Disney programs with Verizon


NEW YORK -- The Walt Disney Co. on Thursday announced two separate programming initiatives with Verizon.

Disney's ESPN and Qualcomm Inc.'s MediaFLO USA Inc. wireless entertainment service will create a mobile channel dedicated to the network's X Games in early August that will be part of the FLO TV service available through Verizon's V Cast network.

Disney Channel also said that it will premiere "High School Musical 2" on Verizon's FiOS TV VOD platform ahead of its Aug. 17 cable debut.

ESPN will provide eight hours of daily live coverage, behind-the-scenes footage, highlights and commentary from X Games 13, an annual extreme-sports showcase set for Aug. 2-5 in Los Angeles. The channel also is featuring highlights from previous X Games through Wednesday and will replay this year's version from Aug. 6-7.

X Games footage also will be available on V Cast's regular ESPN channel.

"High School Musical 2," the follow-up to the 2006 made-for-TV musical, will be available to FiOS subscribers Aug. 10, ahead of the broadcast premiere. Verizon also will make behind-the-scenes footage from the movie available on its Disney Connection site, and the company will launch a sweepstakes on its VerizonSurround entertainment portal that will bring a castmember of the musical to the winner's school or community.

This is just one of several multiplatform promotions tied to Disney's highly anticipated TV musical. The company has showcased a music video from the sequel and contests on its online network, and Disney is offering shortform programming relating to the musical on Sprint's wireless network.