SAT-ITALY 20.12.1996


The Italian pay-TV operator Telepiu has signed a ten-year deal with Disney
ABC International Television for pay-per-view and pay-TV rights of its
programs. The deal was signed by Robert Hersov  vice-president of Telepiu,
and Herbert Granath and Etienne de Villiers, president and director general
of Disney ABC. This deal covers all non-animation movies produced and
distributed by Disney Pictures, Hollywood Pictures, Touchstone Pictures and
Miramax. Among them are "101 Dalmatians" starring Glen Close and "The rock"
starring Sean Connery and Nicholas Cage.
The deal also calls for the launch of a specialized Disney channel for
Italy, which will start during 1997 as part of Telepiu's digital package
DSTV. The channel will be in the Italian language and Telepiu has an
exclusive contract for satellite, cable and terrestrial carriage.
Disney ABC International Television was founded 6 months ago and has its
headquarters in London. It integrates all activities of ABC Inc. in the
areas of transmission, cable and sales and coordinates contacts with other
international organizations and TV channels. 

In relation to last week's story on SAT-ITALY, it seems that RAI and
Mediaset are also ready to cooperate in offering a joint television service
for Italian expatriates. Roberto Morrione, director of RAI International
said that it if two major international competitors such as Canal Plus and
Nethold agreed to join forces, it is more than natural that RAI and Mediaset
can cooperate in offering a better TV service to Italians abroad (their
number is estimated at around 65 million). 
One of Mediaset's key executives, Davide Rampello has not excluded the
possibility of reaching an agreement with RAI and underlined the importance
of "producing programs which are highly competitive on the international

The Court of Justice of the European Union in Brussels has deliberated that
teleshopping programs can be included in the daily advertising limits
regulated by the European directive "Television without frontiers". This
court interpretation of the EU directive from 1989 comes as an answer to a
request by the Mediaset channels who appealed to a Ministerial decree which
said that "teleshopping programs do not conform to EU norms". The EU court
ruling says "if the daily advertising limit amounts to 15% of transmission
time, this percentile can be raised to 20% in order to include teleshopping

The Minister for communications of the Republic of San Marino, Augusto
Casali and the director general of Telecom Italia, Tomaso Tommasi di Vignano
have signed an agreement for introducing cable television in this tiny
European country. In the next 2 years, the Italian state telecommunications
operator Telecom Italia will build a network infrastructure working on
high-band frequencies which will enable the citizens of San Marino to enjoy
a wide range of multimedia services.

Italian media magnate Vittorio Cecchi Gori has been enjoying the recent
court ruling in Florence which has granted him the broadcast TV rights for
the next two years for Italian league football. At a press conference he
said "The TV rights have been ours from the very beginning. We have only
suceeded in getting them one year later, but with huge losses in revenue for
which we will seek an adequate indemnation". He also criticized RAI for not
exploring enough the potential of the rights package, by broadcasting league
highlights at midnight (he plans to show them in a prime-time slot, around
19:00 hours). 
Cecchi Gori said that he has no plans for sharing the TV rights since they
will, together with recent movie titles, provide the backbone of programming
for his TV channels from next autumn. On the other hand, he has admitted
that most probably he will offer the radio rights to RAI since he has no use
for them. Roberto Morrione, president of RAI International hopes that there
"still exists a chance for negotiations, which RAI will certainly make use of".
It seems all this publicity has been a godsend for Cecchi Gori since it
appears that several foreign media companies have expressed interest in
taking a stake in his company. Among them are two  German media giants -
Bertelsmann and Kirch (who is selling his stake in pay-TV network Telepiu). 

On December 16th, the Italian government and the major opposition parties
have finally reached an agreement on several key points of the new
Telecommunications bill which is yet to be approved by the Parliament. All
licenses for terrestrial TV stations which were to have run out on January
31st have been extended until May 31st with the possibility of another
extension of up to 60 days. State-run TV RAI has been authorized to start
experimental digital TV broadcasts (in the clear), but will not yet be able
to start pay-TV channels. 

The administrative council of Ente Cinema which is the current owner of the
Cinecitta studios in Rome, announced on December 14th who will take over the
running of the legendary film studios. A new society called Cinecitta
Servizi will be created and its shareholders will be the following
companies: RAI (20%), Mediaset (20%), Fin.ma.vi - owned by media magnate
Cecchi Gori (10%), Rank Group (20%) and a further 10% will go to a
consortium headed by 11 independent movie producers. Ente Cinema which is
the public holding company of the Italian Ministry of finances is to keep
20% of the new joint-venture.
The employees of Cinecitta have threatened to go on strike accusing the
current owners of selling off Cinecitta to TV companies, since 50% has been
assigned to media companies whose interests are mainly in the TV field. They
say that this will mean a death sentence to Italian cinema and Cinecitta
will be used for production of cheap TV programming such as talk-shows and
entertainment programs.

