From Singapore to the world! The Singapore Pavilion is back as part of this year’s Asia TV Forum & Market (ATF), the region’s leading entertainment content market, presenting over 1,170 hours of quality content from Singapore and Asia produced by local showrunners.
Over 190 titles across multiple genres take centre stage, connecting local talent to global audiences. Inspire and be inspired. nd us at Asia TV Forum & Market Booths F06 and H08, at the entrance of the market oor.
Deep End A Banquet for Hungry Ghosts Love Punch Third Rail Tropic Tales Love at First Bite This Land is Mine The Great Wall with Ash Dykes 123 Number Squad Mr Midnight www.imda.gov.sg/SMF2022
CELEBRATING ASIA'S STORIES WITH THE WORLD S A S S I A 'S D W E WO R L IT H THHE T 24 NOV 11DEC 2022 ATF Front Cover Artwork 2 165x245mm CMYK Op 2.ai 1 09/11/2022 8:51 PM Brought to you by THE 2022 OFFICIAL + ATF 2021 hybrid edition preview ATF 2022 DAY three 9DEC
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CONTENTS 06 18 01 08 IT’S NOT ALL WORK EXCLUSIVES NETWORKING GALLERY: PARTY CENTRAL 22 50 30 MARKET CONFERENCE EXISTING IPs 12 INDEVELOPMENT An Event of Hosted by EDITORIAL & PRODUCTION TEAM EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Lulu Mendoza WRITERS Dinesh Pasrasurum, Priscilla Hendriks, Suhaimi Sainy, Adrian Kuek, Selina Tan CONFERENCE WRITERS Lim Jun Xi, Marcus Goh DESIGNER Shellen Teh PHOTOGRAPHY Artgraphy PROJECT MANAGEMENT GROUP PROJECT DIRECTOR Yeow Hui Leng SENIOR PROJECT MANAGER Joyce Chua PROJECT COORDINATOR Jocelyn Phng BUYERS RELATIONSHIP EXECUTIVE Samantha Lee RELATIONSHIP COORDINATOR Bridget Tong EXHIBITORS & PARTICIPANTS SENIOR ACCOUNT MANAGER Phua Meenyi ATF CONFERENCE EXECUTIVE PRODUCER Lulu Mendoza ASSISTANT CONFERENCE PRODUCER Leris Leong MARKETING MARKETING DIRECTOR Teo Hui Hiang MARKETING MANAGER Candy Cheah MARKETING EXECUTIVE Priscilla Hendriks DIGITAL ASSISTANT MANAGER Aye Min Thu DIGITAL EXECUTIVE Liew Bi Liang OPERATIONS OPERATIONS DIRECTOR Karen Leong OPERATIONS MANAGER Chua Lai Soon SENIOR OPERATIONS EXECUTIVE Karen Liew Co-located Somehow, attendees to the first full-on ATF after the pandemic, could not help themselves but to take timeout to have a bit of fun between the gruelling expectations of work. Post-pandemic mindsets have allowed us to be kinder to ourselves. It’s always a pleasure to have coffee with old acquaintances, or newfound friends.
SEE YOU @ ATF 2023 6 TO 8 DECEMBER 2023 MARINA BAY SANDS, SINGAPORE www.asiatvforum.com
IT’S NOT ALL WORK
One couldn’t help but smile as Smurfette took her walk down the aisle, incredibly joyful to meet real people again! And of course, why would anyone refuse a chance to strike a pose, or to experience that little glass of joy every now and then. ATF — bringing people back together again!
06 + ATF 2021 hybrid edition preview ATF 2022 DAY three 9DEC TAIWAN CONTENT SHOWCASE & AFTERNOON TEA SINGAPORE HOUR K-FORMATS SHOWCASE: NETWORKING RECEPTION JAPAN NETWORKING LUNCH NETWORKING @ ATF 2022 Brought to you by Taiwan Creative Content Agency (TAICCA) Brought to you by IMDA Brought to you by Korea Creative Content Agency (KOCCA) Brought to you by Korea Creative Content Agency (KOCCA) Out & about: ATF sees a bevy of celebrities return to its grounds this December (Top) Love To Be Here! (Below) Nothing like a huddle for fascinating chinwags! (L-R) Nothing beats face-to-face!; It’s Been So Long Since We Last Met!; Ahhh yes… live on various stages across ATF was a welcoming sign Connecting at the Right Time, Right Place, Right Hour
WHAT LIES BEHIND THE JAPANESE & KOREAN FORMAT SHOWCASES?
BY TRANG NGUYEN, SENIOR RESEARCHER, K7 MEDIA
The success of many high-profile Asian formats over the past few years has cemented Asia as a hub for creative new unscripted ideas. South Korea, which has received most of the buzz recently, remained in the top four biggest exporters along with the UK, the US, and the Netherlands. Whereas Japan made an impressive comeback with the number of new adaptations of Japanese formats more than doubling year-on-year (K7 Media’s Tracking the Giants 2021).
Nowadays, South Korean, and Japanese formats are not only made for the domestic audience but also for a wider market globally. Formats that fit international trends have a bigger chance for export, but as we’ve seen how The Masked Singer led the craze for guessing games, buyers are eyeing closely every latest idea from these two countries. Running on the 7th and 8th December respectively, the Fresh Format from Japan and K-Formats Showcase sessions were some of the most anticipated at ATF. But beyond just collections presented by distributors, these carefully picked titles reflect how the two countries have been exploring new twists and directions while retaining their positions as Asian superpowers of the format space.
OLD & NEW DIRECTIONS IN GUESSING GAMES
My Boyfriend is Better from CJ ENM proves that musical guessing formats are still going
strong in Asia. Launched earlier this year, the format sees girls betting on their boyfriends’ singing abilities. It places a fun and dynamic twist of love and money on top of the familiar guessing game, expected to be the next hit from CJ ENM after its bestselling I Can See Your Voice
While that CJ ENM show has a familiar musical focus, Kansai TV’s Matching House and Something Special’s You Picked the Wrong are examples of how the guessing mechanism has now expanded to other genres. The former is a dating show which matches people based on their homes, whilst the latter sees a contestant picking one of 10 opponents for a physical challenge without knowing their opponent’s hidden abilities. DITURN’s paper format Two Doors also puts players in a fight-or-flight dilemma and if they choose to fight, then they have to guess which of the two rooms in front of them is easiest to escape from within 89 seconds. Around the market for a while, but remaining relevant is MBC’s Mystery Ranking Show 1,2,3!, tapping into the same notion of whether our prejudices and judgements are valid.
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MEET US AT BOOTH NO. B20 7-9 DECEMBER MARINA BAY SANDS
IN CELEBRATION OF THE ASIAN LOVE FOR COOKING
Moving away from the topical guessing game, it’s worth shedding light on the latest food formats from Japan, as one third of the fresh Japanese formats introduced come under the cooking genre. YTV, whose Rolling Kitchen has been adapted in Mongolia and Brazil, brought to the market Uprising Kitchen, a gamified approach to the classic debate – whether the chef or the quality of ingredients is more important in cooking. In Discover Japan in Your Fridge, ABC TV shows off Japanese cuisine created using ingredients found in the fridges of random households elsewhere in the world. On the same Chefs Without Borders theme, The First Recipe from TV Tokyo challenges star chefs to cast their spells on unknown ingredients that they have never seen before.
Cooking is an integral part of Asian life and culture and has always been a staple of Asian TV. With both international cooking franchises and home-grown shows riding high in Asia, ATF is a perfect platform to promote cooking formats. It would be no surprise if these Japanese titles, with their exciting take on classic culinary skills, soon land deals with buyers from the region.
MORE COMEDIC, WACKY JAPANESE FORMATS
We’re living in a world in which the unexpected can happen anytime, and sometimes last much longer than expected - think about the pandemic. To get through hard times, it’s important to remain positive and remember to laugh. That’s why formats that are suitable for family viewing and likely to bring us a good chuckle always have a place on television.
