In preparation for the exciting television lineup in 2024, it’s worth taking a look back at some of the innovative storytelling and TV network milestones in 2023. Viewers can look forward to their favorite TV networks to continue to deliver top-notch, compelling, inclusive, and award-winning programming in the new year. Stay tuned!
Disney marked its 100th anniversary in October, with the Disney Channel and Disney Junior standing out as influential forces in shaping the entertainment landscape.
- In 1983, the Disney Channel debuted as a premium cable channel, offering family-oriented programming that featured early classics like "Good Morning, Mickey!" and "Dumbo's Circus, through the late '80s and '90s when pop stars such as Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, and Christina Aguilera rose to fame through the revival of "The Mickey Mouse Club."
- Disney Junior, introduced in 2011, resulted from a strategic decision by Disney to cater specifically to the needs and interests of preschool-aged children.
- Throughout the years, Disney's channels have adapted, expanded, and consistently inspired audiences of all ages, leaving an enduring impact on the world of television.
Warner Bros. Discovery
Warner Bros. Studios turned 100 years old in April, with the company embracing the birthday through its year-long campaign, "Celebrating Every Story."
- The studio's vast library, one of the most prestigious and valuable in the world, consists of more than 145,000 hours of programming, including 2,400 television programs comprised of more than 150,000 individual episodes, and 12,500 feature films.
- The studio is also home to some of the most beloved franchises in the world, including Looney Tunes, Wizarding World, DC, FRIENDS, Game of Thrones, Hanna-Barbera, and more.
- “We are excited about our company's bright and dynamic future and, as we embark on its second century, to continue to tell the kind of great stories that entertain, inform and inspire audiences around the world," said Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav.
Native American Storytelling
Two series set new standards for inclusivity in television by authentically representing Indigenous narratives and cultures.
- FX's "Reservation Dogs" concluded with its third and final season this past fall, making history as the first to feature an entirely Indigenous team of writers and directors. Notably, it was also the first show to be entirely filmed in Oklahoma, a testament to its commitment to authenticity.
- The creators of "Reservation Dogs" undertook a thorough exploration of Native American communities to discover and cast talent for the production.
- AMC Networks' "Dark Winds" aired its second season, and was renewed for a third as the show that's set in the heart of Navajo Nation continues to delve into the intricate tapestry of Indigenous American life.
- The production team of "Dark Winds" consulted extensively with Navajo cultural experts and community members to ensure that Navajo traditions and beliefs depicted were accurate and respectful as the show taps into topics such as land rights and the preservation of cultural heritage.
Delving into History and Government
Exceptional historical-based programming emerged this year that transcended conventional narratives, while C-SPAN's enduring commitment to unbiased government coverage continued.
- The HISTORY Channel premiered its fifth installment of its premium presidential miniseries with "FDR," which used dramatic narrative sequences, insightful expert interviews and contemporary scholarship, dynamic archival footage, and never-before-seen documents to explore how Roosevelt's personal battle with polio prepared him to lead the United States through the Great Depression and World War II.
- For over 40 years, C-SPAN has brought government into American living rooms and offered a wide range of resources for voters to become more engaged with government, free of bias or commentary. NCTA interviewed C-SPAN earlier this year to learn more about the network’s push for more media access of the House and Senate floors.
- National Geographic's 'JFK: ONE DAY IN AMERICA' gave a new take in its docuseries about the 35th president's assassination. The series was granted the unique privilege of colorizing a Dallas museum's news footage archives for the first time. The docuseries also featured key testimony from some of the last surviving witnesses from that day.