When it comes to drawing a crowd at MIPCOM and MIPTV, the Fresh TV sessions from The Wit’s Virginia Mouseler never fail. In today’s session, she focused on brand new TV formats in 2015 from around the world, with her usual blend of trends and quirky one-offs.
“This autumn, producers are searching for fresh air: they want to offer viewers something with oxygen… and also wacky, physical shows,” she said. The shows follow, with their distributors in brackets.
This tasks 14 ordinary people with disappearing from society: going on the run while a team of 30 investigators try to hunt them down. It debuted in the UK in September 2015.
Monte Bianco (Zodiak Rights)
This will debut in Italy in November, and is the first reality-TV show based on mountain climbing. Seven celebrities team up with experienced mountaineers to climb Mont Blanc, surviving an elimination race that will see only one reach the summit.
Ultimate Expedition (Rabbit Film)
This show, which will make its debut in early 2016 in Finland, is similar: eight celebrities climbing a 6,000m high mountain, with one contestant sent back to base camp every episode. Again, only one will reach the summit.
Blind to the Top (LineUp Industries)
Another mountain, but fewer celebrities. Instead here there is a team or blind or partially-sighted participants trying to climb Kilimanjaro, attached to professional mountain guides. Two celebrities go along too, blindfolded. It will be broadcast from November in the Netherlands.
6 Degrees of Separation (Mexiko Media)
Airing from September in Sweden, this sends two comedians to the most remote places on Earth, each receiving a video message from a celebrity. They have to find a link from the people who they meet to the celebrity in just one week, by travelling the world.
DNA Detectives (Zodiak Rights)
Another trip to the meaning of life, which debuts in New Zealand in October. 12 celebrities are told the stories revealed by their DNA, discovering previously unknown cultural roots and genetic links. They then fly off to meet long-lost relatives. One even finds a connection to Elvis Presley, and is suitably (all) shook up.
The Virgins (Armoza Formats)
Due to air in 2016 in Israel, this sees three people marked by a major trauma, handicap or challenging condition experience a life-changing “first time” and share their emotions. Riding a bike, flying in a hot-air balloon, and getting a dog were among the experiences.
My Last Time (Talpa Global)
Already airing in the Netherlands, this follows terminally-ill people during the last weeks of their lives, living their last days to the fullest and celebrating while they can. The show follows their stories through their last messages to their families, and then their funerals.
Born On (DRG)
A factual entertainment show that aired from September in Norway, following the stories of three people born on the same day through to the present: one is a celebrity and the other two are ordinary people “with their own extraordinary life stories to tell”. The Prime Minister of Norway took part in one episode.
A Real Swedish Farmer (DRG)
Old Swedish farmers with no heirs to take over teach eight immigrants everything they know about farming, and the best one each episode gets to take the farm over for real at the end of one month: “a new life as a Swedish farmer”.
The Day The Cash Came (Red Arrow International)
Originally commissioned by the BBC, this involves an anonymous benefactor gifting a family living below the poverty line one year’s salary, which they have to work out how to use over three months, spending it as they please – with guidance from an expert. “Will they blow the lot?”
Undressed (Zodiak Rights)
“The new dating show where anything can happen”. Two complete strangers meet for the first time in a darkened bedroom, have to undress one another, and then have 30 minutes to get to know each other, with a screen showing instructions encouraging “physical and emotional interaction”. It debuts in Italy in January 2016.
Kiss Bang Love (Red Arrow International)
One singleton has to kiss 15 single guys or girls blindfolded. They choose the five best kisses then go in for a second kiss without the blindfold. Then they select two for the next stage: spending the night with each other.
Desperate Last Resort (Fujisankei Comm. Intl)
Women with “personality issues” fight for a cash prize on a deserted island, conducting sabotage missions to see off their rivals. Said issues including “ultra clean freak” and “a woman who’s depended on men” according to the sizzle reel. Only one escapes the island to win.
Friends For Fortune (Talpa Global)
A Dutch format where two teams of friends compete in funny and embarrassing games in a studio. For example, getting half their body spray-tanned, smashing fruit on their tummies, passing egg yolks mouth-to-mouth, and convincing the audience to take off their underwear.
The Eureka Moment (FremantleMedia)
Two couples go head to head testing their scientific knowledge, facing dangerous tasks and winning dream holidays. From trying to land a light aircraft to floating in anti-gravity – with the show’s host trying everything out themselves. Culminating in a dangle-over-a-gunge-tank head-to-head.
Modern Art vs Rough Amateur Art (Fujisankei Comm. Intl)
Contestants compare two artworks: one from a contemporary artist and one by an amateur. Can they tell the difference? “One is worth over $10,000, and the other was painted in three minutes by a complete amateur!”
Can’t Touch This (SPTI)
A game-show involving physical challenges where, yes, the contestants have to touch things. “The more you touch, the more you win”. It’s the new Total Wipeout, by the looks of it.
The Wacky Old Games (Televisa / La Competencia)
Old, popular and crazy games from traditions around the world, with an emphasis on the ‘crazy’. One appears to involve the contestant running along an obstacle-course dressed as a giant, round cheese.
Fast Cash (ESG)
A new quiz show with “no limit to how much money you can win… you just have to be faster than everyone else”. Contestants play against the audience in a game of associative questions, where everything is based on speed. The money comes from a bank of cash machines, which shut down one-by-one if the audience beats the contestants to correct answers.
Based on a popular mobile app, contestants have to compete against the audience to answer trivia questions. They play eight battles against a different person playing from home, and whoever wins the battle wins the money. The categories are made available in the app during the week leading up to the episode, so people can practise.
Who’s On Top? (Keshet International)
An Israeli format where celebrity contestants are shot up and down in lifts while answering questions. They are trying to climb towards the prize, five floors up. “Make one mistake, and what goes up comes all the way down…”
Lubdub (Secuoya Intl)
A talent-show format from Spain where there are no votes, but instead the audience and judges are wired up with neuroscience kit, measuring their emotional responses to the contestants. Who, by the way, are talented children, nominated by their mothers.
Dance Dance Dance (Talpa Global)
Celebrities are paired up with family members to re-enact the original choreography of famous music videos and film scenes, from Michael Jackson and Beyoncé to Dirty Dancing, with technology ensuring they look like the original videos.