Japan, with the likes of Masquerade, Silent Library and LOL, has built up its reputation
for ‘wacky’ but effective approaches to the genre. This year, ATF welcomed the country’s freshest comedic titles - from Fuji TV’s travelmeet-prank show Prank Journey to Yoshimoto Kyogyo’s latest iteration of the no-laughing trend with You Laugh You Lose, Chukyo TV’s investigative We Can Answer Your Question!, TBS’ Totally Outnumbered which sees a professional trying to beat a group of ordinary people in a limited time, and TV Asahi’s Sneak n Shop featuring players sneaking into a large electronics store and carrying the appliances to the checkout while avoiding drone cameras.
All of these amusing formats are expected to meet the appetite of not only Asian buyers who share the same passion for comedy, but also Western participants at the event who are looking to adapt the next surprisingly ‘out there’ Japanese formats.
CHOIR SINGING – WILL IT BE THE NEXT BIG THING?
From singing guessing games to idol survival auditions, Korea has been leading music unscripted trends in Asia. With two Korean broadcasters both bringing their own choir competitions to the Showcase, it’s time
to keep an eye on this emerging theme in the music genre. Sing for Gold from SBS is a competition in which K-pop stars pick the best national choir for an international contest, while Singing Seniors from SLL is an experiment in harmony with no eliminations, winners, or losers – just veteran actors singing their hearts out in a choir.
Meanwhile, launched on SBS (Korea) in October, Pet Me Pick Me from FormatEast sees four women each date a man chosen by none other than their pets! It’s a prime example of the ‘Dating by Committee’ trend that is everywhere at the moment, showing how modern romance values the expert consultant – regardless of whether it’s friends, family members, a kid, or even a dog or cat...
Another rising trend in global unscripted is the surge of physical adventure shows, maybe as compensation for the years trapped indoors that we’d all rather forget. In this context, Survival Hunt from Something Special, debuted on Kakao earlier this year, is expected to make a big splash, especially including as it does the spooky reality element inspired by Squid Game
Finally, Kakao’s Nomovie Series is an innovative cross-platform format that attempts to exclude all the boring parts of traditional drama and films. It has proved to be a huge success locally with accumulative number of over 131 million views as of November 2022!
We are coming to 2023 with new trends and directions in unscripted formats. What will come out of these showcases as the next biggest star? Time will tell. But one thing we can be sure is that South Korea and Japan will remain regional innovative hubs and big inspirations for format creators from other countries across Asia and beyond.
All of these formats were featured in FRESH FORMAT FROM JAPAN and K-FORMATS SHOWCASE sessions.
For more info, contact Michelle Lin firstname.lastname@example.org
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IN-DEVELOPMENT ATF FORMATS PITCH 2022 WINNER
The ATF Formats Pitch is an annual hunt for the best of Asia’s new and original unscripted formats. This year’s finalists were judged by a panel of format television veterans, namely: Park Wonwoo, CEO & Chief Creator at DITURN; Hwang Jin-woo, Founder & President of Something Special; Justin Deimen, President of 108 Media.
The six finalists presented their pitches in myriad ways. Some were systematic and technical in their execution, while others were visibly passionate and fluid. They came from all over Asia — Turkey’s Şahin Öner with Extract, a trivia gameshow where contestants escaped debt; Singapore’s Sabrina Poon with Concrete Concepts, an architectural design competition format; Singapore’s Esther Tan with Mother Knows Best, a hilarious dating gameshow with matriarchal oversight; Philippines’ Christian Gamboa with The Fairest Gameshow Ever! that equalised the playing field with contestant specific challenges; Japan’s Takeru Kato with The Loyal Followers, where contestants stranded overseas got home with just the help of their social media followers.
Amidst fierce competition, the prize of S$3,500 was taken home by the triumphant Christian with The Fairest Gameshow Ever!
This year’s pitches on stage had favourites; it was such a breath of fresh air to finally step onto a stage to pitch to judges IRL
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After a 25-min deliberation, judges for the ATF Formats Pitch picked a surprising winner — the pitch itself may be as important as the concept.
ATF x WARNER BROS. DISCOVERY THAI DRAMA PITCH 2022
Five stories were presented behind closed doors at the ATF x Warner Bros. Discovery Thai Drama Pitch 2022. The candidates came well-prepared with their presentations, and also to answer the questions the panel of judges fired at them.
Most of the dramas pitched contained some suspense and thriller, and the ideas were definitely unique. Some of the stories were also based on real life experiences, and it was a heartwarming moment for all in the room, to say the least.
The panel of presiding judges provided fantastic feedback and gave something for each of the candidates to think about. In the end, it was ‘Hello Monday’ that took home the award. It is a coming-ofage drama with some comedy injected, and tells the story of three different characters; a late-20 immature woman, a nerdy gay student and a reformed ex-hooligan trapped in a mysterious unending time loop during a Songkran holiday festival, which has turned their festive fun time into a nightmare.
ATF IP ACCELERATOR PICKS A WINNER
“I am delighted to award the ATF IP Accelerator award to the team behind the very important and groundbreaking TV drama ‘O’,” said Rod Smith, Head of Film & TV at 108 Media. “Yan Yan and the team at Aggregate Pictures have developed a powerful and ground-breaking TV drama, which is not only very important and relevant, but also incredibly creative in merging a very strong, and long overdue, message, with wonderful creative writing and entertaining stories. 108 Media stands proudly alongside this series and its message.” Congratulations!
ATF was proud to host the inaugural ATF x Warner Bros. Discovery Thai Drama Pitch, where Thai studios made it to the finals, beating out all other entrants. Decision makers from Warner Bros. Discovery took time out to make the difficult decision, choosing a winner – Ratchapoom Boonbunchachoke for his project, Hello Monday. Congratulations!
IN-DEVELOPMENT ON THE CUSP OF A NEW FILMMAKING ERA
This year, the ATF Pitch Pit welcomed a new round of finalists. These self-made script writers enthusiastically pitched their ideas and narratives for one of the two formats – mini web-series or movies.
According to panel judge, Guo Jingyu, Executive Chairman & Group CEO of G.H.Y Culture & Media, 2022’s pitches set themselves apart from previous years with an exceptionally high level of creativity and imagination. Contestants pitched scripts spanning a range of literary genres and sub-genres, such as Xianxia, fantasy and science fiction with time travel elements.
Coming off the back of the Covid-19 pandemic, it is abundantly clear that the entertainment landscape has changed: While theatrical entertainment numbers slid, the trend toward digital entertainment was accelerated as consumers have grown to rely on digital (video-on-demand, streaming video, and electronic sell through) sources for entertainment.
To capture the younger, mobile-first demographic, GHY has edged out the competition by producing and releasing highquality mobile-friendly content.
“The traditional television era is soon fading into oblivion, giving way to streaming and Internet TV. From docuseries to historical dramas and investigative shows, web films and miniseries are wonderful, diverse formats that parallel the eclecticism of literature,” says Guo.
The transition from novellas to screenplays is very often not a smooth one. However, while Guo affirms that scriptwriting and producing techniques by fledgling filmmakers require refining, there is immense potential for the creators to grow under the guidance of experienced directors and have their works published for screen.
“It is difficult to anticipate what genres might be in vogue in the future. Young filmmakers still love delving into timeless themes like Xianxia, which was born 2,000 years ago, and time-travel, which came about at least 1,000 years ago. The common denominator among all successful works is superb delivery, marked by tightly written scripts, clever plots and witty dialogue,” Guo expounds.
Moving into 2023, GHY will be releasing a number of works that derive inspiration from Singapore’s history, such as Sisterhood, which features Samsui Women and Nanyang Transport Volunteers, a compelling heroic war drama.
Winners presented works from the Southeast Asian horror and fantasy genres. While GHY has yet to distribute any space films, they have released the acclaimed urban drama Miss Tanya, a series about a 100-year-old Nonya who is resurrected after a scientific experiment gone wrong.
The distinguished panel of judges at the ATF Chinese Pitch were impressed with the scripts this year ––all part of a fitting comeback to normalcy and beyond
Ong Fong Ling from Malaysia, faces judge Guo Jingyu, Executive Chairman & Group CEO of G.H.Y Culture & Media with her movie project
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The 2022 panel of judges (L—R) Ho Hee Ann, Director of Content Development of G.H.Y Culture & Media; Guo Jingyu, Executive Chairman & Group CEO of G.H.Y Culture & Media; Boris Boo, Director of Content Development, G.H.Y Culture & Media
GALLERY: PARTY CENTRAL
ATF nailed it again this year – good job and thanks for throwing such a great gathering!
