HD Heads-Up: February 16

The networks have lined up a raft of free-to-air movie premieres for the week starting February 25 but the most recent is being buried late-night. TVNZ 2 will screen Johnny Depp’s 2015 bomb, Mortdecai, at 11.45 on February 25. The same weekend it will premiere the obscure Melissa McCarthy-Susan Sarandon vehicle, Tammy (8.45 Sunday), and the horror, Annabelle (10.35 Sunday). Three will premiere Kingsman: The Secret Service (8.30 Sunday) …

The rest of that week’s coming attractions in HD will include: Inkheart (TVNZ 2, 7.00 Saturday), Garfield (Three, 7.00 Saturday), Kill Bill: Volume 2 (TVNZ 2, 9.05 Saturday), The Do-Deca-Pentathlon (Three, 11.00 Saturday), Girl in Progress (TVNZ 2, 1.50am Sunday), Devil’s Due (Three, 11.00 Sunday), Broken City (Prime, 8.35 Monday), The Ugly Truth (Three, 8.40 Wednesday) and The Bourne Legacy (Three, 8.30 Thursday) …

Prime will premiere Bruce Springsteen – In His Own Words on February 28. Britain’s The Arts Desk says Springsteen had “an interesting tale to tell, and he did it with a canny wit” and recommends it to “anyone who is interested in fame, friendship, family relationships and the creative process” …

Prime will screen season four of Ross Kemp: Extreme World 9.30 Wednesdays from March 1. Season five’s already aired in the UK and Kemp’s filming season six but wonders how many more will be feasible post-Brexit because “the plummeting pound could force him to cut shoots short,” he told the Daily Mail …

TVNZ 1 will launch its latest 8.30 Monday procedural, APB, on February 27. It debuted two weeks ago in the US to mostly mediocre reviews. About a billionaire who turns a Chicago police district into his own private security force, it was variously described as “ho-hum” (Los Angeles Times), “so-dumb” (Entertainment Weekly) and “a lot of whiz-bang” (New York Times). Quipped The Hollywood Reporter: “This is just another in a very large pile of not-very-good ideas that got turned into a TV show” …

The Guardian dubbed another TVNZ 1 newcomer, How To Stay Young (9.30 Tuesdays from February 28), “a fascinating twirl through what, they promised, was actual, proper science on what will help us live more healthily for longer … A thought-provoking hour that will have had every viewer mentally calculating how many years they could add to their life by dropping this, taking up that and eating more of the other” …

Guesting on the March 3 broadcast of The Graham Norton Show (Three, 8.00 Friday) will be Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Ben Affleck, Sienna Miller and Gregory Porter …

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6 Responses to “HD Heads-Up: February 16”

  1. Three are certainly ramping up the good movies as Kingsman: The Secret Service is an excellent movie 🙂

  2. Hi Philip, last night TVNZ flashed a promo below screen during Coro, saying it will be airing three nights a week from March 9. Are you able to confirm if this will be the 7.30pm slot Thursday to Saturday? I am a little perplexed they are committing to Coro again after moving it around. I also see they are airing encores at noon on weekends which maybe a precursor to the changes.

  3. No such luck, Leo. TVNZ 1’s simply pushing back Coro to a later slot — 9.30 Thursday-Saturday — so it can free up 8.30 Fridays for lightweight dramas like Call the Midwife. The weekday re-runs will switch to a Saturday omnibus so TVNZ 1 can clear its schedule for stripped episodes of Britain’s Got Talent 1pm from Monday-Friday. While promoting Coro as screening three nights a week sounds like a better deal for fans, it’s just a reshuffle of a show TVNZ 1 doesn’t know what to do with: its 25-54 ratings have suffered from (i) years of haphazard scheduling and (ii) the episodes being nearly two years old at the same time as Coro continues to be one of TVNZ On-Demand’s most streamed series. So it doesn’t want to lose the property to Sky/Prime but isn’t willing to schedule it with the respect it deserves or recognise the potential better programming and promotion could unlock.

  4. TVNZ 1 should do what Channel Nine did in Australia with its US daytime soaps about a decade ago and jump ahead to UK screening. Film a special of ‘what you’ve missed’ with the big storylines of the last 2 years, do interviews with the actors etc. Promote it that it’ll be same week as the UK. It’s certainly gaining no new viewers but the legacy viewers deserve a bit better. And I don’t even watch it.

  5. It’s worthy of consideration, especially since Coro is about to enter one of its flattest creative patches in years. For the Coro diehards, TVNZ On-Demand could always put up the ‘missing episodes’ as part of a Coro archive. And, as you say, being in sync with UK broadcasts would do wonders for re-igniting interest in the Weatherfield warhorse.

  6. Cheers, Philip, for the update. Disappointed TVNZ is pushing Coro further down the schedule. This soap has so much potential as you have pointed out yet the powers that be at TVNZ don’t see it. Such a waste to see it languish at 9.30 which inevitably means it will be pushed out of primetime should it fail to gain an audience. One can only hope that the soap some how gains a new following as a late-night time soap. If TVNZ don’t see the potential in this soap they should relinquish the rights to Prime or god forbid UKTV or better yet launch a new TVNZ Extra channel to air programmes it no longer deems worthy on its main channels. I wish this soap all the best as it enters an uncertain future on NZ television.

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