‘Lucy’ To Open Locarno Film Festival
Luc Besson’s Lucy is set to open the Locarno Film Festival on August 6. Scarlett Johansson and Morgan Freeman star in the sci-fi pic about a woman caught in a dark deal who turns the tables on her captors and transforms into a merciless warrior. Besson showed extended clips at CineEurope in Barcelona a few weeks ago that handily demonstrated Johansson’s badass-ness in the vein of other of his strong female heroes. The director will be on hand in Switzerland to present the movie that’s produced by his EuropaCorp. Universal releases Stateside on July 25.
Brazil’s ‘SuperStar’ Gets Season 2 Renewal
Rising Star’s Brazilian version, SuperStar, has been renewed for a second season — this is the first renewal for a local version. Rede Globo has ordered a 14-episode second season of Superstar to air in 2015. The Keshet International format had its finale on Sunday and was the most-watched show of the night, peaking with a 33% share and 3M votes. It averaged a 31% share throughout the first season, during which the voting app was downloaded 3.2M times and about 25M votes were cast. The other international versions currently airing are in Portugal and the U.S. Season 2 of the original Israeli format is prepping up.
‘Mandela’ Getting Wide Release In China
In a first for a South African film in China, … Read More »
Plenty Of Glory For ‘Gutz’ In The Philippines
E!‘s first international reality series, It Takes Gutz To Be A Gutierrez, has been given an early renewal for Season 2. The trials and tribulations of the Filipino showbiz clan broke ratings records throughout the S1 run, becoming the channel’s most watched program in the Philippines since January 2013. At its peak, it made E! the No. 1 channel in its primetime slot among key demographics. The series also performed well in Malaysia. As in cinema, producing for local audiences can be a lucrative business. NBC Universal’s E! is aiming to build a superstar family reality franchise in Asia with the Gutz. The six-episode series gives viewers unfiltered access to the Gutierrez family, which includes former beauty queen Ruffa; her twin brothers, actor Richard and fashionista Raymond; and their parents, veteran screen star Eddie and political aspirant/talent manager Annabelle. The season finale of It Takes Gutz To Be A Gutierrez airs July 6. Here’s a trailer:
‘Rising Star’ Heading To Italy On Mediaset Canale 5
Rising Star has found a broadcast home in Italy. The Keshet International format will be produced for Mediaset Canale 5 by Sony Pictures Television’s local shingle, Toro Produzioni. Eight episodes have been commissioned to air during the 2015 season. Rising Star has sold to over 25 international markets. Brazil, Portugal and the U.S. are currently on air. A second season is planned at … Read More »
Currently airing in Brazil, Portugal and the U.S. — where reviews have been lackluster and ratings slipped 20% in the demo on Sunday night from last week’s ABC series debut — Rising Star is taking the next evolutionary step in the singing competition arena. Keshet International and Universal Music Group have entered a multi-territory deal, excluding the U.S. and Israel, which will see UMG acquire exclusive options to sign artist agreements with any or all show contestants. Separately, Keshet DCP has signed a deal with UMG which will see artists on ABC’s U.S. version win a record deal with the Capitol Records label. Capitol is also making full studio recordings of the performances available for download. (UMG’s Interscope Records already releases American Idol winner and contestant music.) Overseas, KI and UMG say they will work together to maximize finalists’ potential locally and internationally on all platforms. In terms of breakouts so far, the waters are relatively untested. The only Rising Star series to complete its run is the original Israeli version whose finale scored big ratings on Keshet Channel 2 in December 2013. The winner was 20-year-old Evyatar Korkus, who received his first record deal, and beat out The Gat Brothers (aka The Singing Rabbis). Brazil and Portugal, the 2nd and 3rd markets to launch, are drawing average audience shares of about 30%. In September, France’s M6 debuts its take, and the UK’s ITV will raise … Read More »
Reality Check is a Deadline feature series covering the players, programs and trends in reality television.
Israel has grown to become one of the world’s go-to spots for formats, and the trend is likely here to stay with execs believing it soon will resemble the UK and Scandinavia. Arguably jump-starting the trend was scripted drama Be Tipul, which HBO adapted as In Treatment in 2008. But the one that opened the floodgates was Hatufim, the original version of what Showtime fashioned into the Emmy-winning drama series Homeland. And in the past year, a nonscripted show has brought the territory to a whole new level. Rising Star, the interactive singing competition created by Tedy Productions and Hatufim‘s Keshet International, turned attention full-bore to the Middle Eastern nation and has helped give rise to a slew of new programming that is wending its way around the globe. Pretty impressive for a country that has only two commercial broadcasters — a situation that is leading some locals to produce for international first. But there’s also a universality to the stories and concepts that Israel is bringing to market. Producer Tal Shaked of A Cappella echoes a sentiment you hear a lot when talking with local execs. “We’re a small country in the Middle East with a lot going on around us,” she says. “We have Jews and Russians and Arabs and Ethiopians. … We have religious and nonreligious people. There’s never a dull moment. The country lives under threat – we are surrounded by enemies. And that makes people be very creative.” Here is a look at some of the key reality producer/creatives in the market today. Read More »
NBC is taking new ABC singing competition Rising Star very seriously, using heavy artillery against the debut of the new reality series this weekend. NBC has slotted an original of its strongest summer series, veteran America’s Got Talent, which airs Tuesdays, directly opposite the two-hour premiere of Rising Star from 9-11 PM on Sunday. But the Peacock didn’t stop here: NBC just announced a special daredevil stunt throughout Sunday night, which is being billed as “Show-Stopping Sunday.”