Let the celebrations begin!
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Good times are even better when surrounded by the best people.
There’s nothing like a good gathering to brighten up the start of a work week.
We’re ready to help you celebrate in a way that will make all of us smile!
GALLERY: PARTY CENTRAL
ATF says “Thank you” to all who have been such great supporters over 2 decades of bringing Asia to the world.
Putting up with shenanigans: ATF is the perfect time to make new friends, relax and have a great time… errr… after you sell enough…
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SPAIN CHARMS ITS WAY INTO ASIA
Antonio Garcia Rebollar, Economic & Trade Counsellor at the Spanish Embassy in Singapore gave some insights on how important the content industry has been to Spain. Despite the pandemic, Spain’s Fiction content alone reaped revenues of 4.6billion Euros and employed close to 20,000 people. Underscoring the importance of the media industry to the economy, the Spanish government has also committed to investing 1.6billion Euros in the next three years to support talent and capacity building, tax incentives for foreign producers and flexible regulations for the media industry.
Tom Gennari, CEO of BB Media shared some success stories of Spanish content in Asia. The well known Money Heist series, now being adapted in Korean, sits at the Top 10 in 83 countries, of which 25 are in Asia. A spanish SciFi Action series, Welcome to Eden is also top 10 in 82 countries, of which 16 are in Asia. More impressively, the series is number one in 8 Asian countries, quite a feat given the genre. Tom shared that Spanish titles are available in 459 different platforms throughout Asia with a total of 2,249 movies and 148 series. Of the genres, 31% of Spanish content are of the drama genre with comedy a close second at 29%. Korea, Japan and Taiwan have the most extensive library of Spanish content with over 1,800 titles available in each territory.
Keen to continue the momentum of success, Spain hosted the “Buying Spain 2022” closed door networking featuring 7 Spanish companies, RTVA, Onza Distribution, Atresmedia, Movistar Plus+ International, Deaplaneta Kids & Family, Mediterraneo Mediaset Espana Group and The Mediapro Studio. The full house session saw close to 50 buyers in attendance.
Tom Gennari, CEO, BB Media, led a successful session at ATF’s breakfast timeslot, attracting a high number of Asian buyers, who came to learn more about the product offerings of some of the top companies from Spain: Atresmedia; Deaplaneta Kids & Family; Mediterraneo Mediaset España Group; Movistar Plus+ International; ONZA Distribution; RTVE; The Mediapro Studio
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Malchiodi Channels and
See us at ATF / fremantlescreenings.com
“THE MURDOCHS – EMPIRE OF INFLUENCE IS REAL-LIFE ‘SUCCESSION’ — AND NO LESS DRAMATIC” - WASHINGTON POST
A Winning Formula: Technology and Co-production
Two giants in their local markets have directed their gaze to Southeast Asia. Kazufumi Nagasawa, Chief Content Officer at Hulu Japan and Kelvin Yau, Head of Southeast Asia at iQiYi International, recognised the potential of bringing IP from their markets into Southeast Asia, as well as opening up collaborations with Southeast Asian partners to produce local content that could propagate worldwide.
Kelvin believes that iQiYi stands out with its engineeringoriented approach to show business. iQiYi focuses resources on improving unconventional technology to push the envelope on production quality and methods,
such as extended reality backgrounds and AI dubbing. Kelvin emphasized the importance of AI dubbing in the Southeast Asian market, where many different languages and cultures can make local audience more difficult to engage than in China.
Kazufumi shared a similar take with more cross-cultural collaboration. He dreams of elevating Japanese IP by combining elements from other countries and creating shows that both Japanese and international audiences enjoy. In making such shows, balancing each collaborator’s stakes and interests can be difficult, but often leads to rewarding developments in production.
AVOD vs SVOD: Which Will Win the Battle in Indonesia?
The million dollar question on everyone’s mind is this – AVOD or SVOD? “Nobody knows. But in Indonesia, we believe it has to be both,” was the analysis of Sutanto Hartono, CEO of SCM & Vidio.
“What we do not know is the percentage [of AVOD and SVOD in the future],” said Sutanto, in a session moderated by Tom Gennari, CEO, BB Media. While AVOD in territories like the US translates into cheaper subscription packages with advertising support, in Indonesia, AVOD is completely free. So only time will tell what the balance between AVOD and SVOD will be.
With the experience gained from having over 60 million viewers, Sutanto has observed that the subscription habit is not well-formed in Indonesia. “Indonesians are not used to subscribing. We need to educate them with good content,” he said.
“Sport is time-sensitive content, and people are willing to pay more [for that] than for less time-sensitive content, like dramas.” Acquiring the 2022 World Cup rights has borne fruit, and they have crossed the 5 million subscriber mark as a result.
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Sutanto Hartono CEO SCM & Vidio
Kelvin Yau, Head of Southeast Asia, iQiYi International ; Kazufumi Nagasawa, Chief Content Officer, Hulu Japan; Yeo Kok Siew, Partner Solutions Lead, Creators, APAC, Meta
“We’re probably lying slightly,” confessed Ella Umansky, Vice President of Format Acquisitions, ITV Studios, when asked about what people in acquisitions say they are looking for in new formats. “What we really want is something with a universal core.”
She spoke at a session on IP acquisitions, moderated by Rahul Raman, VP, Sales & Global Partnerships, 108 Media. Ella explained that “to make something globally accessible, it’s going to need something that we can all relate to – love, competition, talent. But we need it dressed up differently, to have a different approach to it.”
Fenton Bailey, Co-Founder / Executive Producer, World of Wonder, who produced RuPaul’s Drag Race, observed that when adapting that format to different territories, “it takes time to land” and that one “needs to understand cultural sensitivities.”
Audiences also play a part, noted Sanmesh Thakur, Executive Vice President & Territory Head, APAC, ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Ltd. For the Survivor format, they had to cater to both SVOD and linear audiences with a traditional one-hour episode for linear audiences, and behind-the-scenes quarrels and sensational content for SVOD audiences.
Truths and Lies in IP Acquisitions
The Secrets of Winning Formats Outside Asia
Four key trends can be seen in recent formats from outside of Asia, shared Avril Blondelot, Head of Content Insight, Glance Médiamétrie. So what lessons can be learnt from casting one’s gaze afar?
Formats that include a pranking element are becoming more popular, as well as those with a mentoring element. “[Formats with] a competitive element continues to drive viewership in many territories,” she revealed, “because real-life competition creates authenticity.” Finally, formats are upsizing, as they get produced on larger scale.
12 new formats from outside Asia were showcased in the session, including prank shows Snake in the Grass from the United States, The Impostors from Quebec, and Ramez Movie Star from United Arab Emirates; shows with a mentoring element like Parental Guidance from Australia and The Bodyguard from Netherlands; talent show formats such as Starlight from Morocco and France, The Nation’s Biggest Karaoke from France, Queen Stars from Brazil; and other formats like The Hotel from Argentina, The 1% Club from United Kingdom, Grand Canyon –The Greatest Adventure from Denmark, and The Rookie from Spain.
(L-R) Ella Umansky, Vice President of Format Acquisitions, ITV Studios; Fenton Bailey, Co-Founder / Executive Producer, World of Wonder; Sanmesh Thakur, Executive Vice President & Territory Head, APAC, ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Ltd.; Rahul Raman, VP, Sales & Global Partnerships, 108 Media
Avril Blondelot Head of Content Insight Glance Médiamétrie
Old Enough! Is More Than Enough: Secrets of Success
With an unbelievably long lifespan of over three decades, Old Enough!, the Japanese reality television show which documents children running errands on their own for the first time, is of the absolute highest quality. But just what makes it so good?
