'Titanic' Programming Schedule Planned for Canada's Global Television

9:10 AM PST 03/19/2012 by Etan Vlessing
Samir Hussein/Getty Images

The Canadian broadcaster is to mark the 100th anniversary of the doomed ship's sinking by airing Oscar-winning writer Julian Fellowes' mini-series and a slew of TV specials.

TORONTO – Canadians eyeing a Julian Fellowes period drama fix after Downton Abbey’s second season may have it in the upcoming Titanic mini-series airing over four weeks on the Global Television network.

Rather than simulcast the epic mini-series from Oscar-winner Fellowes, which Shaw Media co-produced, with ABC’s airdates on April 14 and 15, the Canadian broadcaster will air Titanic over four consecutive Wednesdays from March 21.

“Sometimes, despite the (simulcast) opportunity, we do what the Canadian audience wants, and do something distinct from the American networks, because we think it will work better for us,” Barbara Williams, senior vp of content at Shaw Media, said of the rarely-employed pre-release strategy.

Global Television also created a dedicated website for the mini-series so viewers can learn more about the sinking of the doomed ship 100 years ago.

To mark the historic anniversary, the Global Television network is also sending news reporters to Southampton, England and Belfast, Northern Ireland for stories on where the indestructible ship was built and sailed from before eventually sinking off the Newfoundland coast.

And Canadian director James Cameron’s continuing obsession with the downing of the Titanic is also Shaw Media’s gain after it acquired a series of U.S. TV specials, including National Geographic Channel’s Titanic: Final Word with James Cameron, Save the Titanic with Bob Ballard and Titanic: Case Closed for National Geographic Canada.

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