Astral Launches Channels on Videotron's illico web Online Service

Pay-TV networks Super Ecran, The Movie Network, Mpix and HBO Canada available on Videotron's new online platform as of June 16, along with programming from Astral's specialty and kids channels

MONTREAL and TORONTO, June 16 /CNW/ - Astral Media Inc. (TSX: ACM.A/ACM.B) today announced that programming from its pay-television channels - Super Ecran, The Movie Network, Mpix and HBO Canada - will be available on illico web, Videotron's new online platform, as of June 16, 2010. illico web is a streaming service that is available free of charge to all Videotron digital television subscribers with a Videotron Internet connection. Subscribers to Astral's aforementioned pay-television services on the digital platform will have access to these services on the illico web platform for no additional cost, thus offering more choice in where, when and how this premium content can be enjoyed.

In addition to programming from Astral's pay-television services, programming from Astral's specialty networks - Series+, Historia, Canal Vie, Canal D, Ztélé, MusiquePlus and MusiMax - and Astral's kids services - VRAK.TV, Family Channel and Playhouse Disney Channel - will be available on illico web.

Making its programming available online is the latest in a string of innovative services offered by Astral which also offers subscribers on-demand services, HD channels and multiplexes - all geared towards bringing value and enabling subscribers to watch what they want, when they want, how they want and where they want.

"The launch of Astral's channel programming on Videotron's illico web service reflects how audiences are consuming content and will provide a legal and secure option for viewing premium movies, series and documentaries from the convenience of a computer," said Johanne Saint-Laurent, Senior Vice President, Astral Television. "We are focused on bringing subscribers a unique entertainment proposition that is based on strong value, premium content and best-in-class technology. Illico web is an innovative solution that will enable Astral subscribers to enjoy the exclusive content that is offered by our services on an additional and complementary platform, all at no additional cost."

With a combined offering of more than 125 hours per week, the Astral channels will provide a robust and diverse offering to subscribers. The English pay-tv services will offer such movie titles as The Hangover, Up, and Brüno and series titles such as Showtime's Nurse Jackie and new seasons of HBO series True Blood, Entourage and Hung, among others. Programs offered by Super Ecran will include a wide range of movies including Indiana Jones et le royaume du crâne de cristal, Harry Potter et le Prince de sang-mêlé, Brüno V.F. and Encore 17 ans. The offering from Astral's specialty channels will draw upon the popular and successful blend of series, documentaries, magazine-style programming, music-themed programs and children's programming to offer subscribers variety and choice.

Available at illicoweb.tv, the illico web service offers similar functionality to Subscription Video On Demand (SVOD) services enabling subscribers to rewind, play, pause and review title descriptions. Subscribers will also be able to use illico web to remotely set their PVRs ensuring that they never miss a favourite show.

Astral is one of Canada's largest media companies. It operates more than 100 of the country's most popular pay and specialty television, radio, out-of-home advertising and digital media properties. Astral plays a central role in community life across the country by offering diverse, rich and vibrant programming that meets the tastes and needs of consumers and advertisers. To learn more about Astral, visit astral.com.

SOURCE Astral Media Inc.

For further information: For further information: Deborah Wilson, Vice President, Communications, Astral Television Networks, 416-956-8558, dwilson@astral.com; Dominique Cornellier, Vice-présidente marketing aux affiliés, Astral Télé Réseaux, Chaînes Télé Astral, 514-939-5001 No. 3266, dcornellier@astral.com

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