Naoko Yano, Producer of Old Enough! at Nippon TV revealed that the secret to success lies not just in the initial novelty of the idea, but its inherently universal relatability in exploring childlike wonder through the eyes of children themselves and rooting for the kids’ endeavour, to be successful against all odds. Naoko further described the show’s beginnings as a simple documentary unexpectedly blossoming into an international phenomenon of vicarious adventure that inspired many with its subjects’ childlike determination in the face of relative hardship. Who can relate? Not just parents and older adults who adore children, but even other children themselves.
Old Enough! has even seen an adaptation in Singapore, where Mediacorp Executive Producer, Daniel Heng attributes the comprehensive safety guidelines and keen examination of cultural differences as highly important to its local adaptation.
Necessity: The Mother of Reinvention
In the sea of format television, reading the winds can decide if you sink or swim. Michelle Lin, APAC Manager at K7 Media, believes that some of these winds of change have grown stronger during the global pandemic.
Format television audiences have changed in response to the pandemic — they increasingly desire the outdoor experience of travel shows because of lockdowns, while reacting to a bleaker global outlook by either chasing humour in comedic gameshows or embracing darker survival formats. The years stolen by the pandemic have also spurred a youthful desire for romantic experiences that these audience members feel they have missed out on.
Yet, Michelle iterates, old is still gold. Revitalisation of old IPs in tandem with a hybridisation of different genres, such as the survival gameshow Squid Game The Challenge and dating format Love Alarm Clap! Clap! Clap!, have worked well. Updated sci-fi concepts like Girl’s Re:Verse and Memoon Player have similarly demonstrated that old stories with new twists, from virtual avatars to the metaverse, can be enticingly successful.
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APAC Manager K7 Media
(Clockwise) Daniel Heng, Executive Producer, Mediacorp (looking at the Singapore version of Old Enough!); Naoko Yano, Producer, Old Enough!, Nippon TV; Yuki Akehi, Director and Head of Marketing, International Business Development, Nippon TV; Nicolas Boucher, GM, DBcom Media (Moderator)
South Korea – A Growing Hub for Exportable Formats
As a format exporter, South Korea is relatively young compared to players like the US, UK, and Netherlands. Yet this nascent exporter saw international adaptations for 6 of its formats in 2021 alone, revealed Michelle Lin, APAC Manager, K7 Media, who moderated the formats session. As of August 2022, South Korean has seen overseas adaptations of 11 unique formats thus far.
This shows that The Masked Singer was not a flash in the pan for South Korea. The past few years have seen the country
expand the volume and diversity of formats exported, strengthening its position as a hub for exporting formats.
The session saw 10 new formats being presented, with four being music-related - Shadow Singer and My Boyfriend is Better by CJ ENM, Singing Seniors by SLL, and Sing for Gold by SBS. The rest of the formats were: Pet Me Pick Me by FormatEast, Nomovie by Kakao Entertainment, Survival Hunt and You Picked the Wrong by Something Special, Mystery Ranking 1, 2, 3 by Munhwa Broadcasting Corp, and Two Doors by DITURN.
Serious About In-Development
ATF 2022 has been surprising industry folks this year with its added elements and personal touch many did not expect, with the 100% in person comeback of the event. One of these welcoming additions was a Consultant from Europe, who was flown in to advise pitch finalists before they took the stage.
The first meet up on Rehearsal Day on Dec 6, saw Consultant and Finalists hit it off with in-depth discussions of industry ins and outs. Private consultations were then offered over the days leading up to the ATF Animation Pitch on Dec 9.
The K-Formats Panel @ ATF: Seungyeon Lee, Sales Executive, CJ ENM; Dongchan Kim, Creator, DITURN; Fay Zhang, Senior Manager/Producer, FormatEast; Christina Seo, International; Business Development Senior Manager, Kakao Entertainment; Hyemin Hwang, Marketing Manager, Munhwa Broadcasting Corp.; Hailey Yun, Producer, SBS; Hyejin Park, Manager, SLL; Praise Chanmi Shin, VP, Head of Sales & Licensing, Something Special; Michelle Lin, APAC Manager, K7 Media (Moderator)
Consultant Juraj Krasnohorsky, Head of Studies, CEE Animation Workshop & Producer, Artichoke, speaks to a finalist of the ATF Animation Pitch
A WORTHY PLAYER IN THE ANIMATION SPACE
Korean animation is making waves globally, and Anyzac Co., Ltd. has been one of the first few to jump on that bandwagon, with Time Traveler Luke being the first Korean animation series to reach the shores of France on Canal+.
Anyzac Co., Ltd. returns this year to ATV with a slate of animation series. Zombie Dumb season 3 also kicked off in South Korea in October this year. The animated series is a short 3.5 minutes per episode and consists of no dialogue, making it easy for people of all ages to enjoy.
SUPERKIDS TO SAVE THE DAY
Alpha Group started day one at ATF with a bang. As one of the top animation and toy companies in the world, they were understandably busy with back-to-back meetings to follow up on and finalise deals that have been gestating for months prior to the event. “It’s a pity we could not attend some of the conferences we were looking forward to as we are simply too busy speaking to our partners and clients!” Sicily Chan, Manager of TV, Media & Licensing, and CK Cheung, International Traffic Manager, lament with laughs.
Riding on the success of their smash hit Super Wings, which garnered International Emmy Kids Awards nominations in 2016 and 2019, Alpha Group is showcasing two new major animation productions here at the ATF.
The first is Petronix Defenders, which is co-produced with Mediawan, a leading animation company. With full rights to APAC for this IP, Alpha is looking to secure distribution on cable, freeto-air television, and other streaming platforms. The second is Quantum Heroes Dinoster, currently in production and slated for launch in 2024. The dynamic duo, Sicily and CK, have been speaking to potential customers and clients to garner interest and gather
feedback for this project. As part of the company’s conscious drive to inculcate values in children through entertainment, both IPs feature superhero children who use technology for good to save the environment and the world at large.
Overall, Sicily and CK are enthused about their participation as the ATF is a good platform to exchange ideas and keep abreast of new developments that will enable the company to plan ahead for the next decade.
This time round, Jene Hur, Department Manager of Anyzac Co., Ltd. is looking to network with people from the same industry. He is definitely no stranger in the scene, having participated in various media events and meeting with global players in the market. Another aim he has this year is to look for partners to invest in the upcoming animation Space Shaman Hunters, which is currently in production.
Aside from handling content development, the company also handles production, licensing and merchandising of animated characters.
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THE RIGHT SOUNDTRACK FOR EVERY CONTENT
Finding that perfect, authentic and impactful soundtrack is a problem that Melodie Music from Australia aims to solve for all storytellers. With over 3,500 titles and 25,000 files from independent artists, Evan Buist, Managing Director of Melodie Music is confident of the appeal of his catalogue. “Todate, over 2 million minutes of our music has been broadcasted in major Australian programs such as Ninja Warrior and Bondi Rescue,” he adds.
The company ventured overseas with its first US office in 2022 and is at ATF for the first time this year, to break into the Asian market. Staying true to his belief in “authentic” music, Evan shares that he is keen to work closely with Asian partners to bring more local music into his catalogues to serve the needs of his Asian storyteller base. Through ATF, Evan has been able to make the right connections with various markets including Singaporean and Korean partners. On top of chilli crabs and Din Tai Fung, Evan shared that he has closed a deal with a Spanish company – making his time at ATF worth it.
CONNECTING CHINA TO THE WORLD
For Liu Xuefei and Athena Li of Huanyu Entertainment, ATF is the perfect platform to reconnect with old associates and meet new ones. Besides the networking opportunities, they relish THE opportunity to attend conferences to learn about up-andcoming media technologies that can extend the company’s reach to consumers around the world.
Xuefei and Athena are encouraged by the palpable vibrancy of the industry at ATF, in the wake of the pandemic. “It’s good to see that these companies never stopped producing quality content,” Xuefei enthuses.
In the coming months, Huanyu, producer of the blockbuster series Story of Yanqi Palace, will be releasing their new drama series, Hi Producer on Tencent and iQIYI. The modern-day drama puts the spotlight on how the younger generation becomes inheritors of intangible cultural heritage as they grapple with everyday concerns of career, romance, family and friendship. The show promotes Chinese cultural heritage and showcases the fascinating aspects of Chinese
artisanship and craftsmanship. Like all Huanyu productions, the IP will be launched in China and eventually be made available to the international audience. Huanyu’s markets extend well beyond the borders of China, given the large Chinese diaspora population. Collaborations with global distributors such as Disney, HBO and Netflix has
helped the company reach its consumers all across the globe.
