Hallmark Channel is Crown Media Family Networks’ flagship 24-hour cable television network, distributed nationwide in high definition (HD) and standard definition (SD) to 89 million homes. As the country’s leading destination for quality family entertainment, Hallmark Channel delivers on the 100-year legacy of the Hallmark brand. Additionally, Hallmark Channel is the exclusive home to world premiere presentations of the acclaimed Hallmark Hall of Fame franchise. Hallmark Cards, Inc. owns and operates Crown Media Family Networks.
Hallmark Movies & Mysteries returns to its mystery roots this weekend courtesy of a brand-new franchise -- Chronicle Mysteries. Created and executive produced by and starring Hallmark favorite Alison Sweeney (pictured above), Chronicles follows the investigative adventures of Alex McPherson, a true-crime podcaster hot on the case of the disappearance of her childhood friend Gina DeSavio some 20 years ago. Believing Gina could still be alive, Alex enlists the aid of local newspaper editor Drew Goddard (Benjamin Ayres, pictured below), and as the duo dig deeper the scope of the mysterious disappearance widens more than either could have ever imagined. Sweeney, who took a two-year on-screen break to devise and film the first three movies in the franchise (to air over three consecutive weekends), is delighted for fans to finally see the first installment -- Chronicle Mysteries: Recovered. “I’m so proud of these movies,” Sweeney beamed during an exclusive interview with MediaVillage. “Hallmark was thrilled and loved the idea of the Alex character, and the world that I had developed. In fact, I pitched them one movie and they said, ‘How about three?’ I was like, ‘Oh gosh!’ We went from one to three, which was pretty intense, yet an awesome and crazy experience.
Crown Media Family Networks, parent company to Hallmark Channel, Hallmark Movies & Mysteries and Hallmark Drama, received an early Christmas gift this year with the news in November that its foray into the SVOD world, Hallmark Movies Now, had surpassed 500K subscribers. Since that time, the holiday cheer continued, with even more growth on Hallmark’s three networks courtesy of their hugely popular seasonal-themed programming events and a significant boost among SVOD subscribers, now surpassing 600K. “A big thing that makes it successful for us, and something we've seen on the linear platforms and with this service, is that it’s not just the content itself, it's the environment that we create around it,” Chad Harris, Senior Vice President of New Media and Innovation at Crown Media Family Networks told MediaVillage in a recent interview. “It's very specific,” he continued. “It’s something we hear from fans over and over again. It’s a place they can escape to, have an uplifting experience and come out feeling better about the world. We attribute a lot of that success [to the fact that] we all need it.”
One of Hallmark Channel's biggest claims to fame is its annual Countdown to Christmas programming franchise, which consistently catapults the channel to be the top-rated and most-watched network on cable during Q4. In addition to creating a festive holiday celebration on air, Crown Media Family Networks invites media buyers, planners and clients along with their families to enjoy one of the season's most iconic and beloved events: the company's annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade viewing party from Columbus Circle. This intimate gathering gives attendees one of New York City's best vantage points of the parade route, while also allowing them to experience the Hallmark Channel holiday brand up close and personal. Executive Vice President, Ad Sales and Digital Media for Crown Media Ed Georger (pictured at bottom, second from right) described the value -- and joy -- of celebrating the season and success with clients.