Max Goldbart, good afternoon insiders. World Cup fever has gripped Deadline Towers and while our U.S. colleagues gobble up their turkey with all the trimmings, we’ve got plenty to round up in the world of international TV and film.
Moving the goalposts
There is always more controversyPeople who believed that the Qatar World Cup scandal would disappear when real action began were wrong. It is hard to keep track of happenings off the pitch during a fast and furious first week of the world’s biggest sporting tournament but the tone was set by a helplessly bizarre tirade from FIFA boss Gianni Infantino Saturday, in which his robust defense of the Gulf state led with a much-mocked “Today I feel Qatari, today I feel Arab, today I feel African, today I feel gay” He equated serious human rights violations with being bullied in his youth for his red hair. Gianni’s peculiar outburst preceded an opening ceremony featuring Morgan Freeman and BTS’ Jung Kook but some weren’t interested. The BBC chose not to show the ceremony online, despite a lengthy critique by Gary Lineker (and a group of pundits) on the main channel. Speaking on a podcast yesterday, Lineker said he was in part driven by the BBC’s failure to speak up more about human rights issues during the previous World Cup, which was held in Russia, addressing critics that have blasted the BBC for coverage “tinged with orientalism,” Our analysis from earlier in the month.
Protests & non-protests: Following an opening game that went almost without incident (Qatar was downed 2-0 by an impressive Ecuador side), all eyes turned to England’s opener with Iran, and anthems and armbands were on the mind. On the day that two prominent Iranian actresses were arrested for colluding and acting against Iran’s authorities, the Iranian footballers resolutely refused to sing the national anthem in protest at the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who died in custody in September. England, meanwhile, volte-faced on captain Harry Kane’s wearing of a One Love armband after FIFA said he would receive a yellow card if he did so. England, as well as the eight One Love nations that wore the armband previously said they were happy to accept a penalty on the pitch.
To pitchMany millions have tuned in to watch some big matches throughout the week. France’s clash with Australia scored a 2022 record for local network TF1, 12M tuned in for the U.S.’ debut draw with Wales (pictured) on Fox and Telemundo and England’s Iran game on Monday lunchtime managed a peak of 8M as soccer-mad city types snuck off to the pub. Interestingly, the U.S. match was watched by 4 million more people than the England one in the UK. And the tournament has already been replete with on-the-pitch surprises, as Japan overcame Germany and Saudi Arabia put in an incredible performance to defeat one of the tournament’s favorites, Argentina, on Tuesday. The next phase of the tournament is now in view. ‘soccerball derby’ The U.S. will take on England tonight at 7 pm GMT (11 am PT). Deadline has plenty more on the pitch and offline.
La Casa De Netflix
Opening doors: Netflix opened the doors to its production hub in Tres Cantos, Madrid earlier this week as it unveiled five new studio spaces on the lot, including the streamer’s first in-house post-production facility. Zac Ntim was there with Spanish journalists and industry professionals and was shown around the sprawling site. The event ended with an onstage Q&A event. During the session, Verónica Fernández, Director of Series for Spain and Portugal, said the new facilities “guarantee” Spain’s creatives will be able to use the “means to continue to tell their stories.” Fernández also confirmed that the streamer is set to reach more than 30 Spanish-language projects across film, series, and non-fiction documentaries by the year’s end.
“Factory of Dreams”: None other than world-famed director Steven Spielberg will receive the Honorary Golden Bear at next year’s 73rd Berlin International Film Festival, it was revealed Tuesday. Introducing the news, Berlinale director duo Mariette Rissenbeek and Carlo Chatrian hailed a man who has “given a new meaning to the ‘cinema’ as the factory of dreams,” The 19-time Oscar nominee for auteur was praised with a lot of praise. His award will be presented to Spielberg at the Berlinale, a long-awaited but not-at all-virtual event, in February. This is just weeks ahead of the release of one his greatest autobiographical works. The Fabelmans Universal Pictures Germany will release the film in German theatres on March 12.