For the year ahead, Huanyu is looking forward to co-production opportunities with regional players. It also hopes to give its talent management business a boost by introducing regional talents to the mainland Chinese market and vice versa, Chinese talents to the regional markets.
THE ULTIMATE ONE-STOP SHOP
For those not acquainted with Turkish drama, Aysegul Tuzun from Mistco gives a very vivid description of what to expect: The cast will comprise of droolsome actors and actresses. The lush sweeping Turkish landscape will be a feast for the eyes. The plot will be an aspirational story of the suppressed or weak overcoming all odds to achieve a happy ending.
In Aysegul’s words, Mistco is a “onestop shop that provides content for all”. And by all, we really mean all. The diverse formats the company carries include documentaries, drama series, movies, telenovela and animations, and their scripted titles span every genre from crime to comedy. If you are looking for a Turkish IP for any demographic, Mistco should be your first (and perhaps last) stop.
At the ATF, Mistco is proud to present “Bahar”, a co-production with Us Yapim. The IP, currently still
in production, is a 100-episode long telenovela about a kind-hearted girl from a wealthy family who fights to keep her innocence and humanity in a cruel world where a scheming stepmother attempts to thwart her every endeavour.
Going forward, Mistco plans to invest more in productions. “The world is shifting from traditional free-toair television to VOD and online platforms. If we produce our own content and preserve its IP, we can use it in whichever format and deliver it on whichever platform we choose,” Aysegul points out. “People’s habits are changing. In the future, nobody is going to sit and watch a 100-episode, 45-minute show on television. To remain relevant, Turkish drama serials need to adapt and possibly change to a shorter format – either in number of episodes or duration per episode.”
A NEW, YET FORMIDABLE PLAYER IN THE MARKET
A first timer at ATF, Bamboo Network is excited at the prospect of meeting potential international buyers of their IP The Witch Store Reopens. The new media content studio not only produces IP, but is also focused on extending the lifespan of the IP by producing it in long-form for its second season.
The company – established in 2018 –is fairly new in the industry, and was a product of a partnership between two schoolmates during their college days. Its General Manager, Yang Ji Hun, shared his objective. Post-Covid, he’s seeing a change in the Korean market. There are many more opportunities for production houses such as his own to start producing long-form content for traditional channels.
Bamboo Network’s genre focus is on web dramas, high teen, fantasy and romance. However, for an upcoming long-form drama that the company is currently working on, Ji Hun shared that they will be exploring a different genre this time. He added that they are also currently in discussion with a local TV platform for its distribution.
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J-Wave to the World:
TBS Holdings’ THE SEVEN teams up with Netflix to Make Live-Action Hits
THE SEVEN, the newly established producers’ unit for the achievement of TBS (Tokyo Broadcasting System)’s global strategies began full-scale operations. THE SEVEN’s roster of big-name creators including Akira Morii, who has partnered with Netflix to produce both seasons of the successful Alice in Borderland series and is now working on Zom 100: Bucket List of the Dead and Yu Yu Hakusho, leads development and production effort at THE SEVEN, while leading visual effects producer Tomofumi Akahane (Assassination Classroom, The Confidence Man JP, Yu Yu Hakusho) will bring fantastical and out-of-this-world stories to screen.
THE SEVEN also announced to enter a strategic partnership with Netflix. Over the next five years, it will produce multiple original live-action titles that will be exclusively available to Netflix members across 190 countries. THE SEVEN aims to tell stories from Japan in new ways, unbound by traditional creative limitations. The partnership with Netflix gives the scale in production and budget, the creative freedom, and the reach to share the groundbreaking showstoppers with the world.
THE SEVEN will also have access to an expansive new studio lot of almost 1000 square meters at Midoriyama Studio City, slated to be one of the largest and most advanced soundstages of its kind in Japan when completed next year, ensuring best-in-class quality. Also, a dedicated VFX room will be provided in Akasaka, Tokyo to support various productions.
For details, please contact: Fumi Nishibashi, Director, Business Development, THE SEVEN / TBS fumi@ the7.co.jp
Just 6 years old, Campfire Aniworks, an animation company that focuses on creating edutainment IP for the global market, has already enjoyed significant success. Its latest 3D animation series, The BigFoots, which was co-produced with EBS and YOUKU, charted at pole position in the last two months of its release in China. Another IP, Rainbow Bubblegem, a co-production with Tencent and EBS, is scheduled for release next July during the summer vacation.
The company hopes to identify potential investors at ATF for their upcoming IP, Hello Mr. Sunglass. The animation is an edutainment game targeted at 2 to 4-year-olds. Through interactive quizzes, children will be led on a journey of discovery of the world around them using their senses. “It’s already 80% funded, so we’re looking for the remaining 20%,” Sales Manager Kyungmin Nah reveals.
BRINGING MORE TO THE TABLE WITH EXPANDED OFFERINGS
Hear it from SLL, a specialised studio that distinguishes itself from other production houses with its fully-integrated studio model - from production to distribution - being the only company in South Korea with this unique selling point.
Having created more than 30 titles a year in a wide range of genres, the original IP that stands out from the crowd would be Reborn Rich, a new Korean fantasy drama (16 episodes) in which a swirl of conspiracies lives. This series itself is of a hybrid genre blending historical fiction with elements of time-travel, powered by the thrilling quest for vengeance. Its brilliance is capped off with a starstudded cast, including main actor Song Joong-ki, who rose to fame in the hit variety show Running Man as one of the original cast members.
“With the release of this limited series, we have successfully differentiated ourselves; it was achieved through
dealing with the times realistically, bringing major events from the 1980s to the background story. The popularity of the series stems from its originality and that’s why I can say it is considered a successful IP for us,” says JK Kan, Global Content Business Group Director of SLL.
The company maintains that trend is fundamentally motivated by demand and vice versa, believing in being genre-neutral.
“A high-demand genre is any genre that is high in demand. Crime drama, for example, may not be a new type of genre but it can achieve worldwide popularity through quality just the same,” continues JK.
SLL’s headline goal for 2023 is going global, having acquired Wiip, the independent studio behind recent HBO hit Mare of Easttown
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KING OF K-DRAMA
Few companies can do what CJ ENM does in the Korean market. In a year, the company produces 20 new drama titles for their channel TVN and 5 new drama titles for their OTT platform, TVING. To put that into perspective, competitors typically produce only half that number within the same period. The company also handles the making of a drama end-to-end from production to distribution.
An upcoming project CJ ENM is excited about is the action drama “Island”. Adapted from the popular Korean webtoon, the drama is a departure from the genre of rom-com that forms the staple of K-drama. The production team is aiming to replicate the webtoon as faithfully as possible, down to selecting a cast that resemble the drawn characters. The buzz created around this production has caused fans of the webtoon to salivate in anticipation.
Like many participants, Jung Min Hwa says the company is happy to use ATF as a platform to connect with partners and clients. He is also making use of this event to keep CJ ENM’s clients apprised of the company’s initiatives and strategy for the upcoming year.
STAYING TRUE TO THE MISSION OF QUALITY KIDS CONTENT
For over 40 years, the Australian Children’s Television Foundation (ACTF) has stayed true to its audience, kids, by ensuring that the content they produce resonate with children who can “see themselves represented on screen”. This unwavering northstar has helped their content be universally exportable despite being created primarily for the Australian audience. Roberta Di Vito, International Sales Manager at ACTF highlighted Hardball as a great example. Running for its 2nd season, the show has been exported to multiple countries and has also won the International Emmy for Kids Award. Roberta added that heartfelt comedy content will always do well across various territories.
Despite carrying very niche programming, ACTF is proud to have broken into many key Asian territories including Japan, Korea, Vietnam and Hong Kong SAR, markets that place a premium on high value productions and content. Being at ATF 2022 has also allowed Roberta to connect and nurture these important relationships after two years of “digital-only relationships.”