                                   FOR THE WEEK DECEMBER 22-28

22.XII - RETE 4, 20:40h - Quigley down under (USA-90) starring: Tom Selleck,
Alan Rickman
22.XII - ITALIA 1, 20:40h - Weihnachten mit Willy Wuff (GER-95) starring:
Simon Glocklhofer
22.XII - RAI DUE, 20:50h - Who who's Geli Bendl (USA-95) starring: Caroll
O'Connor, Sydne Rome
22.XII - CANALE 5, 23:35h - Flash Gordon (USA-80) starring: Sam J.Jones,
Topol, Max von Sydow
22.XII - RETE 4, 23:40h - 3:10 for Yuma (USA-57) starring: Glenn Ford, Van
23.XII - ITALIA 1, 20:30h - Twins (USA-89) starring: Arnold Scharzenegger,
Danny de Vito
23.XII - RAI UNO, 20:50h - Homeward bound (USA-92) starring: Robert Hays,
Kim Greist
23.XII - CANALE 5, 20:50h - Fantaghiro 5 (ITA) starring: Alessandra
Martines, Brigitte Nielsen
23.XII - RAI UNO, 22:20h - Sabrina (USA-54) starring: Audrey Hepburn,
Humphrey Bogart, William Holden
23.XII - RETE 4, 22:40h - Captain Horatio Hornblower (USA-51) starring:
Gregory Peck, Virginia Mayo
24.XII - ITALIA 1, 20:30h - Change of heart (CAN-95) starring: Sarah
Campbell, Jeremy Ratchford
24.XII - RETE 4, 20:40h - Guardie e ladri (ITA-51) starring: Toto, Aldo Fabrizi
24.XII - RAI UNO, 20:50h - Alice in Wonderland (USA-51) - Diznijev
dugometra`ni crtani film
24.XII - RAI DUE, 20:50h - The big country (USA-58) starring: Gregory Peck,
Jean Simmons
24.XII - CANALE 5, 23:00h - C'era un castello con 40 cani (ITA-90) starring:
Peter Ustinov, Roberto Alpi
24.XII - RETE 4, 23:15h - Hello Dolly (USA-69) starring: Barbra Streisand,
Walter Matthau
24.XII - RAI DUE, 23:30h - City lights (USA-31) starring: Charlie Chaplin
24.XII - RAI TRE, 01:20h - The French lieutenant's woman (USA-81) starring:
Meryl Streep, Jeremy Irons (na engleskom, sa italijanskim titlovima)
25.XII - RAI UNO, 16:45h - Dumbo (USA-41) - Disney animated feature
25.XII - ITALIA 1, 20:30h - Trading places (USA-83) starring: Eddie Murphy,
Dan Aykroyd, Jamie Lee Curtis
25.XII - RAI UNO, 20:50h - Mary Poppins (USA-65) starring: Julie Andrews,
Dick van Dyke
25.XII - CANALE 5, 20:50h - Fantaghiro 5 (ITA) - Part II
25.XII - ITALIA 1, 22:30h - Spies like us (USA-85) starring: Chevy Chase,
Dan Aykroyd
25.XII - CANALE 5, 23:15h - Batteries not included (USA-87) starring: Hume
Cronyn, Jessica Tandy
26.XII - RAI TRE, 20:30h - The man who knew too much (USA-56) starring:
James Stewart, Doris Day
26.XII - ITALIA 1, 20:30h - Teen agent (USA-91) starring: Richard Grieco,
Gabrielle Anwar
26.XII - RETE 4, 20:40h - Friendly persuasion (USA-56) starring: Gary
Cooper, Dorothy McGuire
26.XII - RAI UNO, 20:50h - Il piccolo lord (ITA/GER-95) starring: Mario
Adorf, Francesco De Pasquale
26.XII - ITALIA 1, 22:30h - The fisher king (USA-91) starring: Robin
Williams, Jeff Bridges
26.XII - RETE 4, 23:20h -  The texan (USA-48) starring: Pedro Armendariz,
John Wayne
27.XII - RAI TRE, 20:30h - Back to the future 2 (USA-89) starring: Michael
J.Fox, Christopher Lloyd
27.XII - ITALIA 1, 20:30h - Anche gli angeli mangiano (ITA-72) starring: Bud
Spencer, Giuliano Gemma
27.XII - RETE 4, 20:40h - Danielle Steel's hearbeat (USA-92) starring: John
Ritter, Polly Draper
27.XII - RAI DUE, 20:50h - Rent-a-kid (USA-95) starring: Matt McCoy, Leslie
27.XII - RETE 4, 22:45h - Il colosso di Rodi (ITA-61) starring: Rory
Calhoun, Lea Massari
28.XII - RAI DUE, 20:50h - Unlawful passage (USA-94) starring: Felicity
Waterman, Lee Horsley
28.XII - RETE 4, 20:40h - They came to Cordura (USA-59) starring: Gary
Cooper, Rita Hayworth, Van Heflin
28.XII - ITALIA 1, 22:30h - Star Trek V - The final frontier (USA-89)
starring: William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy
28.XII - CANALE 5, 23:30h - Heaven can wait (USA-78) starring: Warren
Beatty, Julie Christie, James Mason

22.XII - RAI TRE, 09:25h - Alpine skiing: World cup, Super G (w) from
22.XII - RAI TRE, 10:00h - Alpine skiing: World cup, Super G (m) from Alta Badia
22.XII - RAI DUE, 19:00h - Basketball: Italian league FONTANAFREDDA
28.XII - RAI TRE, 09:25h - Alpine skiing: World cup, slalom (w) from Semering
28.XII - RAI TRE, 15:20h - Volleyball: Italian league (m) LUBE BANCA MARCHE

23.XII - RETE 4. 20:40h - Young Mozarts - live from Monte Carlo
24.XII - CANALE 5, 20:50h - Christmas in Vatican - taking part are Dionne
Warwick, Claudio Baglioni, Laura Pausini, Los del Rio, Ron, soprano Ana
Maria Gonzales, Frederic Francois, Queen Esther Marrow, Harlem Gospel
Singers, Swiss choir Zurcher Sangerknaben, Andrea Griminelli i  Russian
violinist Maxim Vengerov. 
26.XII - RAI DUE, 14:10h - Zucchero in concert

N.B. Please note that due to the Christmas and New Year holidays, SAT-ITALY
will, next week  only include Programme highlights. The regular news service
returns on January 3rd. A very Merry Christmas to all SAT-ITALY subscribers.

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