What a week! In case you were hiding under a rock, we hit the date programmed into the Delorean in the film ‘Back to the Future Part 2′!
Television stations around the world played the film last night to happy audiences reliving a moment of eighties nostalgia. They probably laughed at the self-tightening shoelaces and shook their heads in the knowledge that we still don’t have a hoverboard, but none of that happened here in France. No.
No. While I read my friends’ social media updates about settling down for the evening to watch Marty McFly and all the fun about to happen in an alternate 2015, I flicked from channel to channel trying to find the film. I remembered it being advertised last week when Back to the Future Part 1 was being shown.
Mais non! I’m in France — the country where you’re expected to turn up for dinner at a friend’s place at least two hours late; the country where is just now starting to introduce Sunday shopping in some districts of Paris to appease the tourists (err, yes, Paris, the worlds most popular tourist destination); the country that does slow food even at fast food restaurants (honestly, how can it take that long to stick some fries in a bag?).
No, Back to the Future Part 2 is due on the small screens around the country tonight. That’s a day late:
Yes Doc, that’s right. While the rest of the world was watching you, France was still waiting for le futur.
There’s a reason for this, which a French friend explained to me today. New films are released at the cinema on Wednesdays, so to ensure a good turn-out, French public TV doesn’t air films. Private station Canal+ was taken to court over their airing of films on Wednesday nights, but they argued that they’re a private company who should be able to compete with other private companies, including paid-for movie channels without the Wednesday restriction. They won, by the way. A few public channels now seem to air films, but the majority do not.
Tonight, I’ll be curling up on the couch watching Marty McFly travel to the future of yesterday. It would have been more fun last night.