This was us during the week Avengers: Endgame premiered: we spent as little time as we could on social media in hopes of avoiding spoilers. We double checked the movie tickets we booked weeks in advance. (We have good seats, not the front row, nor at the side where our head always rests in a weird angle for the rest of the movie). We carefully chose the people we were bringing to the movie, our circle of trust.
Now imagine all of that being ruined because you’re casually flipping channels on the TV. What in the flying f***, you think. And right at the moment that [redacted] gets [redacted]. The movie is ruined.
For some viewers in Dipolog, Zamboanga del Norte in the Philippines, it’s pretty much what happened. Orient Cable, a local cable provider, had the genius idea of showing Endgame a day after its premiere in the Philippines.
To make matters worse, based on the photos of the airing on social media, it’s a bad copy. It’s like something straight out of a sketchy torrent site filled with pop-ups. (It probably did come from one). As they should, Orient Cable is getting sued by local movie house Teatro de Dapitan, according to a report by the Philippine News Agency, because of the blatant piracy. After Teatro de Dapitan's lawyers approached the police, Orient Cable stopped airing the movie, and here’s the clincher: replaced it with another old but pirated version of Philippine superhero movie Captain Barbel. Orient Cable declined to issue a statement when visited by reporters.
It looks like Orient Cable violated several laws in the Philippines, including the Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines, the Anti-Camcording Act, and the Cybercrime Prevention Act. But aside from that, they’ve also committed an atrocity by spoiling a highly-anticipated film… and doing a very, very bad job at it.