CTV Inc. today announced it will broadcast in High Definition, beginning Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2003. With the move, CTV becomes the first national conventional broadcaster in Canada transmitting a feed in High Definition. In August, TSN and Discovery Channel became the first two Canadian specialty channels to broadcast their signals in High Definition.
Beginning Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET, CTV will transmit a new, “CTV East” signal (CFTO-TV Toronto) in High Definition to be carried nationally on DTH carrier Bell ExpressVu (Channel 630 CTVHE) and on cable through Rogers Cable (Channel 287). Additionally, CTV is in discussions with other distributors across Canada. The “CTV East” feed will be identical to the CFTO analogue signal in terms of programming, presenting HD content when available and digitally up-converted content for all other programming.
Wednesday night’s High Definition debut will feature The West Wing in HD at 9 p.m. ET followed immediately by Law & Order in HD. Other CTV programs that are available in HD include Cold Case, ER, I’m With Her, Joan of Arcadia, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, and Third Watch, representing more HD hours than any other broadcaster per week. In addition to this HD line-up, CTV is committed to developing and broadcasting a growing roster of HD content, including Canadian programming.
“This is the first step for CTV to roll out HDTV across Canada,” said CTV Inc. President Rick Brace. “CTV is committed to High Definition. We believe it represents the future of broadcasting and we intend to be at the forefront of the transition from the analogue model.”