Virgin Media Television launches its New Season Schedule with more entertainment, drama, true crime and top sport action than ever before

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  • The biggest Irish entertainment show of the year, ‘The Big Deal’, launches on 4th September with a star-studded line-up including Boy George, Vogue Williams, Jedward, JLS’s Aston Merrygold, Deirdre O’Kane and Lyra in this brand-new entertainment format.
  • World-class new Irish drama takes centre stage this season on Virgin Media Television. Crime thriller ‘Redemption’, filmed in Dublin and starring ‘The Hunger Games’ Paula Malcomson, is one of the most ambitious Irish dramas of recent years. While filming has just begun in West Cork on a drama based on Graham Norton’s best-selling book, ‘Holding’, with both projects co-productions between VMTV and ITV.
  • Acclaimed series, ‘The Guards: Inside The K’ returns, alongside a host of brand new documentaries including ‘OnlyFans: Ireland’s X-Rated’, which looks at some of the Irish people making huge money on the controversial site and ‘The Murder Files: The Killing of Jason Corbett’ examines the vicious killing of the Limerick dad of two, including never-seen-before police tapes and crime scene footage. Along with new series ‘Ireland’s Unidentified Bodies’ and ‘Crime Does Pay: 25 Years of CAB’ and documentaries on ‘Anti-social Ireland’ and Gerry ‘The Monk’ Hutch.
  • The ‘UEFA Champions League’ and ‘UEFA Europa League’ are back on Virgin Media Television – the home of premier sport – as well as the ‘Guinness Six Nations’ Men’s, Women’s and Under 20s tournaments. Top horse racing including the ‘Cheltenham’ and ‘Aintree’ Festivals and Virgin Media Sport Stories continue with in-depth discussions with some of the country’s top sporting personalities, kicking off with a two-part interview with Irish football legend Paul McGrath. 
  • Following on from its most successful season ever, ‘Gogglebox Ireland’ is back for a brand-new series, as is all new ‘Living with Lucy’, and the heart-warming new Irish format ‘Generation Dating’ gets its first series commission.
  • And if you are missing your ‘Love Island’ fix, Virgin Media Player will continue to offer the best free content to box set and binge watch anytime, anywhere, with the full series drop of brand-new ‘Love Island USA’, along with new series of ‘The Real Housewives’, ‘Drag Race UK’, a host of unmissable drama box sets and coming soon our brand new ‘True Crime and Investigations rail’ – exclusively on Virgin Media Player.

Date: Thursday 26th August 2021: Virgin Media Television (VMTV) today announced details of its most ambitious new season schedule yet, linking up with international partners to bring viewers more entertainment, drama, factual and sport than ever before.

VMTV continues to go from strength to strength from trusted News and Current Affairs, and the best of home-grown drama, chat and entertainment to top tier free-to-air sport, the best international TV shows and Ireland’s best in class free streaming service, the Virgin Media Player.

Bill Malone, Virgin Media Television Director of Content said:

“2021 has been a record year for Virgin Media Television, with audience share for adults +12% and +11% for 15-34 year olds, while our free Player continues to deliver record streams of c.33 million year to date.

“And today we announce our most ambitious new season schedule yet. We have teamed up with international partners to put more money on screen, to give audiences the biggest entertainment, drama and sports offering ever.

“The Six Nations and Champions League are back, along with the biggest entertainment shows and dramas we have ever undertaken, from The Big Deal in association with FOX alternative Entertainment and BiggerStage, to our new thriller, Redemption.

“All our hit shows are returning, including Gogglebox Ireland, The Guards: Inside The K, Living With Lucy, I’m A Celebrity and a whole lot more, while the Virgin Media Player will continue to offer the best free content to box set and binge watch.”

