Harlequin is a division of HarperCollins Publishers, the second-largest consumer book publisher in the world with operations in 18 countries, and a subsidiary of News Corp (Nasdaq: NWS, NWSA; ASX: NWS, NWSLV). For more information, please visit Harlequin.com and Facebook.com/HarlequinBooks. Follow Harlequin on Twitter: @HarlequinBooks and Instagram: @HarlequinBooks.

About CTV Drama Channel
CTV Drama Channel delivers addictive stories, from cutting-edge series to crowd-pleasing whodunits and riveting unscripted moments. CTV Drama is a division of Bell Media, which is part of BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada’s largest communications company.