Underbelly: articles

Underbelly DVDs kept out of Victoria

BOXED DVD sets of Underbelly will go on sale interstate this week but special rules mean Victorians won't get their hands on copies.

Distributors Roadshow Entertainment and retail stores have been overwhelmed with advance orders for the Victorian gangland drama.

Those orders have snapped up all 60,000 boxed sets produced, with an extra 20,000 now in production.

The release, the day after the final episode is aired, comes as Nine confirms there will be a second series of the show, tipped by some to be a prequel to the events shown in the first series.

But Victorians are still banned from seeing the gangland drama.

There will be no online sales of the hit series from Roadshow Entertainment or any of the chains they will supply.

And the box sets will only be supplied to individual stores, not to the distribution centres of chains with online sales.

The online ban will extend even further with online auction site eBay likely to ban sales of the series.

An eBay spokesman said the company would be in touch with Victorian authorities and would likely implement a nationwide ban to keep the DVDs out of Victoria.

Roadshow Entertainment marketing director Paddy Bryans said all box sets and point of sale displays would carry a sticker or stamp reminding buyers the series was not for sale, distribution or exhibition in Victoria.

"We have taken very seriously our obligations in terms of what the court requires . . . in Victoria," Mr Bryans said.

Legal experts said Victorians who bought the boxed set interstate and watched it themselves at home would likely not fall foul of the law, but anyone who showed it more widely could be charged with contempt.

By Michelle Pountney
May 06, 2008
Herald Sun