This is the first in a series of posts by the MIPCOM News team, summarising the highlights of an action-packed week in Cannes. More soon!


MIPCOM 2017 didn’t disappoint when it came to the level of deal-making taking place in the Palais des Festivals. Across drama, factual, kids and more, there were scores of tape sales, format deals, carriage agreements and co-productions – not to mention a few high-profile strategic alliances.

Drama from all around the world continued to sell well, with all3media International securing a host of sales for six-part thriller Liar from Two Brothers Pictures. Buyers included Germany’s SquareOne Entertainment, SVT in Sweden, DBS Satellite (Israel) and TV3 (Ireland) among others. The same company also secured sales for innovative crime thriller Rellik across Europe and Asia.

Other completed dramas to make their mark this week included RTE thriller Acceptable Risk, licensed to DR Denmark by DCD Rights. There was also a strong showing for FremantleMedia dramas Hard Sun and Picnic At Hanging Rock, acquired by Canal+ for France; and Killer By The Lake, a TF1 drama picked up by Walter Presents. Elsewhere, Dori Media Group sold romantic comedy Las Estrellas (5 Stars) to Italian broadcaster Fox Networks Group. This is the third sale of the Argentinian show, already been picked up in Israel and Indonesia.

Proof that great drama is being produced everywhere was a deal which saw Star India sells its drama series to Turkey and Latin America. TM International also had success this week with German mini-series Neanderthals, sold to a range of broadcasters including Prima TV in the Czech Republic and ABC Plus in Romania.

A big trend in drama is risk-sharing collaborations, so it was interesting to note that Gaumont signed an agreement with Studiocanal at MIPCOM to co-distribute 6 x 60 mins crime serial Nox. In another collaboration, Revolution Studios announced that it had extended its exclusive global television and digital distribution deal with Miramax. Israel’s Keshet International and Mexico’s TV Azteca are also co-developing a 60-episode Spanish language series.


Studiocanal Gaumont Photo
Studiocanal’s Beatriz Campos, Francoise Guyonnet and Vanessa Shapiro


In the movie genre, Zee Entertainment Enterprises, and Sony Pictures Television announced that they have entered into a first-pay features deal bringing a range of premium films to Indian audiences, including blockbusters such as Spider-Man: Homecoming, Blade Runner 2049 and Baby Driver. Elsewhere, Free Dolphin International licensed the disaster film Crystal Inferno to a range of leading broadcasters including TF1 France and Kanal D in Turkey.

On the scripted formats front, Beta Film kicked off the week in style by licensing NRK Norway’s cult teen drama Shame to broadcasters in Germany, Spain, Italy, France and the Netherlands. Hungary’s TV2, meanwhile, closed a scripted format deal with all3media International around the New Zealand drama Step Dave, from South Pacific Pictures.


Kelly-Lucy Roberts
South Pacific Pictures’ Kelly Martin (left) with all3media International’s Lucy Roberts.


Japan’s Nippon TV deal continued a run of success with the format for Mother, by licensing it to Korea’s CJ E&M. Also out of Japan, producer Kansai TV licensed the format for My Dangerous Wife to Turkish producer MF Yapim; and TV Asahi did a deal with China’s Radiant Pictures for A Family Goes Job Hunting.


Nippon TV/CJ E&M
CJ E&M’s Tony Kim (left) and Jang Ho Seo; with Nippon TV’s Keisuke Miyata


Factual producers and distributors also racked up landmark sales this week. Blue Ant International pre-sold a package of premium 4K natural-history content to National Geographic while BBC Worldwide agreed a deal with Tencent in China for Blue Planet II. These was also good news for A+E Networks which revealed that it is joining forces with China Central Television (CCTV) and China International Television Corporation to co-produce The Silk Road – Reborn.

Chinese Deal BBC
James Honeyborne, executive producer for Blue Planet II, Tencent’s Lexian Zhu, BBCWW’s David Weiland and Julian Hector of the BBC Studios’ Natural History Unit


Still in factual, UK-based producer Talesmith was commissioned by Smithsonian Channel and Zee Entertainment Enterprises to produce Life Of Earth: From Space and Life of Earth: The Age Of Humans. There was also news of a co-pro involving S4C Wales, TG4 Ireland and JTV Korea, which came together with producer Rondo Media to produce The Wall, a series that will distributed by Cineflix Rights.

In terms of big package deals, Ovation acquired 37 hours of programming from Sky Vision while Authentic sold 60 hours package of wildlife and history to Prima TV – as well as making sales to A&E Germany and Spain. At the lighter end of the factual genre, Cineflix Rights licensed Property Brothers to Sweden and Italy and Flipping Virgins to LatAm and Germany. TCB Media, meanwhile, announced presales for Elizabeth and The Private Lives Of Monarchs to SBS in Australia.

In other factual news: Pernel Media licensed 20 years On Death Row to UKTV channel Really; Quintus Media secured deals in Poland with content from indie Maximus Films; Prime Entertainment Group sold a raft of titles to Cine Sony Italia and AXN Japan; Sideways Film sold Body Language Decoded to UR in Sweden and YES in Israel; and TAC Studios licensed World Wide Nate: African Adventures to Urban Movie Channel in the US. Distributor Magnify Media also had a good week, pick up the job of representing content from CNN Vision.

Non-scripted formats continue to be a big part of the business done at MIPCOM, with a prime example being a co-development deal between Zig Zag Productions and 3C Media of China for physical-challenge format Ancient Games. Armoza Formats had a good market, licensing The Final Four to Context Media for New Zealand and Pan-Asia and organ donor format Back To Life to Polish producer Rochstar.


Pingu Breakfast Screening- Speakers + Human Pingu Actor
3C Media’s Xichen Liu (left) and Zig Zag’s Danny Fenton


There was also a strong showing for ITV Studios’ hit format Love Island, commissioned in Sweden by TV4 and Nine Network Australia. Talpa licensed the format for The Next Boy/Girl band to Katana in Thailand while Lineup Industries sold Emergency Call to Seven Network Australia and Germany’s Vox.

There were also signs that digital is becoming significant for non-scripted formats. The Story Lab and independent studio Youngest Media, for example, licensed dating format Date Or Dump to digital platform UNILAD. Another novel deal saw Singapore’s Bomanbridge Media and the UK’s Passion Distribution enter agreements with GamingZone to represent eSports reality format Gamerz.

Alongside specific show deals, the week was heavy with strategic alliances of all shapes and sizes. NBC and Discovery unveiled content partnerships with mobile platform Snapchat while AMC Networks International Iberia announced it was going into business with youth media brand Vice, Vice Media is also expanding into Africa following a JV with Econet Media. IM Global Television, meanwhile, signed JV agreements with Newen of France Ukrainian media group Film.UA.



Top photo © Picnic At Hanging Rock / FremantleMedia Facebook Page

About Author

Julian Newby is editor in chief of MIP Publications, namely the MIPTV/MIPCOM Previews, daily News magazines and supplements. He is also co-founder of Boutique Editions, a UK-based publishing and design house providing products and services for the international film, TV and creative communities.

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