New York, NY June 1, 2009 – IFC and Sundance Channel announced today that Absolut® Vodka has signed on as an exclusive partner of the networks’ programming events celebrating Gay Pride Month in June. Each June, both networks schedule "Pride Month" stunts, with this year marking the first time the networks have worked with an exclusive partner.
The centerpiece of Absolut® Vodka’s multi-platform relationship is a short-form series, produced exclusively for Absolut by IFC and Sundance Channel, called "I’m Coming Out." The series consists of four one-minute vignettes that highlight the pride, strength and courage behind "coming out" stories, including filmmaker Lee Daniels. The vignettes will air across both IFC and Sundance Channel and will also be available online at IFC.com and Sundancechannel.com. In addition, custom Absolut-branded tags, such as "Closets are for Clothes" will air during the special programming.
"Absolut is a trusted brand that has long supported initiatives in the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender community, and we are proud to make them our very first on-air presenting sponsor of our "Pride Month" programming across both channels," said Kim Gabelmann, SVP, Branded Entertainment and Partnerships. "This partnership also illustrates the ability of IFC and Sundance Channel to do custom, creative integrations that highlight our partners’ brand values."
"For us, pride month is every month, so we’re especially pleased when we are able to partner with such forward-thinking partners as IFC and Sundance to really make Pride a showcase," said Ian Crystal, Brand Director for Absolut Vodka. "Absolut has been a pioneer in the community for many years and we certainly appreciate being able to show our true colors with such great networks."
On Sundance Channel, Absolut presents pride programming throughout the month of June. Beginning June 1 at 9pm, a premiere will air each week during DOC Day. DOC Day is Sundance Channel’s weekly block of documentary films and series airing on Mondays from noon to midnight, including a television premiere at 9pm. Every Saturday night, a double feature showcasing two films with gay pride themes will air beginning at 10pm.
On IFC, Absolut sponsors Friday Night OUT at the Movies, a double feature movie block every Friday in June. Titles include "The Opposite Of Sex," an intelligent, witty and emotionally-charged drama starring Christina Ricci, Lisa Kudrow and Lyle Lovett; and an IFC Original Documentary: Fabulous! The Story of Queer Cinema, which explores the emergence of gay and lesbian cinema from the experimental films of the 40s and 50s to the AIDS-themed films of the 80s, the "New Queer Cinema" of the 90s, and the cutting-edge filmmakers of today
Since 1981, Absolut has been honoring pride and celebrating the achievements of the LGBT community through community-specific advertising, promotions and charitable contributions. Absolut was one of the first consumer brands to embrace the gay community and view its members as important and desirable consumers of its product. Its ads have appeared in gay media since 1981, and the company has long sponsored major gay events.
Operating under the mantra "always, uncut," IFC (The Independent Film Channel) recommends and creates genre-bending content that indulges the alternative culture obsessions of our influential audience and makes it available across multiple platforms: on-air, online and On Demand. In pursuit of what’s new, next and relevant, IFC creates original non-traditional comedies like The Whitest Kids U’ Know and Z Rock and irreverent non-fiction such as The IFC Media Project. IFC’s original programming airs alongside a comprehensive independent film library of award-winning titles and cult classics, as well as content inspired by music, web, gaming, animation, news, culture and more. IFC broadens the audience for independent culture through its exclusive live coverage of notable film and music events like the Independent Spirit Awards and South by Southwest. The network’s On Demand offering, IFC Free, gives audiences the opportunity to watch premieres of IFC’s original series. IFC Media Lab Studios offers financing, professional development and distribution opportunities for aspiring film makers. IFC is a subsidiary of Rainbow Media Holdings LLC.
About Rainbow Media Holdings LLC
Rainbow Media Holdings LLC is a subsidiary of Cablevision Systems Corporation (NYSE: CVC). Rainbow Media is a leading producer of targeted, multiplatform content for global distribution, creating and managing some of the world’s most compelling and dynamic entertainment brands, including AMC, IFC (The Independent Film Channel), WE tv, Sundance Channel, IFC Entertainment and VOOM HD Networks. Through IFC Entertainment, Rainbow Media also owns and manages the following: IFC Films, a leading U.S. distributor of independent and foreign film with a unique day and date distribution model, "IFC In Theaters," that makes films available to a national audience by releasing them simultaneously in theaters as well as on cable’s On Demand platform; IFC Festival Direct features titles acquired from major international film festivals and initially offers them exclusively through On Demand; IFC Productions, a feature film production company; and IFC Center, a state-of-the-art cinema in the heart of NYC’s Greenwich Village. Rainbow Media also operates Rainbow Advertising Sales Corporation, an advertising sales company; Rainbow Network Communications, a full- service network programming origination and distribution company; and 11 Penn TV, a company that manages Rainbow Media’s NYC studios and post-production facilities.