Connecting with French fans: How CanalPlus is preparing for the Rugby World Cup
For rugby fans in France, CanalPlus will be providing coverage of every one of the 48 matches played in the UK for the World Cup championships. “We will be offering 27 of those games live to French viewers, either on CanalPlus or CanalPlus Sport,” states François Charles Bideaux, the station’s director of production. “In addition, we are broadcasting on every match day, a live and exclusive evening magazine called Day Of World Cup.”
That programme will be hosted by renowned sports presenter Isabelle Ithurburu, accompanied by seasoned reporter Guilhem Garrigues. “The editorial team led by Eric Bayle will offer in the magazine every day, the images of the competition, the inside stories, information and debates relating to all involved nations,” explains Bideaux. “Joining them in the Paris studio will be a collection of rugby greats, including Sebastien Chabal, Mourad Boudjellal, the iconic president of RC Toulon, Gonzalo Quesada, current coach of the French stage, and Christophe Urios, future coach of Castres Olympique.”
CanalPlus expects to have around 25 staff working in the UK for the duration of the tournament. Alongside general reporting, there will be specialist dedicated units following the French, England and All-Blacks teams.
The channel will supplement the Host Broadcaster (HB) coverage with its own cameras in the UK for those matches that involve the French national team. Stand-up positions will be used for all of those live games.
“The live coverage will include the dirty feed from ITV, but we will also take a clean feed for use on the highlights and magazine programme,” says Bideaux. “We will also take ISO feeds from the HB and all signals will be duplexed to Paris for switching there from our presentation gallery.”
App and on-demand content
Alongside the transmissions, all the live games will be made available through the CanalPlus Rugby Channel App. Subscribers to this service will be able to view related second screen features such as results, standings, and additional video feeds.
In addition to broadcasts on CanalPlus and CanalPlus Sport, all live matches and magazines will subsequently be made available through the On Demand service. With MyCANAL, subscribers can watch live games or recorded on their smartphones, tablet or PC.
Meanwhile, from 18 September to 31 October 2015, Canalplus.fr will offer additional content for the Internet. All the results – along with rankings, statistics and unpublished information – will be available on the web site.
“We will mobilise all our teams, all our human and technical resources in order to be closer to the event and to offer a truly rich treatment. With all of the expert opinion at our disposal – and the technology that adds a great deal of depth to our coverage – the Rugby World Cup will keep our viewers and subscribers exceptionally well-informed and very excited for more than a month,” concludes Bideaux.