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Showtime is a US cable TV network that primarily shows motion pictures as well as some original programming and occasional boxing matches. Showtime went on the air in 1978, largely as competition for HBO. Showtime also was one of the first cable TV networkss to broadcast an HDTV version of its channel, along with Dolby Digital sound.

In the 1990s, Showtime ventured into original programming, inluding such well-received fare as Lolita and Gods and Monsters.

In 2000, Showtime launched the "Showtime Interactive 24.7" channel -- providing DVD-like interaction opportunities to its entertainment offerings.

In the 2000s, Showtime began test marketing a subscription-video-on-demand SVOD system.

As of 2003, Showtime is owned by Showtime Networks Inc., which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Viacom Inc. SNI also owns the networks The Movie Channel and Flix (and their related offshoots), and runs the Sundance Channel, which is jointly owned by SNI, Robert Redford and Universal Studios.

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