Programming Highlights

Viewers will get more drama and entertainment this autumn as the biggest Irish entertainment show of the year, ‘The Big Deal’, lands on Virgin Media One on Saturday 4th September at 8pm. In partnership with FOX Alternative Entertainment and BiggerStage, Boy George, Jedward, JLS’s Aston Merrygold, Deirdre O’Kane and Lyra judge with host Vogue Williams, to find Ireland’s next biggest talent on a scale this country has never seen before. With a cash price of €50,000, this brand-new entertainment show format is one not to be missed.

VTMV will continue its commitment to bring viewers world-class Irish drama production with new thriller ‘Redemption’, co-produced with ITV, in association with Screen Ireland featuring Paula Malcomson (The Hunger Games), Siobhan McSweeney (Derry Girls) and Moe Dunford (Vikings). This dark crime drama tells the story of DI Colette Cunningham who learns that her estranged daughter Kate has died by suicide. With her life turned upside down, Colette resolves to stay in Ireland to work for the Garda.  But what will she unearth about the events leading up to Kate’s death, and the life that her daughter chose to build for herself. A significant boost for the Irish production sector, ‘Redemption’, was filmed in Dublin this year with support from the BAI Sound & Vision Fund.

And filming has just begun in West Cork on another brand new, major Irish drama series, based on Graham Norton’s best-selling novel, ‘Holding’. A co-production between ITV Studios and Virgin Media Television, in association with Screen Ireland, it boasts an impressive cast including Oscar-winner Brenda Fricker and Conleth Hill (Game of Thrones).

The nation’s top couch TV critics are back with some new and returning households for all new ‘Gogglebox Ireland’, launching on 1st September and Ireland’s favourite, Lucy Kennedy, is back for another series of ‘Living with Lucy’ as she heads off to share space, life and conversation with a host of celebrities in their own homes including former English professional footballer Paul Gascoigne aka Gazza.

The heart-warming and unique dating series ‘Generation Dating’ gets its first series commission. After 16 months of living in an isolated world with COVID, we pair up a batch of lonely Irish singletons in their twenties with the over 65’s in a generational quest to manage each other’s dating choices and ultimately find love.

As we wave goodbye to our favourite Islanders and patiently wait for ‘Love Island: The Reunion’ on Sunday 29th August, Virgin Media Two is launching a brand new not to be missed dating show, ‘Ready to Mingle’, starting on 6th September.

Virgin Media Television will broadcast a host of brand-new documentaries and factual series including the return of the highly acclaimed ‘The Guards: Inside The K’. This new series travels deeper into the worlds of criminals and peace makers, with unprecedented access to the guards in the K, and those fighting crime at its darkest. Series two marks the return of some familiar faces, and brand-new cases, as we witness crime fighting as it happens. Cases include the exploitation of children, targeting those coercing or inviting children into a life of crime, and, as the nation was shocked by the murder of teenager Keane Mulready Woods, we join the guards tackling Ireland’s criminal gangs.

Only Fans: Ireland’s X-Rated’ airs on Virgin Media One on 6th September as we delve into the lives of Irish people on this controversial site. From a former nurse to a 40-year-old mother of three, this fascinating documentary examines this hidden world.

‘Ireland’s Unidentified Bodies’ is a four-part seriesthatfollows the efforts of Gardaí and Forensic Scientists as they try to solve the mysteries of the many Irish bodies without a name. It is unknown exactly how many unidentified remains lie in mortuaries, forensic labs and graveyards across Ireland, and no one knows who they are. And ‘Crash Scene Investigates’ reconstructs and re-tells the stories of fatal Irish road traffic accidents with contributions from bereaved families, first-responders, Garda and forensic investigators.

Virgin Media News documentaries continue with ‘Murder Files: The Killing of Jason Corbett’ examining thevicious killing of the Limerick dad of two by his former nanny, Molly Martens and her father. With never seen before police interviews and crime scene footage, it will air on Virgin Media One on 13th September. ‘Anti-Social Ireland’ investigates the rise in delinquency and anti-social behaviour across the country and ‘Until Death: Domestic Homicide in Ireland’ exploresIreland’s most harrowing cases of domestic homicides.

