Coloring Book Based On Horror Movies Yanked In UK After Marketing Gaffe
UK retailer Tesco has pulled a horror-movie-themed coloring book from its website after it was mistakenly marketed to children ages 5 to 8. The book, Colour Me Good Arrggghhhh!! includes images from Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho, Clive Barker’s Hellraiser, Steven Spielberg’s Jaws and Adrian Lyne’s Fatal Attraction. According to the BBC, Tesco said the book had been placed in the wrong category when listed on its website by a third-party seller. Author, artist and publisher Mel Elliott said the book is indeed meant for an adult audience of “playful grown-ups.”
Brit TV Dramas Drive ‘Snobbish Pop-Cultural Hierarchy’ In China
British dramas such as Downton Abbey and Sherlock are big hits at home and abroad, but in China they’re also part of what the Wall Street Journal calls “an increasingly snobbish pop-cultural hierarchy.” Described by local media as a “disdain chain,” it works like this: British drama fans look down on folks who prefer U.S. shows, and they in turn look down on Korean soap fans. The lowest of the low in the disdain chain are fans of domestic dramas. The taste for high-end British fare like Downton and Sherlock is a growing phenomenon. Entgroup compiled levels of discussion on different social media sites to find that British dramas are catching on with the wealthy youth and account for upwards of 9% of foreign TV discussion. Also notable, more than half of those who follow British dramas on social media sites have at least a bachelor’s degree, Entgroup found. Hit Brit shows like Downton are expected to have 160M online followers in the next two to three years. Sohu.com, Youku Tudou and Tencent all have dedicated online channels for British dramas and the Journal says the latter two are competing to sign exclusive deals with distributors like BBC Worldwide and Fremantle Media to stream the shows.
Canal Plus Announces Series For Its New Premium Channel
French pay-TV outlet Canal Plus has announced the lineup of series for the premium HD channel it will roll out Sept. 21. Canal Plus Series will air episodes of some U.S. shows days or mere hours after they premiere in the States. It will show about two dozen new series every year, starting with NBC’s Hannibal, Netflix’s Lilyhammer, FX’s The Americans and Channel 4’s Utopia. Other titles include Mad Men, The Big Bang Theory, Scandal, Revenge and Banshee. Binge viewers can enjoy marathons of some shows. Canal Plus Series will be added on to all current subscribers’ packages at no extra cost.
Homegrown Drama ‘Tiny Times’ Outslugs ‘Man Of Steel’ In China
In its first week of local release, Chinese coming-of-age drama Tiny Times outperformed Zak Snyder’s Man Of Steel, according to figures reported by Xinhua.net. The story about four girls from different backgrounds took 273M yuan ($44.5M) at the box office through June 30. Man Of Steel earned $21.6M in the week, which was its second in release. Jet Li starrer Badges Of Fury made $18.7M. Tiny Times is the directorial debut of novelist Guo Jingming and made over $30M in its first three days, putting it on a par with last year’s smash comedy Lost In Thailand.
5.7M British Viewers Tune In For Andy Murray’s Wimbledon Match
Updates and injuries have thinned many big names at the Wimbledon tennis tournament in London, but Scotsman Andy Murray remains in the running. And his fourth-round win over Mikhail Youzhny on Monday maxed out at 5.7M viewers on the BBC. That compares with a 4.1M peak on the comparable Monday atthe All England Club.
German Docu Producer Autentic Launches South African Pay-TV Outlet
Documentary producer/distributor Autentic has enlarged its channel portfolio with the launch of Spark on South Africa’s ODM pay-TV platform. The knowledge channel airs documentaries on a range of subjects including nature, the environment, wildlife, history, travel and adventure. Autentic CEO Patrick Hoerl says the plan is to next expand the channel to territories in Eastern Europe and Asia. Munich-based Autentic already operates several special-interest channels in Africa and Europe, including Spiegel Geschichte and Spiegel TV Wissen in Germany and Austria. The label is a joint venture of Beta Film and Hoerl.
Cineworld Shows 10.4% Box-Office Gain In January-To-June Period
Cineworld Cinemas has reported a 10.4.% increase in box office for the first half of 2013. The company said the hikes were due to a 4.6% jump in average ticket price and an increase in admission levels of 5.5%. The group market share is 27.2%. Cineworld will officially publish its interim results August 15 but said today that growth is expected through the 3rd quarter. Comparisons to 2012 will be favorable given the distraction of both the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations and the London Olympics last year which were a drag on moviegoing. The 4th quater, however, is likely to hit a speed bump compared to 2012 when Skyfall opened in October and went on to become the most successful film of all time at the British box office. Big upcoming releases include Despicable Me 2, Monsters University, The Wolverine, the 2nd installment of The Hobbit, Simon Pegg-starrer The World’s End, and Hunger Games: Catching Fire. In December, UK exhibition market share leader Cineworld said it would acquire the leading indie circuit, Picturehouse, for £47M. The deal was completed at the end of 2012, but is nevertheless being scrutinized by Britain’s competition authorities over concerns the merger could be bad for moviegoers; findings are due in October.