Disney Cable Networks Set Friday Movie Nights

The Walt Disney Co. is planning a Friday Night Movie franchise on its cable networks while viewers are home and unable to do many things, including going to theaters.

The film series starts Friday night and runs through May 1 and includes ESPN, Freeform and FX. Among the films featured are Guardians of the Galaxy, Iron Man 2, Back to the Future and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

Target is sponsoring the movies, which will run with limited commercial interruptions. The ads that do run will feature commentary, trivia and newly recorded interviews with ESPN personalities including Louis Riddick and MIke Golic Sr.

Related: Seacrest to Host ‘Disney Family Singalong’ on ABC April 16

“We know many families are looking for different ways to spend time together in the comfort of their own homes,” said Rick Gomez, Target executive VP and chief marketing, digital and strategy officer. “Target is proud to partner with Disney to offer Friday Night Movie, giving families another option as they stay home and stay safe.”

Disney Advertising Sales’ CreativeWorks ad unit, developed spots, including one running during You Don’t Know Bo on ESPN using videos of ESPN talent, who were filmed in their homes reflecting on Bo Jackson’s career and legacy.

On Freeform, there will be PSAs and custom content featuring talent from Freeform shows encouraging togetherness while staying at home.

“Disney is committed to continuously providing families entertainment especially during these unprecedented times,” said Wendell Scott, senior VP, Disney Advertising Sales. “Together with Target, we’re meeting families where they are in their homes and delivering fun and exciting movies with a limited commercial experience.”

NBCUniversal on Friday also announced that its cable networks and Telemundo will be airing Stay-In Theater family movie nights. That series is also sponsored by Target with limited commercial interruptions.

On Tuesday, CBS said it would be reviving its Sunday Night Movie during May.

The Disney networks’ Friday movie schedule is:

Friday, April 10

Freeform: Back to the Future

ESPN2: You Don’t Know Bo

Friday, April 17

Freeform: Guardians of the Galaxy

ESPN2: The Book of Manning

FX: Transformers: The Last Knight

Sunday, April 19

FX: Jumanji Welcome to the Jungle

Friday, April 24

Freeform: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

ESPN2: Believeland

Friday, May 1

Freeform: The Intern

ESPN: Secretariat

FX: Iron Man 2

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.