‘Crime Does Pay: 25 Years of CAB’ is a new series examining the success of CAB and how it has completely changed the way Organised Crime is policed in Ireland and ‘Breakdown: Ireland’s Mental Health Battle’ looks at the growing issue of mental health as Munster Rugby legend Alan Quinlan opens up on the mental health battle that almost cost him his life and talks to other high-profile sports stars on the challenges they’ve faced.

VMTV will remain the home of the biggest sporting events in the calendar with the Men’s ‘Guinness Six Nations’ returning, and we’ll also broadcast the Women’s and Under 20s tournaments for the first time. As well as the return of the UEFA ‘Champions League’, ‘Europa League’ and all new ‘Conference League’, as we bring you all the action.

‘Bellator’ is back in October as well as the ‘European Qualifiers’ continuing in September to November, and if that is not enough sport the ‘National Nations League Finals’ will air live in October.

‘Sports Stories’ returns with another batch of powerful Irish sports documentaries including a two-part interview with Paul McGrath, airing on 30th and 31st of August as Tommy Martin sits down with one of Ireland’s greatest ever footballers for an in-depth interview about his life on and off the pitch. Other Sports Stories include Joe Brolly, Oisin McConville, Nina Carberry, Damien Delaney and Ian McKinley.

Virgin Media Player will offer the best free content to box set and binge watch anytime, anywhere, with the full series drop of brand-new ‘Love Island USA S3’, along with new series of ‘The Real Housewives’ and ‘Drag Race UK’. A brand new ‘True Crime and Investigations’ rail is coming exclusively your way, including ‘The Monk – Gerry Hutch and the Regency’, a player exclusive exploring one of Irelands most notorious criminals. You will also be able to watch ‘The Masked Singer S1’, ‘WAGS LA’ plus lots more, from unmissable drama and documentaries to entertainment, there is something for everyone.

Virgin Media News, Ireland’s national independent television news service will continue to bring viewers the most up- to-date news and current affairs seven days a week.

The best of international drama also features this season with ‘Innocent 2’ returning for a brand-new series and focuses on a scandal that rocked the small Cumbrian town of Keswick in 2015 involving schoolteacher, Sally Wright, who was alleged to be having an affair with her 16-year-old pupil and coastal drama ‘The Bay’ returns for a third series, set once again in Morecambe.

Manhunt II: The Night Stalker’ is a four-part drama about the real-life story of a notorious serial rapist whose 17-year reign of terror left thousands of elderly people in southeast London living in fear. ‘Angela Black’ is a six-part crime drama series starring Joanne Froggatt as a survivor of abuse who believes her husband is planning to kill her and ‘The Holiday’ features a big Irish cast with parts shots in Dublin. The story is based on a wife who discovers that her husband is having an affair with one of her friends but which friend?

Plus, all your favourite soaps and top shows continue including ‘Coronation Street,’ ‘Emmerdale’,I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here’, ‘The Masked Singer’, ‘Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Take Away’, ‘Gordon, Gino and Fred’, ‘The Voice UK’, ‘Dancing On Ice’, ‘Celebrity Who Wants To Be A Millionaire’, ‘The Graham Norton Show’, with brand new entertainment shows such as ‘Sitting On a Fortune’ with Gary Linekerand ‘Moneyball’.

While live music continues to face very significant challenges – ‘Fanning at Whelan’s’ returns for eight episodes of epic performances at this iconic venue. From Pillow Queens to Kodaline, Lyra to Paddy Casey, Dave Fanning brings us a line up not to be missed.

Two short films, ‘Punch Line’ and ‘Water Under The Bridge’, winners of Virgin Media’s search for diverse new drama talent, Virgin Media Discovers, will also feature in our new season of Irish drama in association with Screen Ireland.

Images from the launch are available to download here – https://we.tl/t-TElnfaSU7B

Programming imagery is available to download here – https://we.tl/t-OebMf5wlVo

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