May 16, 1997Brent & Siempre in the woodshop.
CSICBS is preparing what it hopes will be the world’s largest ever drama simulcast with a simultaneous 150-country screening of CSI.International broadcasters and channels that have CSI rights will show the same episode of the enduringly popular US procedural, which is distributed by CBS Studios International.The simulcast, which will take place on March 4, will be of the ‘Kitty’ episode of the drama that contained the ‘embedded pilot’ for the latest edition of the franchise, CSI: Cyber.CBS said it was organising ‘CSI Day’ to mark the fifteenth anniversary of the scripted show.The previous record for the largest international simulcast was for the fiftieth episode of BBC sci fi series Doctor Who, with an episode going out to 98 countries across six continents ion November 2013.The episode will go out at 7pm US Eastern time on March 4. In the US, it will be streamed on the CBS website.“When CSI premiered, I had no idea it would become the sensational global franchise it is today,” said Anthony Zuiker, creator of the CSI franchise and co-creator and executive producer of CSI: Cyber. “I can’t think of a better way to kick off CSI: Cyber and celebrate 15 years of international success than with a worldwide simulcast.”
Michael Peters, CEO of Euronews, with Jean Obambi, Managing Director of Télé Congo, at the signing of the pair’s partnership.Euronews’ sister TV channel, Africanews, is due to launch across sub-Saharan Africa on April 20, following the launch of the network’s news website in January.At a press conference at MIPTV in Cannes today, Euronews’ director of distribution Arnaud Verlhac said that the pan-African news channel will be broadcast by SES via its SES-4 and SES-5 satellites.The channel will be available via Canal+ Afrique across 25 countries via satellite and DTT as part of its ‘Bouquets de Canal+’ packages. Startimes will also carry the network via DTT and satellite in the nine countries where it currently provides service.Other operator deals announced today were with Zuku, which distributes more than 100 channels across East Africa via satellite, and in parts of Kenya via cable. Africanews will also be carried via Nigerian IPTV service Suburban.At launch, Africanews, which is 100% owned by Euronews, will be available in some 7.3 million homes across 33 African countries, according to the company.Speaking at the press conference, Euronews CEO Michael Peters confirmed that new channel is part of a wider plan to offer more regional offerings, in answer to a question about whether Euronews was now planning projects such as an Asianews or an Americanews channel.“We are in discussions with some partners now. Yes we have this project to launch new regional media offers. I think that this goes into this strategy of ‘All Views’ and not imposing one brand. I think that this is, philosophically, something important for us.Peters also stressed that Africanews “is not Euronews Africa” with some 90% of the channel’s output to be African content, with Africanews now employing 85 media professionals across 15 countries in sub-Saharan Africa.“We are not coming to Africa to give the point of view of Europeans to Africans,” said Peters. “We bring our expertise in terms of producing quality content.”The Euronews CEO said that the focus on pure African content marks a change in the original strategy for the delayed Africanews, which was due to launch in January.Initially the company planned to programme the channel with 80% Euronews-originated content and 20% Africanews, with that split to be reversed gradually over a period of five years.However, Peters said he quickly realised that this would not be possible as it would lead to the “cannibalisation” of Euronews, with Africanews now positioned well to sit alongside and co-exist with Euronews.Separately, Euronews used the press conference to also announce a new look for the Euronews channel on 17 May, around the new brand claim “Euronews, All Views.” This day will also see the beta launch of the new Euronews.com website.