UK’s The Great British Bake Off, considered one of the hottest international reality formats at the moment, will get an U.S. adaptation by CBS. In a competitive situation, CBS has given a straight-to-series order to Bake Off (working title) for a launch next year. It will feature skilled amateur Americans competing in baking challenges with one ultimately being crowned the winner.
The Great British Bake Off, produced by Love Prods. and hosted by food writer Mary Berry and professional baker Paul Hollywood, has become a sleeper hit for BBC2, exploding in popularity since its 2010 launch. Last night’s third season finale peaked with 7.2 million viewers and averaged a series high 6.54 million (25.3% share among British viewers), beating its competitors on the more established BBC One and ITV1. The format has been successfully adapted on DR-1 in Denmark and on TV4 in Sweden, where it ranks as the highest rated show in the channel’s history. It also has been sold in Belgium, Poland, Australia, Ireland, Norway and France. Love Prods. USA will produce the CBS series with Richard McKerrow, executive producer on the original series, executive producing. CBS, NBC and ABC had been looking to enter the lucrative food reality space and join Fox, home of Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares and MasterChef, and Bravo, which has Top Chef.
EXCLUSIVE: In what has become a network tradition, AMC held its pilot script showcase last week. The annual event, nicknamed by agents and producers “bake-off,” once again featured six scripts identified by AMC brass as the strongest pilot contenders. In a series of presentations, the writers/producers of each project laid out their vision for their show beyond the pilot with the help of visual aids, including demo reels. I hear the six scripts that made the cut this year are Chris Mundy‘s Low Winter Sun, an adaptation of the British Gothic murder mystery series; Craig Silverstein and Mitchell Akselrad‘s Turn, about George Washington’s spy ring; Richard LaGravenese‘s Philly Lawyer, about a law student; Jake Paltrow & Robbie Kinberg‘s Crystal Pines, about a journalist who signs up for a cloning experiment; Jason Cahill‘s F/V Mean Tide, about a Maine lobster fishing family; and Kerry Williamson‘s Sacred Games, an epic story of crime and punishment in modern Mumbai based on the novel by Vikram Chandra. AMC executives will spend the next few weeks evaluating the six projects. The network could order as many as two pilots out of the group. Last year, none of the six scripts that made it to the presentation stage went to pilot. In previous years, the scripts for The Killing and Hell On Wheels were among the finalists. Both were picked up to pilot and then to series, which have been renewed for a second season. Looking ahead to the next … Read More »
There is a lot of buzz building for three of the six AMC scripts that took part in the network’s annual pilot script “bake-off” earlier this month: Voyage, The Man With the Golden Ears and The 4th Estate. In the “bake-off,” six scripts identified by AMC brass faced off in a series of elaborate presentations, with the producing team for each project showing a promo reel and each creator pitching in detail the series beyond the pilot, including mapping out the first season. AMC brass are not expected to make a decision until the week of April 4, when they will probably pick up one or two of the scripts to pilots, but three of the six finalists have been getting a lot of buzz. Read More »
What’s cooking at AMC? It’s the cable network’s second annual pilot script showcase called “bake-off,” which took place from Monday to Thursday this week at a hotel in Los Angeles. In it, six scripts identified by AMC brass as finalists for a pilot order faced off in a series of elaborate presentations, with the producing team for each project showing a promo reel and each creator pitching in detail the series beyond the pilot, including mapping out the first season. In the next couple of weeks, AMC executives will mull over the presentations and are expected to announce one or two winners from the bake-off, whose scripts will go to pilot. I hear that the number of pilot pickups will depend on whether AMC lands the MRC-produced David Fincher-Kevin Spacey drama project House of Cards. AMC is one of several cable networks bidding on the project, with HBO and Starz also said to be in the running. If AMC lands House of Cards, it is expected to pick up one pilot developed internally; if not, two of the six scripts showcased this week will probably get green light.
This is the second year AMC is doing the bake-off. Among the projects competing in last year’s event was Hell on Wheels, which went to pilot and then to series.