Cliff's heading for Christmas No 1 (but don't worry, he's not singing...)
Even Justin Bieber trails in the veteran's wake when it comes to calendar sales
Adam Sherwin is Media Correspondent at The Independent and an award-winning writer who specialises in covering the entertainment, broadcasting, music and popular culture industries. Previously Media writer and diarist at The Times, he was a co-founder of the Beehive City media and entertainment website. As regular contributor to BBC London 94.9 Radio station, he was named Music Business writer of the year at the awards of influential music industry site Record of the Day in 2006.
Friday 16 December 2011
He's been snubbed by radio stations and given up hope of the Christmas number one. But Sir Cliff Richard can console himself that he is still king of the pin-ups after his 2012 calendar outsold the offering from teen idol Justin Bieber.
Cliff's calendar features the 71 year-old in a series of buff, all-action poses and even includes a topless shot of the singing legend. It has proved so popular that Cliff 2012 is outselling the latest effort from the Canadian heart-throb Bieber, web retailer Amazon said.
Take That, Cheryl Cole, Kylie Minogue and Michael Bublé are all trailing in Cliff's wake. Only the X Factor-created groups One Direction and JLS have shifted more calendars this year.
Cliff's calendar is being sold to his target audience with the tagline: "Release the 'Devil Women' in you and pin our Cliff to your wall for the next 366 days." It is not clear if the Christian singer approved the racy sales pitch. The calendar depicts him astride a motorcycle, swimming with dolphins, preparing to paraglide and alongside his trusty steed, in a series of Vladimir Putin-style pictures demonstrating his virility.
Danilo, publishers of the calendar, said that Cliff had sold 1.5 million copies over the years, more than David Beckham. The top female seller, Kylie, had sold just 750,000 calendars.
Danilo however has high hopes for a calendar featuring Mark Wright, from the Only Way Is Essex reality series, who is depicted naked with just a towel covering his modesty.
Boyband One Direction's 2012 offering was named the best-selling celebrity calendar on record by Amazon. Its sales remain some 240 per cent ahead of Cliff's top-selling 2011 release. Calendars selling strongly this Christmas include Moshi Monsters, television series the Vampire Diaries and Elvis Presley.
Sir Cliff, who this year released an album of soul collaborations, said he would not compete for a fifth Christmas chart-topping single because "X Factor had killed the Christmas Number 1."
Film Leonardo DiCaprio hunts Tom Hardy
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Malaysia issues arrest warrant for Gordon Brown’s sister-in-law after she publishes stories on leader Najib Razak's financial affairs
- 2 Porn block in India: hundreds of sexual websites banned, internet outraged
- 3 Natalia Molchanova: World's most successful free-diver missing and feared dead after disappearing in Mediterranean
- 4 Dutch King Willem-Alexander declares the end of the welfare state
- 5 Gamers confess the worst things they've done in The Sims
The Great British Bake Off, series 6, preview: The most popular show on television is back
National Geographic Traveller Photo Contest 2015 winners in pictures
US bookshop offers Go Set A Watchman refunds over false marketing as 'nice summer novel'
Sherlock season 4: Benedict Cumberbatch will be 'a lot less brattish' in Victorian special
Bollywood stars Salman Khan, Amitabh Bachchan and Akshay Kumar enter Forbes' highest paid actors list for first time
Is Britain really full up? Are migrants taking our jobs? Leading academic answers the most common anti-immigration claims
Calais Migrant Crisis: Deputy Mayor of Calais labels Cameron's use of 'swarm' as 'racist' and 'ignorant'
Chris Leslie: Jeremy Corbyn's anti-austerity agenda will harm the poor, says Labour shadow Chancellor
Landlords renting properties to illegal immigrants to face up to five years in prison
While we fixate on Calais, the Home Office is quietly deporting dozens of migrants on 'ghost flights'
Labour leadership race: Jeremy Corbyn could be the next Prime Minister, says Ken Clarke