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Disney later invested US million on two transponders of Galaxy 1, a Hughes Communications satellite, and spent US million on programming.

In 1983, Walt Disney Productions announced its launch of the family-oriented cable channel.

As a premium channel, The Disney Channel would air week-long previews four times a year, as well as two free preview weekends periodically (with ads targeted to non-subscribers), in the same manner as other premium channels such as HBO, Cinemax and Showtime.

On December 1, 1986, Disney Channel began broadcasting on a 24-hour-a-day schedule.

In 1996, Anne Sweeney was appointed to oversee The Disney Channel, and the channel began offering a nightly primetime film.

In January 1983, the Disney Channel was formed under the leadership of its first president, Alan Wagner.

The channel specializes in television programming for children through original children's television series and movies, as well as third-party programming.

It is marketed mostly toward young children, with the exception of their weekend prime-time block that is aimed at both children and pre-teens ages 7-12 year olds, and the Disney Junior programming block aimed at little kids ages 3–6 year olds.

The latest version contained many of the classic elements from "theme days" to updated mouseketeer jackets, but the scripted and musical segments were more contemporary.

MMC had a stellar young cast, launching the careers of future stars Christina Aguilera, JC Chasez, Ryan Gosling, Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, Keri Russell and others.