Related: Jeff Bader’s First Big Test: Fixing NBC’s Thursday Night
Both stunts, hosted by AGT judge Howie Mandel, will aim at breaking Guinness world records — for fastest jump over three moving cars and the highest shallow dive into fire. They will be chronicled in the form of interstitials that will air during American Ninja Warrior, which airs from 7-9 PM and AGT from 9-11 PM. Such stunting is vintage Jeff Bader. One of his first moves after jumping from ABC to NBC to head scheduling in 2012 was to add a third, Wednesday installment of The Voice‘s premiere week to go head-to-head against the hyped Season 2 premiere of Fox’s The X Factor that introduced new judge Britney Spears. The stunt didn’t go very well with X Factor boss Simon Cowell, who called it “a cynical, cold-hearted, unprofessional way of doing business.” But it worked in taking sizzle away from the X Factor debut. Read More »
In what sounds like a challenge to ITV’s upcoming Rising Star adaptation, the UK’s Channel 4 is launching a live multi-platform, interactive singing competition, The Singer Takes It All. Endemol UK created the format, which will air in four hourlong parts. Well-known UK TV presenter Alan Carr will host. The weekly primetime game show will see budding singers perform live on a 60-foot-long moving stage while, via a new app, judges at home will rate their performances a ‘hit’ or a ‘miss.’ The results will play out on screen seconds later. If a singer gets a hit rating, they move forward towards the Gold Zone at the front stage to continue their song. But if the majority of viewers judge them a miss, they’re booted backwards off the track — and potentially out of the show. Viewers get up to four votes for each performance with constant voting throughout. The best singer on each show will perform a second time for a shot at an unspecified cash prize. The free app is built by Chunk, incorporating new live-voting technology developed by Tectonic Interactive. No air date has been set. Read More »
Ever since ABC snapped up hot Israeli format Rising Star in November, the network has faced the challenge of adjusting the interactive talent competition — which incorporates live voting by viewers via an app — to the U.S.’ multiple time zones. With three weeks to go before Rising Star‘s June 22 premiere with Brad Paisley, Kesha and Ludacris as experts, Josh Groban as host and a surprise performance, ABC, production company Keshet DCP and executive producers Ken Warwick and Nicolle Yaron have settled on changes to the format that allow viewers in across the U.S. to vote in real time. In an interview this morning, former American Idol exec producer Warwick and Yaron (The Voice) explained how it will work.
Related: Kesha & Ludacris Join Brad Paisley As Judges On ABC’s ‘Rising Star’, Josh Groban To Host
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3.7 Million Portuguese Welcome Their Version Of ‘Rising Star’
With about a month and a half to go before ABC debuts its version of interactive singing competition format Rising Star, the international rollout continues. The Israeli show was a massive hit for Keshet last year, and its Brazilian iteration (Superstar) bowed last month to strong ratings despite a technical glitch in the debut episode. It’s Portugal’s turn now, with A Proxima Estrella bowing last night on local broadcaster TVI. The launch won primetime with a 32.7% average share, a 14.1 rating and 3.7M total viewers. More than 1.2M votes were tallied via the Rising Star app that puts the fate of the competing acts in the hands of the audience. The app has now been downloaded in Portugal more than 170,000 times, says Keshet. Performers must reach a threshold of 70% positive votes before a giant screen lifts and they are faced with the judges and studio audience, advancing to the next round. Nine performers went ahead last night (here‘s one covering Adele’s “Rolling In The Deep”). Prior to the official airing, TVI drew an audience of more than 1.5M for its test screening with an average audience share of 31% and a 16 rating. Read More »
‘Strictly Come Dancing’ Takes Top Prize At BAFTA Craft Awards
Strictly Come Dancing took the Special Award at the BAFTA Craft Awards on Sunday night in London. The trophy show that honors behind-the-scenes talent in UK TV also gave a pair of awards to gangster drama Peaky Blinders and nods to such popular shows as Downton Abbey (costume design), Doctor Who: The Day Of The Doctor (special, visual and graphic effects) and Broadchurch (original music). The full list of winners is here.
