Thursday, November 25, 2004

The BBC publishes details about the success of Hitchhikers on Internet

The 3rd phase of the Hitchhiker's, based on Life the Universe and Everything, has been broadcasted from 21st september to the 26th October both on the air and on Internet.

As you know, Radio 4 has made a great mini site about Hitchhikers to celebrate the new series attracting a lot of people (with a lot of great sections and even a new version of the famous Hitchhiker's text game). And the episodes were avalaible for listening during seven days on Internet.

Of course the success has been overwhelming but noone expected that more than one million persons would listen to the radio series on Internet and 40.000 players would be attracted by the new online edition of the old Infocom text game.

For the fist time, the BBC has published in october a press release with accurate details about their success on the web. In this press release, they say that "nearly six million people used the BBC's radio websites in October, listening to more than 10 million hours of radio via the internet and generating almost 160,000,000 page impressions, new figures reveal". Simon Nelson, Controller of BBC Radio & Music Interactive, said: "These are the first set of monthly statistics we have published and they show record numbers for both online listening and web traffic". In fact, one year before, the BBC radios attracted a little less than 4 million listeners. Two millions more in one year is not too bad, and obviously Hitchhikers had an effect on the BBC radio's success on line.

For october, Radio 4 got the first place in top 30 on demand programmes with 653.636 persons listening to Hitchhikers on the web (this include the four episodes broadcasted in october, the first and second episodes were broadcasted in september). Hitchhikers is far ahead the other programs. The classcial soap "Archers" gets the second place (still on Radio 4) with 382.726 listeners. Chris Moyle got 325.975 listeners on Radio 1. And all the other programs score less than 200.000 listeners.
Thanks to Hitchhikers, Radio 4 was in october the second most successful BBC radio network on Internet with 1.247.445 visitors. Radio 1 is still first with 2.352.366 visitors

Sunday, November 21, 2004

New design and content for the official site

One week after the first big publicity for the Hitchhiker's movie with a new version of the trailer and artwork published on Yahoo, the official website has been redisigned and has got some new content.
The new design is based on the famous teaser first seen this summer. The movie logo welcomes you, and then there is a page where the teaser appears in small size with the official opening date, May 6, 2005. From this main page you can access to a download area (great deskstops, icons and poster), some concept art (the same already seen on yahoo), the new teaser in various sizes and medias, and the good old movie blog. So this is no revolution, but a good new version of the official site.

The blog has been updated with two news but nothing very new in fact. Anyway it's very funny that they have made a little wink to my site, explaining about the strange note (you know the one with the babel fish) which previously appeared on the site that "The sheer bloody-mindedness of the Vogons threatened to close our production blog down forever when they hacked onto the site, however, we have managed to bring it back in the form of "Official Movie News"." Ok, so no my website is not the only one that have been hijacked by Vogons!


Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Three new pieces of concept artwork!

MJ Simpson, Duke (from Douglas, h2g2 and me all got the luck today to get three new exclusive pieces of concept artwork to show you. That's of course great news, and I'm very proud to show them to you. The first pic is obvioulsy Arthur Dent among the ruins of his house. We can guess it's a Vogon spaceship just above his head. On the second one, our heroes wander on a dead planet (Magrathea?). And where is the guy with two heads? (mmh, make you think?). The third one is the most mysterious. Which are these creatures?

Friday, November 12, 2004

New teaser and pics on yahoo!

This is the first major step of the official marketing campaign of the Hitchhiker's movie. The international buzz campaign is kicking off with an exclusive partnership deal with Yahoo in the US, UK and Germany. They have been given a new version of the Comicon trailer - which is slightly different to the one we all have already seen. In fact, it's there is the first glimpse of the actual Guide at the end of the trailer. Nothing fabulously new but very nice anyway. At the end, you can see the official opening date : the 6th may. Alongside this, Yahoo have also been given eight pieces of very nice concept artwork (featuring the Heart of Gold and Marvin) to showcase along with the official teaser poster, brief synopsis and cast info.

The UK link was the first to be online and was quickly anounced from the main page! But it just features the trailer in windows media player version. If you want to see the pics and more infos you have to go on US yahoo here. You will be able to see also the trailer in Quicktime.

Of course, you have guessed that there is still no actual pictures of the movie! They really want to tease us as long as they can.

Let's remember anyway that MJ Simpson, Duke and myself will get something exclusive to show you soon, Tuesday the 16th.

Wednesday, November 3, 2004

About the Hotdog article + movie tie-ins editions + official movie website little update

First, sorry to everybody for the lack of updates last week but I was in holidays.


We thought that noone would miss the first big article about Hitchhikers. But we didn miss it. Gladly, DarthBastard posted the article on Duke's forum. In its september issue , the UK film magazine "Hotdog" made a good small article about the upcoming movie.

it's not that long, but the article quotes Martin Freeman (Arthur), Sam Rockwell (Zaphod), Robbie Stamp (executive producer) and Garth Jenkins (director) !

According to Robbie Stamp, they have two distincts advantages to make the movie : 'I genuinely think finally we had a script that worked - writer Karey Kirkpatrick had access to Douglas' hard drive full of ideas, and the raw energy and enthusiasm of Nick and Garth who had absolutely a vision of how this could look".

Garth told the magazine that the film is a "peach of a project", "first and foremost a comedy" and not a typical CGI molested SF movie. It's with this idea in their head, that they decided to work with Jim Henson Creature Workshop to make the Vogons and Marvin.

According to the magazine, the movie will be a further evolution of Adams' universe with brand new features including the "Point of view gun" and Humma Kavula (played by John Malkovitch). And indeed I can say that the new features are quite important in the movie. That's Sam Rockwell's point of view too : "It's different from the book, the TV series and the radio play. But it is from Douglas Adams".

Speaking about their own parts, Martin Freeman says that "We didn't want to go for that Uncle Bulgaria look - apologies to fans of the Wombles... It's a bit more low key than that, as opposed to the 'I'm and uptight Englishman' look".

And Sam Rockwell tells about Zaphod that "A lot of it I'm ripping off from my mate Vince Vaughn, who has this fascination with doing Elvis Presley impressions... He's kind of like Jeff Spicoli from Fast Times at Ridgemont High meets Beetlejuice, and alot of my stuff comes from Bill Clinton, Elvis Presley and a little bit of George W Bush." And what about Zaphod's head : "Ah... 'The Head Thing'. It's a surprise - there may not be a second head, all I can tell you is Zaphod has a lot of repressed energy."

You can see a scan of the article here( thanks to DarthBastard again).


MJ Simpson spotted on his website some days ago that there will be tie-ins editions of the five Hitchhikers books for the US and the UK market. There will be new covers of course but the most important thing about them is that there will be movie related introductions wrote by executive producer Robbie Stamp. Robbie informed MJ Simpson that "the piece, which covers the movie's development as much as its production, will include exclusive interviews with the principal cast". US editions will be published in april in both paperback and trade paperback formats by Del Rey.


Not much but you can see a pop-up message written in strange language when you enter the official blog. In fact it's Pitman's shorthand. if you click on the drawing of what must be a Babel fish (it turns yellow when you pass the cursor over it), you will have the english translation “WAIT HERE – We apologise for any convenience.