FROM PRINT TO SCREEN
Over the years, Poplar Publishing has transitioned from being merely a print publisher that specialises in chidren’s stories to an IP aggregator. The company’s core strategy is to develop IPs from the books that it publishes and convert them into merchandise, events, collaborations and digital content. An example of this is the Kaiketsu Zorori IP. Originally a book series, the IP was converted into a 3D animation series and a movie.
When asked what Poplar stands for, Momoka Kataoka, Head of Business Planning & Content Business Division, Poplar, elaborates, “Our mission is to create content that children across the world really like. Some children’s content creators focus on what parents want, instead of what the kids want. We believe in the childcentric approach. That’s why our children’s titles are still beloved across generations for over 75 years.”
BRINGING MORE TO THE TABLE WITH EXPANDED OFFERINGS
From starting off with offering animation programmes, Zoland Distribution has now expanded the slate of programmes under its belt to live action movies, dramas, documentaries, E-sports and more. This move was made about a year ago, and the company has to date more than 5000 movie titles from the United States, China, Philippines, India and many other territories.
For Samantha Wong, Head of Global Division at Zoland Distribution, ATF is an important market to meet with buyers from all over the world. “ATF is strategically timed, as taking place at the end of the year would mean we could meet buyers who have excess budgets or might be in the midst of planning their budgets for the next year.”
This year, one of the highlights for Zoland Distribution is the launch of its own IP Betsy the Bear Car, a 2D animation targeted at preschoolers. The company has also invested heavily in technology to improve the quality of their offerings, having opened a brandnew studio at their headquarters in Hangzhou, China. The studio now has the capability to perform motion
capturing through augmented reality (AR) technology.
One item on Samantha’s wish list is to meet with partners looking to discussing IP development or wanting to distribute their content to a global market.
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LOVE OF K-CONTENT SPARK SEQUEL
INTEREST FOR SBS
It has been 10 years since Jin Hae-Dong’s last visit to Singapore. As Head of SBS’ Content Department, he finds ATF in Singapore especially meaningful as the country serves as the regional headquarters for many global OTTs. It has been a busy two days for Hae-Dong, with many buyers vising the SBS booth for the premarketing of SBS’ 2023 lineup. “I have high expectations from this event,” Hae-Dong says.
Hae-Dong reveals what it takes to consistently produce high quality K-dramas: attracting and retaining the biggest and brightest talents from writing to acting, keeping a finger on the pulse of the latest trends to get a feel for what consumers expect, and collecting data from global OTT platforms to get feedback on how viewers from different regions react to a title. “The uniqueness of Korean culture and lifestyle that is embedded in the storylines is a selling point in itself. People from different countries are drawn to that,” Hae-Dong observes.
To prepare SBS for the shift in trend that favours distribution on global OTTs over local broadcasting stations, SBS has begun working on co-production frameworks with potential OTT partners. “There is a genuine concern to be more deliberate in our planning and to involve OTTs as a strategic stakeholder,” Hae-Dong says.
For 2023, partners and fans of SBS dramas can look forward to sequels of popular titles such as “Taxi Driver 2”, “Dr. Romantic 3”, “The First Responders 2” as well as new exciting titles such as “The Escape of the Seven” by writer Kim Soon-Ok and “The Devil” by writer Kim Eun-Hee.
THE METEORIC RISE OF TURKISH DRAMAS
After relishing Korean dramas in the past few years, young Indian viewers are now falling in love with Turkish programming. And this is just the beginning of worldwide success, Istanbul-based production studio Saran Studios believes.
Saran Studios was established two years ago and specialises in highquality content that is poised for immediate release without the need for editing. The production division has recently entered the Turkish drama category, identifying immense global potential in the family drama series genre. Their first production is A Mother’s Love, a daily 45-minute TV series that has already been sold to 13 territories, including Spain and Argentina.
The latest on their catalog is the acquisition of global distribution rights of Stepfather, a new daily series to be produced by Bloom Media, one of Turkey’s most influential media production companies.
“Turkish drama series have found a loyal fan base domestically, India and in Latin America and we aim to catapult the category to the ranks of worldwide reception. ATF is a fantastic platform to connect with both buyers and distributors across Southeast Asia,” says Sera Kaynak, Sales Manager at Saran Studios.
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A GOOD NOSE FOR CONTENT THAT TRAVELS
Image Link Global (ILG) of Kyodo News Images, a subsidiary company of KYODO News, is irrefutably the connective tissue between past and present.
The photo agency owns a huge archive of images and videos across a range of subject matters – from Japanese political history, economics and natural disasters to technology, major sport events such as the 1964 Tokyo Olympics and the imperial family, from the mid 1900s till present-day.
Documentaries have grown in popularity among the younger generation, noted for their role in preserving important events or parts of history. ILG’s assets can form the backbone of stories or archival footage that might otherwise be buried, unlocking access to plethora of news, press photos and even radio clips by the KYODO NEWS team in real time.
“Our primary markets include South Korea, the rest of Asia and Europe. The commercial team is here at ATF to promote our service to production companies who specialise in creating documentaries relating to Japan, or
want usage of North Korea content,” says Huang Tzeling from International Sales at Kyodo News Images.
Their service has also expanded to provide assistance in photography and videography as well as rights clearance - ILG can support firms in the negotiation to obtain permission from the rights holder of both commercial and non-commercial content.
In an age where virtual production enables content creators to create
virtually any scene, ILG opines that their niche will have its place in complementing the technology.
Commenting on ILG’s prevailing relevance, Huang says, “Old archived footage will always be crucial for production companies looking to retell stories from the past, particularly when they need to reference the depiction in reality.”
UNFOLDING A NEW PATH FORWARD WITH COLLABORATION & EXPANSION
Local media publisher, Our Grandfather Story (OGS) launched a new parent entity UNFOLD Asia and its in-house production and animation studio at ATF. As a media group, UNFOLD Asia seeks to entertain and educate Southeast Asian audiences through creative storytelling. The group will house all digital media platforms affiliated with OGS, including animation channel O+, web comic Sincerely, Singles, and female wellness podcast, Something Private, reaching over 10 million viewers monthly.
UNFOLD Asia also ventures into original programming for international streamers and networks with its in-house production and animation studio. Backed by audience insights and creative expertise from its digital
platforms, UNFOLD Studio and Animation is in a unique position to bring refreshing, yet relatable content to international streamers and networks.
“The online space is a great testbed for new formats. Our track record in creating engaging yet meaningful works on social media, from YouTube to TikTok, will be an asset for streamers looking for fresh ideas that bring together the best of digital and television,” said Ng Kai Yuan, Co-founder of OGS and UNFOLD Asia. The studio has factual and animation series in development and is open to co-productions.
TRANSPLANTING IP s
Zhang Shiqi, Senior Licensing Manager at Bilibili, had a fruitful first day at ATF. The company had productive discussions with its partners including Medialink, Toei and Aniplus to explore opportunities to expand its footprint outside of China. Potential projects borne from these discussions include partnerships with cafes and cinematic releases in the Southeast Asian market.
“We have been talking to our partners online for a long time, so it was great to finally meet up face-to-face,” says Shiqi.
The company’s niche is in acquiring popular Japanese IPs and updating them to give them a fresh and modern look and feel. One of the company’s flagship IP, Herbivorous Dragon, was originally acquired from
Kadokawa. Chinese writers and artists injected their own creative sensibilities to produce an updated manga series that appeal to generation Z, which is Bilibili’s primary target consumers.
In the longer term, Shiqi foresees the industry increasing their R&D spend on VR and AR technology.
“TV has been around for a long time. There is a limit to the entertainment TV can provide. VR-AR will push entertainment to the next level,” says Mr Shiqi.
HISTORY IN THE MAKING
Raya Group’s latest venture, a collaboration with an Uzbek company, broke records by being the most expensive Turkish drama series ever produced. The attention to detail in The Sultan and the Khan has translated into quality production on par with Hollywood standards.
According to Sales Manager Deniz Yaylaci, genres that the company has seen do well are historical series, comedy movies and horror movies. “As long as it is a modern, fresh drama, it is easy to sell. Turkish dramas tend to have high emotional content, which is a selling point in many markets,” Deniz adds.