‘Rising Star’ Test Show Is Big In Portugal
Portuguese broadcaster TVI drew an audience of more than 1.5 million for its live audience test of the local version of Rising Star (A Proxima Estrella) ahead of its May 4 premiere. Sunday’s test pulled an average audience share of 31% and a 16 rating. The show, hosted by popular Portuguese reality presenter Leonor Poeiras, is based on Keshet’s interactive format that has been sold around the world. Its U.S. version bows June 22 on ABC.
Related: Will ‘Rising Star’ Rollout Cement Position As The Next Big Thing?
Scott Gregg Upped to EVP At Twentieth Century Fox Television Distribution
Scott Gregg has been promoted to EVP Sales Operations at Twentieth Century Fox Television Distribution. In his expanded position, the 18-year company veteran will continue to manage all … Read More »
Much as it did with October’s Mipcom, Israel’s Keshet International dominated the just-wrapped Mip-TV market. The savvy folks behind Rising Star energized the Croisette this week with ticking time bomb format Boom!, which closed at least a deal a day including in the U.S., France, Spain, Belgium and Hungary. And, interactive singing competition Rising Star, which had already locked down more than 25 territories since last October, is still selling. But save for Brazil, which on Sunday became the first territory outside Israel to debut a local version of Rising Star, the shows have yet to be tested abroad and Mip was abuzz with anticipation, mixed with some skepticism, about the ultimate results. Underscoring that, Brazil, which scored strong numbers, had a technical glitch that meant some home viewers had trouble entering their votes. I understand this was not the same sort of situation suffered by NBC’s Million Second Quiz last year when its app crashed during the premiere. In the case of Rising Star, I’m told there was no loss of connectivity and the live show was not affected. But, it’s a fair bet that other networks who have acquired the format are keeping a keen eye on the international rollout. Portugal is next to bow in May, and ABC debuts the format in June; it’s playing close to the vest with details.
In Cannes this week, execs up and down the Croisette praised the folks at Keshet International for their marketing acumen, enthusiasm and ability to generate creative formats. The company is often credited with putting Israel on the TV map thanks, most notably, to scripted drama Prisoners Of War, aka Homeland. The deal success of Rising Star, and now Boom!, had more than one observer marveling this week that Keshet has taught “a masterclass in marketing.” A key element of that masterclass includes bringing both formats to the Riviera sales shows hot on the heels of their respectively record-breaking debuts in Israel on Keshet Channel 2. Each format’s gimmick has also been highly touted. Rising Star‘s interactive app, incubated in Tel Aviv’s cutting-edge start-up community, lets viewers control the show’s outcome. Boom! is more of a straightforward quiz show. But the concept of contestants defusing (fake) bombs onstage, while shocking some, has made buyers sit up and take notice. Read More »
Participant Media Boards Docu About Pakistani Girl Wounded By Taliban
Participant Media has come aboard as a co-financing partner on the Parkes + MacDonald Productions documentary about Pakistani teenager Malala Yousafzai. An Inconvenient Truth’s Davis Guggenheim is directing. In 2012, student activist Yousafzai gained international recognition when she survived a brutal assassination attempt by the Taliban at age 14. Shot in the head and neck when gunmen opened fire on her school bus in Pakistan’s Swat Valley, she was targeted for speaking out on behalf of girls’ education in her community. Production starts in early July 2014, in association with Image Nation Abu Dhabi. Walter Parkes and Laurie MacDonald are producing, with a release eyed for early next year. In addition to its financial commitment, Participant will collaborate with Image Nation to launch a social action and advocacy campaign to expand the reach and impact of the film. Read More »
ABC‘s summer schedule includes the series premiere of its just-announced spinoff Bachelor In Paradise, which will debut with a two-hour episode Monday, August 4 at 8 PM. It will follow the newest cycle of another Bachelor spinoff, The Bachelorette, which bows Monday, May 19 at 9:30 PM before it moves to its regular time period Monday from 8-10 PM. They join new series The Quest, to bow Thursday, June 19 at 8 PM; Rising Star, the interactive competition show set for Sunday, June 22 at 9 PM; and new drama The Astronaut Wives Club on Thursday, July 24 at PM. ABC will air five original scripted series this summer, the most in a long time if not ever. That includes The Astronaut Wives Club, fellow freshman Black Box, which debuts in late April, as well as returning summer series Mistresses and Canadian imports Motive and Rookie Blue. Among the notable dates: Jimmy Kimmel Live: Game Night will air each night after the NBA Finals beginning with Game 1 on June 5. Here’s the network’s full schedule:
Related: Network and Cable Summer Premiere Dates
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