EPIX, the premium cable channel owned by Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA and VIA.B), its Paramount Pictures unit, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. (MGM) and Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF) will simulcast MTV2’s live coverage of the new season of Bellator Fighting Championships live in high definition, beginning Saturday, September 10 at 9:00pm ET/PT.

Entering its second year as the cable television home of Bellator, MTV2 will televise all the action for the upcoming 12-week season featuring single elimination welterweight, middleweight, bantamweight, and heavyweight mixed-martial arts tournaments.

Bellator’s 5th season premieres with Bellator 49 from Caesar’s in Atlantic City, N.J., featuring four quarterfinal welterweight tournament bouts. Bellator showcases a unique format of world-class fighting with 12-week, eight-man tournaments featuring some of the most dynamic fighters in the world, including lightweight world champion Eddie Alvarez, middleweight champion Hector Lombard, featherweight champion Joe Warren, welterweight champion Ben Askren, bantamweight champion Zack Makovsky, heavyweight champion Cole Konrad and Women’s 115-pound champion Zoila Frausto.

“EPIX is proud to partner with MTV2 and we look forward to providing mixed martial arts fans with exclusive live coverage of Bellator Fighting Championships,” said Mark Greenberg, president and CEO of EPIX. “Bellator Fighting Championships fits well with our strategy of establishing EPIX as the television home for great live event programming in HD. We are confident that adding mixed martial arts events to our programming will enhance our brand and further build consumer interest in EPIX.”

“This is the perfect time and the perfect channel to introduce Bellator in high-definition,” said Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney. “EPIX has fantastic programming, tremendous reach and I always find a great movie on their channel. I look forward to continuing our relationship with MTV2 and our new partnership with EPIX to bring the magic of HD to Bellator fans nationwide.”

About EPIXEPIX, a joint venture between Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA and VIA.B), its Paramount Pictures unit, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. (MGM) and Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), is a next-generation premium entertainment channel, video-on-demand and online service launched on October 30, 2009. With access to more than 15,000 motion pictures spanning the vast libraries of its partners and other studios, EPIX provides a powerful entertainment experience with more feature films on demand and online and more HD movies than any other service. It is the only premium service providing its entire monthly line-up of new Hollywood titles, classic feature films, original series, music and comedy specials through the linear channel, video-on-demand and online at EpixHD.com, the leading online destination for movies.

EPIX has made the commitment to deliver the industry's most expansive online collection of movies, making more than 3,000 titles available on EpixHD.com. The service is available to over 30 million homes nationwide through distribution partners including Charter Communications, Cox Communications, DISH Network, Mediacom Communications, NCTC, Suddenlink Communications and Verizon FiOS.

For more information about EPIX, go to www.EpixHD.com. Follow EPIX on Twitter @EpixHD and on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/EpixHD.

About Bellator Fighting ChampionshipsBellator Fighting Championships is a Mixed Martial Arts promotional company headquartered in Chicago. Bellator’s founder/CEO, Bjorn Rebney, is an experienced fighting sports and entertainment professional with a deep commitment to the purity and integrity of the sport of MMA and its athletes. Bellator Fighting Championships’ executive team is comprised of top industry professionals in the areas of live event production, television production, fighter relations, venue procurement, sponsorship creation/development, international licensing, marketing, advertising, publicity and commission relations.

About MTV2Available in approximately 80 million homes MTV2 is man's best friend. Since its launch in 1996, the network has reflected the subversive interests and behaviors of young men with a compelling and diverse programming line-up inspired by ordinary guys who do extraordinary things. MTV2 is part of MTV Networks, a unit of Viacom, one of the world’s leading creators of programming and content across all media platforms. For more information, go to  www.mtvpress.com or follow us on Twitter @MTVPress.

Copyright Business Wire 2010