Unlike many Turkish media companies, Raya Group is an independent company, giving it flexibility with regards to whom it collaborates with and how it markets and distributes its content.
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200 S.E 15th Road Suit 15B Brickell Harbour Miami Fl, 33129 Tel: +1 (786) 350 5538 email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org The world has changed… And so have we… Proud Media Partners www.tvmasmagazine.com
CHAMPIONING THE MASS MARKET APPEAL
In an industry that increasingly lauds individualism, there is a brand of universal appeal that, contrary to popular expectation, does not cancel out originality. Its success is evidenced by the popularity of works by Munhwa Broadcasting Group (MBC), the production company behind the internationally acclaimed drama Dae Jang Geum
Fast forward to 2021-2022, The Red Sleeve debuted with great reception; Within the confines of the done-todeath romance genre, this drama’s feisty female protagonist resonates deeply with a wide female audience, her life motto memorably reflected in the quote – “The most important person is myself”.
Appealing to a broad age range of 20 to 49 is of paramount importance to MBC, whose model is unique in terms of both ownership and revenue source and faces pressures of producing trendy content to remain competitive.
The creativity of their productions extends to their specialisation in game shows, such as their latest format Keep Talking, which is slated for broadcast on December 11, 2022. It follows a refreshing oratorical sports concept, inviting storytellers to present their narratives - only to end on a cliffhanger. An audience of 100 will then vote on the story they’d like to hear to completion.
Keep Talking was created following the impressive performance of another game show, Masked Singer, which was an instant hit that launched
to 55 different cities globally. Most notably, it was franchised out to Fox Entertainment and renewed for several seasons. This strategy ties in with one of MBC’s main goals of replicating the success of well-received formats – a winning formula that will assist them in diversifying revenue streams amidst a global ad market crunch.
“One huge accomplishment at ATF is having exchanged insights and thoughts with a host of broadcasting and production companies. I am also very happy to be exposed to the conference spotlight where the
Head of Production from various powerhouse studios in Korea shared their experience in finding the secret ingredient to success; Despite them having very different philosophies, in their own ways, they have attained great commercial performance in spades,” says Lee, Young-ho, Director of Global Business at MBC.
In gleaning wisdom from fellow industry giants, Lee intends to share these valuable insights with their production team back home, who will in turn create content that continues to hit the sweet spot.
NEW CONTENT COLLAB FOR A DIGITAL GAME SHOW
Mediacorp and YouTube announced a collaboration to produce That Free Money Show (tentative title), an exciting new digital game show that will feature unique Singaporethemed challenges. With an MOU signed at ATF 2022, the show is slated for release at end January 2023 on Mediacorp Entertainment YouTube channel and meWATCH. The programme will pit YouTube content creators against one another for a chance to win cash prizes of up to S$50,000.
Presented in 10-minute episodes targeted at digital viewers aged 18 to 24, this five-part series will feature YouTube creators participating in segments that spotlight Singapore stories, landmarks, customs and culture. This partnership signals Mediacorp’s continued commitment to working with local talents on new and relatable content to engage and excite young digital native audiences and is an expansion of the relationship established between the two companies, complementing Mediacorp’s multiplatform storytelling expertise with the targeted reach of YouTube’s platform and its content creators. This collaboration is also another step forward in both companies’ efforts to help creators find new audiences and grow the vibrant creator community in Singapore.
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Launching a new IP or series is fraught with risks. Sure, your pilot may have impressed the test audience but what if the ‘real’ audience hates it? Richard Gi, CEO of MStoryHub thinks that Webtoons may be the secret to hit IPs. The MStoryHub group of companies is involved in webtoons, production, translation and already has offices in Vietnam, China and Japan. The company sees itself plugged into every level of the content ecosystem with webtoons being an important source for ideas. With the ability to deeply delve into the user data generated through webtoon platforms, MStoryHub has additional insights into what might make a successful drama series.
Richard shared three exciting webtoons-to-drama series adaptations in progress, “Remarried Empress”, “Please, Kiss Angel” and “Leather Romance”. He is very bullish on “Remarried Empress”, a webtoon that has been translated to 10 languages including Japanese, Thai, German, English and Spanish. The webtoon is already the top series in the US and Japan, so Richard is confident on the take-up of the live action drama adaptation. Stay tuned to find out more!
A GOOD NOSE FOR CONTENT THAT TRAVELS
With over 95% of their revenue from overseas markets, Natalie Lawley, Managing Director of Escapade Media can quickly sift out content that she knows will do well anywhere. As a company with both a distribution and development arm, Escapade Media likes to ‘get involved early’ on scripted and unscripted formats productions because they believe their insights can add tiny tweaks that have a huge impact on making the content sellable worldwide. Sharing a nugget of wisdom, Natalie said, “Sometimes, unscripted formats have ‘too many talking heads’ and that alone, can make it more challenging to maximize the global reach of the content. A simple tweak like reducing the number of hosts, can go a long way”.
Here at ATF for her 23rd time, Escapade Media was also premiering two brand new content at the market. Grassroots (6x60) is a scripted show centered around a female rugby team in the UK coached by a female Australian. Breakaway Femmes is a new documentary about the women’s Tour de France, that once ran alongside the men’s race in the ‘80s before making a comeback in 2022. “Womens’ sports, their triumph and tribulation, is another universal story that is gaining popularity around the world.”
IS THIS THE SECRET SAUCE TO SUCCESS FOR NEW
DIRECTING THE SELFDISTRIBUTION OF FILMS
When sales of her feature film The Darker The Lake (shot in Austria in 2018) failed to take off in the hands of agents, Janice Woo did what she felt a respectable director would do - she buckled down and took to selling them herself.
The rest is history for the well-known director cum distributor, who founded Error 404 Productions, an international sales and distribution company, back in 2018. She took on distribution rights for a multitude of China films; following the distribution success of Nezha, many China directors came a-knocking to request for her assistance in selling their works to western countries and the Middle East.
“These regions boast a plethora of buyers on the lookout for quality films. What is important is to be globally connected and attuned to the preference of the audience in that you know what kind of content will sell, where,” inputs Janice, whose international background has led to her becoming one of the most plugged-in distributors in the region.
She expects to successfully close deals in multiple territories for Mutant Ghost War Girl, a Sci-Fi action film that has just released in China.
“The martial arts genre is exceptionally popular in Asia, while Sci-Fi and action genres are an easier sell in North America, Latin America and Europe,” Janice shares.
The Darker The Lake has successfully gained traction in many regions, including the UK, Ireland, Taiwan and Latin America; There has even been more than 700 screenings in cinemas across Russia.
The dark reality of the filmmaking business is that not every product would attain commercial success. Janice highlights MANipulation, a selfdirected documentary feature that employs the use of film techniques such as breaking the fourth wall, to speak about domestic abuse, as a prime example.
“Due to the sensitive nature of the subject matter, MANipulation was always going to be a wild card. However, the darker and more compelling the theme is, the stronger we have to push for its visibility,” asserts Janice.
Singapore’s national media network Mediacorp and global entertainment company The Pinkfong Company –best known for being the creators of the global phenomenon Pinkfong Baby Shark – have established a partnership involving the acquisition of kids programming for Mediacorp’s digital and TV platforms. Announced at a signing ceremony at ATF, the deal will see over 50 hours of fresh content from Pinkfong on meWATCH and okto on 5 for the first time.
Angeline Poh, Chief Customer and Corporate Development Officer, Mediacorp, said, “We are excited to join
hands with The Pinkfong Company, a household name synonymous with popular kids’ content. This partnership marks another major step in Mediacorp’s drive to grow our range of programme offerings for our youngest audience members, and is also a nod to their multiplatform viewing habits and general preference for shorter-form content.”
Viewers can access Pinkfong content on meWATCH at www.mewatch.sg/ kids as well as on free-to-air TV channel okto on 5.
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A DEAL SEALED TO BRING WELL-LOVED BABY SHARK SHOWS & MORE TO MEWATCH & OKTO ON 5
PINKFONG’S BEBEFINN MAKES A SPLASH
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you would definitely have heard of The Pinkfong Company, which has become a household name not only in South Korea, but also worldwide – thanks to its hit Baby Shark, which became the first video to hit 10 billion views.