Wake me up before you goa Goa
Just a little IFFI: On to India, our Asia expert Liz Shackleton is navigating the International Film Festival of India with ease. One of Asia’s largest festivals featured a hugely insightful talk from beloved Kung Fu PAnda and The Little Prince Director Mark Osborne spoke about Miyazaki’s creative process and Netflix’s impact on international animation audiences. Osborne even tried to show Miyazaki the Japanese animation master. The Little Prince However “he famously doesn’t see other people’s movies,” Although Miyazaki has been rumored not to be there, “taken a trip in the Sahara Desert to experience something that happens in the book.” You can read more here. Liz took the time to meet with us. Drishyam 2. Ajay Devgn, star of Bollywood’s movie “Badla”, will talk about the film that was shot partly in Indian beaches. Also his views on Hindi-language and the future. Bollywood), his current projects, and more. And Liz even had time to break this agenda setter on Mumbai’s Impact Films planning theatrical releases for some of the biggest movies of the past 12 months, including Brendan Fraser starrer The Whale Cannes Palme d’Or winner Triangle of Sadness and A24’s global breakout You can have everything, everywhere at once.
An announcement for public service
To compete, collaborate: Public broadcasting has never been more threatened than it is today: whether that’s due to audiences migrating to global streamers, fake news and disinformation undermining its values of openness and truth or the economy stretching budgets paper-thin. No wonder then, that every year many of the world’s top PSBs get together at the Public Broadcasters International conference to extoll the virtues of their existence and give each other a pat on the back. Constantly being kicked and judged can be a tiring business but when Jesse caught up with three top dogs of the PSB world – CBC/Radio-Canada’s Catherine Tait, the ABC’s David Anderson and RNZ’s Paul Thompson – he found them full of fighting spirit and hope for the future. In a wide ranging interview, Tait addressed CBC’s spiky license renewal talks, Anderson was quizzed on how he’s changing his commissioning structure and Thompson talked about the merger between his radio broadcaster RNZ and television network TVNZ. If, like us on the Deadline International TV desk, you enjoy all things broadcast policy, you’ll want to read the Q&A in full.
‘The Voice’ Heads Underground
“Light in their souls in the darkest night”: Many stories have emerged of people who are positive, creative and innovative despite adversity. This was nine months after the Ukraine war. The Voice The finale took place in the underground 75 m below ground, at a station that doubled up as a bomb shelter. With the finale delayed for months due to the February invasion by Russia, producers at 1+1 Media organized a sendoff worthy of a gong for every member of the production team, as the format’s final episode beamed from Maidan Nezalezhnosti under Kyiv Square. Maria Kvitka, the folk singer from Ukraine (pictured), was victorious over a number of other performers due to generator-powered lighting. It looked a beautiful evening, summed up by 1+1’s Head of Big Shows Volodymyr Zavadyuk proclaiming: “We tried so that Ukrainians had light in their souls in the darkest night.” As a gesture of solidarity, Ukrainian producers will be jointly awarded the Eurimages Co-Production Award 2022 in the troubled European country.
🌶️ This is the Hottest: Baz Bamigboye’s banger of the week was this mega casting update on Sam Mendes’ play based on Richard Burton, Elizabeth Taylor and John Gielgud’s Broadway Hamlet.
🌶️ An additional one is: House of the Dragon star Emma D’Arcy has dropped out of Anna Politkovskaya biopic Anna, Naomi Battrick was replaced.
🌶️ It’s getting hotter Per Jesse, British author C.J. Tudor’s debut Drift A TV version is planned.
🍿 Box office: China has given a theatrical release to James Cameron’s The Way of Water Avatar per Nancy’s analysis.
📚 Book deal: Paradise, Death indie Red Planet is adapting two more novels by Our House author Louise Candlish.
🤝 More M&AFremantle again took over the majority of Israeli shares Shadow of Truth Silvio Productions is the producer
🏆 Award nominations: BBC One’s Vigil and Netflix’s Sexual Education The International Emmys won a lot of attention.
🏕️ Festivals: Palestinian director Firas Khoury’s politically-charged Alam Cairo Film Festival: Victory
⚖️ BalanceFrench streaming company Salto is reportedly in talks with its partners about a possible sale.
🐦 Chief Twit the latest: Twitter’s Brussels office, which played a key role in relations with the European Union, has shuttered.
🖊️ Signed upAleksey Ageyev (multi-hyphenate producer), joined Artist International Group to become a Partner. Matt Grobar is the one who did this.
🎥 Trail: Nicholas Winding Refn’s Copenhagen Cowboy A trailer was unveiled and the release date for this movie is January 5.
🖼️ The first lookAt My Crime, French auteur François Ozon’s latest movie.
Zac Ntim and Jesse Whittock contributed to this week’s International Insider.