TCM (aka. Turner Classic Movies) is a Mallequinan free-to-air television channel featuring classic movies, mostly from the Turner Entertainment and Warner Bros. film libraries, which include many MGM titles.
It was launched in October 3rd, 1997 (as exclusive channel for DIRECTV), when its sister channel, TNT, dropped its classic film programming to become a general entertainment channel. The first movie broadcast on TCM was the 1939 film "Gone with the Wind", the same film that served as the debut broadcast of its sister channel TNT seven years earlier in 1990.
Turner Classic Movies essentially operates as a commercial-free service, with the only advertisements on the network being shown between features – which advertise TCM products, network promotions for upcoming special programs and the original trailers for films that are scheduled to be broadcast on TCM (particularly those that will air during the primetime hours), and featurettes about classic film actors and actresses. In addition to this, extended breaks between features are filled with theatrically released movie trailers and classic short subjects (and newsreels from the Cinemateca Nacional de Malleco, between 1954 to 1977) under the banner name Un extra más.... In 2007, some of the short films featured on TCM were made available for streaming on TCM's website. Partly to allow these interstitials, Turner Classic Movies schedules its feature films either at the top of the hour or at :15, :30 or :45 minutes past the hour, instead of in timeslots of varying five-minute increments.
Occasionally, TCM shows restored versions of films, particularly old silent films with newly commissioned musical soundtracks.