Sunday, October 27, 2019

Tonight M-Net will be doing Open Time for DStv subscribers to debut its new Trackers drama series on Sunday night in the 8pm movie timeslot.

After more than two decades M-Net (DStv 101) is returning Open Time on Sunday evening when the channel will be opening the channel on 27 October for more than just DStv Premium subscribers to enable sampling of its new drama series, Trackers, to a bigger audience.

On Sunday M-Net - with the premium channel inhabiting the pole channel number position of 101 on DStv decoders and only available on MultiChoice's most expensive subscription tier - will do an Open Time block and be made available to DStv Compact Plus, DStv Compact and DStv Family subscribers as well between 18:00 and 22:10.

M-Net hasn't done Open Time since April 2007 when it ended its long-running, daily 2-hour open window marketing initiative that was used to showcase its premium content to prospective pay-TV subscribers.

Tonight DStv subscribers on lower-tiered packages will get to watch M-Net's local dating reality show, Finding the One at 18:00, its revitalised weekly investigative and current affairs magazine show Carte Blanche at 19:00, followed by the debut of its new 5-episode local drama series, Trackers at 20:00, for 4 hours of availability to millions more DStv subscribers.

For the first time in over 30 years M-Net is also upending its Sunday night schedule - swopping its Sunday 20:00-timeslot dedicated to a new film premiere for the drama series based on the Deon Meyer novel.

"One of the biggest shifts and changes on the M-Net schedule in terms of local content is with Trackers. Because we believe so much in this show we decided to give it the best possible slot on the M-Net schedule which is 8pm on a Sunday night," says Kaye-Ann Williams, the head of local content and independent films for M-Net channels.

"The first episode of Trackers is basically feature-length and will be about 90 minutes long and thereafter we will have 4 more episodes. Trackers is very action-driven, the plot's twists and turns are amazing and we have a great cast as part of Trackers as well."

While M-Net will show Trackers as an international co-production in South Africa and across sub-Saharan African on MultiChoice's DStv satellite pay-TV service, ZDF will show it in Germany while Cinemax gets the remaining worldwide rights for the United States and areas beyond Africa and Germany.

Trackers, produced by Three River Studios in the United Kingdom and Studio 23, will also be available on MultiChoice's subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) service, Showmax.

The rest of the four episodes will have an hourlong duration with the Sunday films starting at 21:00.

"Trackers shines the spotlight on the incredible talent working in the African film and television industry," says Yolisa Phahle, MultiChoice CEO of general entertainment.

"We are immensely proud of this milestone production. It’s one of the biggest ventures in the history of M-Net and we trust that it will be the first of many enticing and authentic stories from our continent to reach global audiences."

"Tonight is a big night for MultiChoice and we would like to share the pilot episode, which has the feel of a movie, with more of our customers."

Trackers, set against Southern African landscapes – from the Karoo to Khayelitsha and Limpopo to the Bo-Kaap - spins a web of intrigue that involves conspiracy, terrorism, corruption, diamonds, rhinos and smugglers with a cast that includes James Gracie, Sandi Schultz,Rolanda Marais, Thapelo Mokoena, Brendan Daniels, Sisanda Henna, Jill Middelkop, Trix Vivier, Jerry Mofokeng, Grace Olifant, Albert Maritz and Ed Stoppard.