MIPFormats is just around the corner! The MIPFormats Preview magazine asked a cross-section of format buyers from all around the globe to share their shopping secrets. What formats do they want? There are as many answers to this question, as there are buyers and commissioners. Some want upbeat storytelling and shiny floors; others want authenticity and emotional triggers. Most want interactivity and multiplatform appeal — and everybody, of course, wants the next big thing. Discover their answers:


Catherine Catton, senior commissioning editor, UKTV (UK)

“For Dave, we’re looking for unscripted formats for 20.00, which can be either hours or half hours. We’ve had huge success with Storage Hunters UK (watch the video below), so we’re interested in fast-paced, entertainment-led formats that will skew towards a male audience. Dave is the home of witty banter, so a sense of humour is essential. Top-name talent is also critical, as are larger-than-life characters. For Watch, we’re keen to develop factual-entertainment formats for a predominantly upmarket, 35-plus female-skewing audience. These need to be able to sit at the heart of peak, have scale and be rooted in territories that are compelling for that audience. It’s also key they do not alienate a male audience, but deliver shared viewing. We are not looking for features ideas, but rather entertainment-driven formats that deliver a twist.”


[youtube] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vuJVYU99l88[/youtube]


Janet Frawley, head of formats, RTE Television (Ireland)

As a national broadcaster, our needs are very varied. I look at what formats our domestic channel controllers want, as those will have a higher chance of getting an Irish series and therefore have a ratings story to sell to international territories. But I’ll look at everything at comes my way to see if we have the right home for it. For RTE One, we are currently looking for weekday, pre-watershed formats that will play between 19.00-21.00, family factual entertainment that will play well at 18.30 and popular factual formats.”


[youtube] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_AmKnXdUYCQ[/youtube]


Anette Romer, head of acquisitions and formats, TV 2 (Denmark)

“For weekday primetime, we need strong factual entertainment and modern storytelling tailored to the interests of a modern family. For weekends, the focus is on high-concept, family-oriented entertainment programming and big entertainment shows, as well as big-scale, shiny-floor formats for Friday evenings. We are also looking for edgy, male-skewing shows for TV 2 Zulu (watch the channel’s trailer below), easy-going feel-good entertainment for TV 2 Charlie, strong lifestyle titles characterised by passion and jeopardy for TV 2 Fri, and sports-related entertainment for TV 2 Sports.”




Cathrine Wiernik, director of programmes for acquisitions and formats, local production and drama, TV4 Group (Sweden)

“Everything from shiny-floor entertainment shows to factual content to big event formats. When I go to MIPTV, I go with a very open mind. I’ll look at anything in any category, as long as it’s good. But it’s the big, break-through, must-see formats — shows that will give us a 28%-30% share in prime — that are top of my wish list. These days, when we buy a format directly, rather than co-develop a concept with local partners, it’s got to be really big and we’ve got to feel that we really, really have to have it.”




Hwang Jin Woo, head of formats, senior manager, content development team, CJ E&M (Korea)

“Formats that possesses empathic ideas, exceptional creativity, strong track records and good sponsorship values. Our previous channel-defining formats include Got Talent, Bet On Your Baby, The Voice, Saturday Night Live, Masterchef, Top Gear, The Phone, Next Top Models and Project Runway. With successful localisation, CJ E&M has been setting new standards with formats in Korea. Korean viewers are probably the most dynamic in the world. Their tastes seem to change every six months, which means keeping returning series on air is an extremely difficult process. It’s one of the reasons why our buyers look for formats that possess strong track records internally and externally. Single episode pilot formats or paper formats are not easy to get commissioned.”




These executives will be at MIPFormats, the not-to-be-missed showcase for the global TV formats community – more info here! And read more exclusive interviews in the MIPFormats Preview magazine, online soon.

Top photo via CJ E&M


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