AMC, A&E Revamp On-Air Looks

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American Movie Classics has developed a new logo and on-air look that the viewing public will soon see, while A&E Network has just started to air some refreshed on-air graphics.

The former will phase in "AMC" as its official name when it debuts its redesign on Oct. 1, when its familiar diamond-shaped logo will give way to a rectangular one.

Concurrently, it will trumpet "TV for Movie People" as its new tagline, replacing "Great Movies. And the Stories Behind Them."

At a press luncheon last Tuesday, AMC Networks president Kate McEnroe and executive vice president and general manager Noreen O'Loughlin said Trollback & Co. of New York had created AMC's identity package — IDs, promotion spots, interstitials, program openers and other on-air materials — that will begin airing after midnight on Sept. 30.

The interstitials feature AMC's first use of real people talking about movies. In one, a man quotes a line from Jaws: "I think we need a bigger boat."

McEnroe said the service's evolution to more contemporary movies was promoted earlier this year in trade ads featuring actors Sidney Poitier and Denzel Washington, with the themeline, "And everything in between."

A related paid, off-channel image campaign — using television, out-of-home ads and print — is in the planning stages and could roll in February or March, O'Loughlin said.

An expanded slate of original documentaries, specials and series, inspired by AMC's migration to more contemporary film fare, will be announced next month by AMC senior vice president of programming and production Rob Sorcher, she added.

The first of this batch includes AMC's Access, due Oct. 4 at 10 p.m. as a half-hour, behind-the-scenes weekly newsmagazine from Access Hollywood's
production team.

In addition, AMC has set The Alien Saga, exploring the Alien
movies, and Bond Girls Are Forever, looking at the evolution of women in the James Bond film franchise, as primetime originals for November.

A&E unveiled a new, shorter opening for the signature series Biography
on Sept. 9, along with new interstitials. It will gradually phase in new openers for its other programs, spokesman Sal Petruzzi said last week.

City Confidential, a Sept. 16 special, also used the new graphics.

Working with A&E senior vice president of consumer marketing Mike Mohamad, Spark and Lee Hunt LLC, members of the Los Angeles-based creative alliance Archipelago, created A&E's new look. The identity package is themed "Voice of a Story" and pegged to "the art of storytelling," said Spark founder Elaine Cantwell.

Many visuals center on people's photos hanging in a photographer's darkroom.

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