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Turner Classic Movies (April 14, 1994-present) is a long-running, commercial free cable-TV channel dedicated to airing classic movies, most of them from the Turner Entertainment and MGM, United Artists, RKO, Warner Bros and Janus film libraries. TCM daily airs many familiar classics (mostly released before 1980 and often pre-1970), along with tons of foreign films and obscure rarities that would otherwise never be able to see the light of day--including stuff that nobody would think about, like trailers and even two-reel live-action comedies. The network shows no outside commercials, although between (never during) films they will show old trailers of films or short commercials for the network's merchandise.

The network won a 2008 Peabody Award for their dedication to broadcasting and restoring classic and foreign films.

TCM is one of the last film networks that have knowledgeable on-air personalities introduce a film before its airing. Film historian Robert Osborne, who has been with the channel since its beginning, is the most famous of the two — he does introductions and outros for the films that air prime time every day (and a new one each time a film is shown, too, as TCM's prime time schedule often features a loose theme). Film critic Ben Mankiewicz is the other. He presents a handful of films that air during the daytime and on the weekends (although his aren't new for every episode).

You can find its Web site here.


Tropes:

  • Guest Host: In 2011 Robert Osborne took a five-month sabbatical following a surgical operation, leading TCM to employ a number of guest hosts in his absence.
    • The Essentials, a weekly presentation of a selected film which airs Saturday evenings, has featured a celebrity guest host (or cohost) since it debuted in 2001. Hosts have included Rob Reiner, Peter Bogdanovich, Sydney Pollack, Molly Haskell, Carrie Fisher, Rose McGowan, Alec Baldwin, and (as of 2012) Drew Barrymore.
    • TCM also has an occasional "guest programmer" feature, in which a special guest (usually, though not always, a celebrity) chooses a lineup of films for a given night and pairs with Osborne to introduce them.
  • Letterbox: They sometimes show an educational short explaining to non-cinephiles how aspect ratios work and why letterboxing is a good idea.
  • Marathon Running: They love this. Marathons of films by certain directors or from a specific time period or genre are particularly frequent, including an all-day Akira Kurosawa marathon on what would have been his 100th birthday in 2010.
    • They also have an annual "31 Days of Oscar", showcasing Academy Award-winning films for a month leading up to that year's ceremony.
  • Really Dead Montage: The channel airs a "TCM Remembers" tribute each December, showing the various film personalities (from both sides of the camera) who have died in the preceding year.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: Hoo, boy. During the three-minute or so spots for an upcoming movie they're going to air, they practically show you enough scenes that you could put together a decently accurate article about it on The Other Wiki without even seeing the movie itself.
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