American Movie Classics open for ad sponsorship roles

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American Movie Classics plans to open up sponsorship opportunities for advertisers.

The cable TV channel currently doesn't run commercials either before or after its movies or other programming, and is not planning on a full load of spots. But President Kate McEnroe said two events have proved to be catalysts in the decision to work with marketers on ad opportunities.

"First, there were those `Smithsonian Moments' [that ran on broadcast TV]. I can see us doing `Hollywood Moments' with a major sponsor," she said. "Then there was Ford's sponsorship of `Schindler's List.' That's the kind of model I see us doing with a film preservation series."

Romance Classics, a spinoff of AMC, will participate in the spring 1998 upfront ad sales market for the first time. It will take its first commercials next year and plans on a full complement of ads.

The Disney Channel, another network that doesn't currently take ads, has also talked about a sponsorship model for marketers.

AMC's first public solicitation for marketing partners will take place at next month's Cabletelevision Advertising Bureau annual meeting in New York.

To shepherd the effort, Nancy Laperla has moved over from marketing to become VP-business development.

Copyright March 1997, Crain Communications Inc.

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