NEW YORK - Epix, the newly-formed premium movie channel, said on Wednesday it has reached an exclusive deal to carry 22 movies from independently-owned Roadside Attractions.

Epix said Roadside will provide the movies, set for theatrical release in 2009, 2010 and 2011, across all the Epix platforms, including its linear channel, subscription on demand and website.

The channel, is a venture owned by Viacom's Paramount film studio along with Lions Gate Entertainment and MGM. Last month it inked a deal with independent moviemaker Samuel Goldwyn Films to distribute 20 of its movies.

The owners hope the premium movie channel will compete with Time Warner Inc's HBO and CBS Corp's Showtime.

The biggest challenge for Epix will be to strike a deal with one of the major cable companies. So far it has a deal with Verizon Communications Inc to carry the channel on its FiOS service.

Epix said it will carry at least three of Roadside's 2009 titles which include From Mexico With Love, The Cove, and Battle for Terra a computer-animated outer-space adventure.