Formats – no longer the commodity of only a few

I’ll continue the series on how to create a successful tv format tomorrow (since I KNOW y’all can’t wait…, right? πŸ™‚ but in the meanwhile I thought I’d point out something quite interesting.

Back in the days – and we’re talking early 2000s now – formats could come from the US, the UK or Holland (thanks to Endemol of course). Formats from any other part of the globe were few and far between, and channels and producers were reluctant to pick up new formats from sources they did not know. An age-old truth that – channels really really want to have the next big thing that no one has seen before, be groundbreaking and interesting. They just want to see the ratings of the format first.. πŸ™‚

Today this has all changed, a fact that gives hope to format developers like me from fringe countries like Finland. The world IS smaller, the format world decidedly so. At this years C21/FRAPA Format Awards the awards went all over the world!

The best game show format went to The Encounter (Koz in Turkish), a format from Sera Film in Turkey. It is based on a combination between drama and game show, where two contestants are thrown into a fictional mafia world and have to manage a quiz show there to get away with a shitload of cash.

The best factual entertainment format went to Born to be wild, from Broadcasters, the Finnish subsidiary of Zodiak Television. That one is about getting old people (over 70 at least) to form a choir and sing true rock’n’roll. Hats off to Saku for bringing this format forth!

And of course, the scripted format award went to Caracol TV from Colombia for their scripted format about drug-running. Since telenovelas came to the fore, South America has really been up there when it comes to making exportable scripted formats.

What I’m saying is that the format world is now wide open. A good format can come from anywhere, and everyone is prepared for that. Without further ado, I will now go and create a great format. Be well! πŸ™‚

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