Cinema owners ask if they are getting a fair deal financially from a three-hour Hobbit

December 31, 2012
We were given a break - and time for a pee - when they screened Cleopatra.

We were given a break – and time for a pee – when they screened Cleopatra.

Sir Peter Jackson, we may suppose, is laughing all the way to the bank on the back of The Hobbit.

Movie-goers, too, are doubtless chuffed by the film’s three-hour length, although Alf is bound to observe that this must require them to sit on their chuffs for three hours, which must be worse than sitting in the debating chamber for that period of time while Labour and Green politicians are banging on about this, that and the other.

But the people who run cinemas are not so thrilled, as you will learn here.

While those watching The Hobbit might have felt they got their money’s worth when it came down to the film’s three-hour length, cinemas showing the blockbuster were left feeling a little hard done by.

Now U.S. cinema owners have commissioned a report into losses suffered when screening a longer film four times a day rather than on six occasions, which is standard for a normal 90-minute film.

The National Association of Theatre Owners is the mob behind this initiative.

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Bread and circuses are prescribed to pacify the mob but an entertainment centre should do the trick

May 27, 2011

And if we run out of elephants, we could teach Gerry to sit up like this.

Alf is anticipating a bit of a hullabaloo from a raft of community groups that need weaning off government handouts.

The buggers are complaining today about the Government’s cutting $1.5 million from the Community Organisations Grants Scheme and giving it to four areas of its choosing.

Just imagine their chagrin when they find out about the $650,000 for rugby parties the Government is handing out in Christchurch.

More specifically, according to the Ministerial statement, the dosh is for a new temporary entertainment and performance events village to be set up in North Hagley Park.

The money will be ladelled from the Major Events Development Fund, according to the announcement today from Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee and Acting Economic Development Minister David Carter.

This is bloody good politics.

Christchurch needs cheering up after being constantly shaken up, and the poor buggers will be missing out on the Rugby World Cup matches that had been scheduled for their city before the earthquakes scuttled those plans.

The community workers who are being starved of funds are bleeding hearts who probably vote Labour.

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It would be news if it told us why Paris Hilton no longer believes in Santa Claus

December 25, 2009

There’s an extraordinary package of pap masquerading as news on Stuff this morning.

We are told Paris Hilton believed in Santa Claus until she was 16.

The important bit of the story is missing. Why did she stop believing at age 16?

The socialite thought the festive character was real until she was in her mid-teens and still makes her mother Kathy Hilton put out a stocking full of presents on Christmas Day so she can pretend he has paid her a visit.

She said: “We usually open our presents first thing in the morning. I’m like a kid at this time of year and I just can’t wait. I literally believed in Santa Claus until I was around 16!

“My mum still puts a stocking out for me so I can still pretend.”

What does she mean pretend?

Alf still believes in Santa Claus at the age of …

Well, let’s say he is of mature years.

And let me tell you, dear readers, that Santa dropped by over night as he always does at Christmas. Alf awoke this morning to find a splendid bottle of single malt in his Christmas stocking along with a new tie (it’s got a neat picture of Her Majesty the Queen waving to her admirers on it) and a pair of sox.

Who will be haunted by whom?

March 29, 2009

Frightening news for ghosts in The Telegraph today.

Wierdo entertainer Michael Jackson is to rent a house near haunted caves during his concerts in London.

The eccentric singer is reported to have paid £1 million to rent a large country house near the edge of an ancient 22-mile maze of haunted passageways.

The undisclosed home is thought to be close to the Chislehurst Caves in Bromley, in the south-east suburbs of London.

Ghost sightings have been reported at the caves, which were dug in chalk by the Saxons, Druids and Romans.

Just one glimpse of the creature pictured above should be enough – Alf imagines – to have any self-respecting ghost buggering off real fast to hunker down in a less threatening neighbourhood.

Fun things to do in the city

January 21, 2009

We are mind-boggled sometimes, out here in rural New Zealand, by city folks’ ideas of having fun.

In Manukau, according to a press statement that has just hit Alf’s desk, citizens are invited to Barry Curtis Park on 2 February to celebrate World Wetlands Day.

Good grief. Someone somewhere seems to put aside special days for just about everything. The big one for Alf (he confides) will be World Possum Pelt Tanning Day. Read the rest of this entry »