The company returns to ATF this year with a new programme in tow – Bebefinn, its new 3D animated singalong series about the heartwarming adventures of three little siblings and their parents. Launched in April this year, this is the company’s first family show, and has amassed over 1.7 million followers on TikTok.
The company recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Mediacorp to bring Baby Shark and Bebefinn to families across Singapore via platforms meWATCH and Okto. Deals have also been inked with major channels in territories such as Hong Kong SAR and Indonesia.
The Pinkfong Company’s Chief Business Officer, Hyemin Gemma Joo, shared that they focus on ensuring that programmes are mobile-friendly. “To capture attention, we optimise the length of content. Some content could be just a few minutes short, whereas others are compilations and could go up to an hour long. With the Pinkfong mobile app and with our programmes being on so many major platforms, audiences can access our content from anywhere, at anytime.”
Gemma also shared that the company always places emphasis on being “family-first” when creating shows. As with Bebefinn, the programme offers a fun learning experience where kids and family can learn fundamental life skills.
“Families in this generation are more exposed to an extreme amount of data and information. Combining entertainment and education is a great approach to attract the attention of kids.”
THE POWER OF THE DOC
Once perceived as niche, the documentary genre is undergoing a revival as audience demand for real life stories continues to grow. Streamers have played a key part in helping broaden the appeal through a slate of impact-led stories, which allow consumers to be a part of larger social conversations, cultures, and movements.
For sales agent Léa Valentin, of Andana Films, this is a positive sign. Focused on documentaries, the company is geared up for its first ever appearance at ATF. Léa’s priority is to build stronger professional connections and establish a network of clients in the region. She is also interested in finding homes for the company’s mix of French and foreign films that range from one-hour investigative documentaries to buzzier editorial feature length titles, covering art, culture, history, politics, social issues and science.
Fantastic Timing Fantasy Romance Drama
Show Window: The Queen's House Drama
Work Later Drink Now 2 Drama
TASTES OF HORROR Horror
Seasons of the wetland Documentary
Peet, The Forest Detective Animation
BTS Music Documentary Documentary
Tayo, The Little Bus Season 6 Children and Family
Perfect City SF Action Thriller
Dr. Evacuation Entertainment Oasis Drama
Good Job Drama
Extraordinary Attorney Woo Drama
Jinxed at First Drama
Weekly Idol K-POP Entertainment
Fanletter, Please ! Romance, Comedy
FUTURE CITY: CHERNOBYL VR XR 4K Documentary
Cheer Up Drama Bargain Thriller
The Garden of Harmony Romantic Comedy, Historical Drama
Dinoman Animated TV Series
Andante of Love Romantic Comedy
When an unknown virus spreads across the forest, the Rhino Beetles –widely known as the healers of the forest – are forced to seek out the humans and enlist their help to save their home. In the process, they must fend off their nemesis, the Stag Beetles that are bent on causing further destruction.
Taiwanese actress, Lotus Wang goes on a road trip around Taiwan with her daughter. The pair makes for an interesting and dynamic duo, as viewers experience their journey Taiwan’s stunning scenery in this travelogue series.
STORIES OF THE HIDDEN WORLDS
From the white villages of Siberia to the red hot deserts of Mali, the series presents a rich, intimate look at how people and communities around the world have adapted and preserved their cultural heritage, as well as created their own language in an effort to survive and thrive. COMPANY: BLUE MEDIA
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COMPANY: COCKTAIL MEDIA CORP. COMPANY: SANLIH E-TELEVISION CO., LTD
THE LEGEND OF THE GALACTIC HEROES: DIE NEUE THESE – STELLAR WAR
Set in the distant intergalactic future, a 150-year-long stalemate between the two interstellar superpowers, the Galactic Empire and the Free Planets Alliance, comes to an end when a new generation of leaders arises: the idealistic military genius Reinhard von Lohengramm, and the Free Planets Alliance’s reserved historian, Yang Wenli.
When otherworldly, interdimensional creatures start causing disturbances in their hometown, three teenagers – Jin, a loner with the ability to see portals that lead to other dimensions, Leon, a motormouthed quantum physics and gadget enthusiast, and Sarah, an image-conscious psychic – reluctantly team up to banish and find the source of the creatures.
Twelve up-and-coming models compete in intense physical tasks and photoshoot challenges for the coveted top prize of gracing the cover of an international fashion magazine, and the newest international supermodel of Storm Model Management.
52 + ATF 2021 hybrid edition preview ATF 2022 DAY three 9DEC
COMPANY: JUO STUDIOS COMPANY: REFINERY MEDIA PTE LTD COMPANY: DMM.COM LLC
THE NUTCRACKER AND THE MAGIC FLUTE
Wishing to be carefree, 17-year-old Marie is magically shrunk down to the size of her childhood toys, which all come to life. There, she discovers a nutcracker doll to be a prince who has been put under a spell and sets him free.
Aisyah, a young woman in Singapore, driven by her career as a souschef, finds herself at a crossroads after her mother’s death. Seeking answers, she confronts her estranged father, a demanding career, and a relationship separated by geographical distance.
Based on a popular biographical comic book by Sakura Momoko, the story revolves around a sweet, obnoxious 9-year-old girl who spends her day tricking her grandfather, pondering how to spend her allowance, and avoiding boys.
NIPPON ANIMATION CO., LTD.
COMPANY: MONOCHROMATIC PICTURES
A young girl living in an African village with her brother and grandfather becomes a local superhero, thanks to her ingenuity and STEM skills. With determination, imagination, and a helping hand from science and technology, she is able to tackle all challenges that come her way!
THE TIES OF LOVE DRAMA
Betrayed by her philandering boyfriend, Andien ends her relationship with him and hastily accepts a marriage proposal from another man. On her wedding day, however, she ends up at the crime scene of her dead ex-boyfriend and inadvertently, becomes the key suspect.
When economics professor, Shim Jeong, unlocks the ability to time travel, he leaps back into the past with his daughter to save his wife from a fatal accident. The time continuum is, however, tricky as Shim discovers that he is only has sixty minutes in any travelled reality. COMPANY:
+ ATF 2021 hybrid edition preview ATF 2022 DAY three 9DEC
COMPANY: CAKE ENTERTAINMENT
PT MNC DIGITAL ENTERTAINMENT TBK QQ MNC CONTENTS
AK ENTERTAINMENT CO., LTD. FANTASTIC TIMING
An unconventional and quirky family of sea lions live in the African village of Iloilo. They behave opposite and uncharacteristically of the ocean dwelling creatures that they should be. Father sea lion is fearful of the water, while Mother sea lion rocks a temper. Baby sea lion oozes fun and yearns to be a flower!
COMPANY: SANGDAN STUDIO CO., LTD.
BTS WORLD TOUR: LOVE YOURSELF
In this star-studded extravaganza, viewers get an exclusive behind-the-scenes with South Korean boy band, BTS, as they rehearse and prepare for their concert performances. The film highlights the band’s ups and downs, and their hard work and dedication.
THE MISADVENTURES OF CUBEMELT
Cubemelt, a young affable ice cube, has to contend with not melting as he journeys outside his home in the refrigerator to hang out and play with his buds; Cookie, Sausage and Lightbulb. Filled with laughter, fun and wonder, the friends rally together to help Cubemelt from turning into a puddle of water!
COMPANY: ANIMAGINE PTE LTD
‘Global Festival’ profiles various festivals around the world, taking viewers to the heart of an event, offering behind-the-scenes access as locals prepare for the celebrations and welcome visitors from all across the globe.
INSECTICIDES, A LICENCE TO KILL DOCUMENTARY
A scientific and investigative documentary that examines a class of neuro-active insecticide known as neonicotinoids, its catastrophic consequences and the lengths that corporations manufacturing the chemical would go through to cover-up their actions and dodge regulation.
COMPANY: ELTA TECHNOLOGY CO., LTD
When night falls and the human kids from Freemont Elementary have all gone home, a vain Vampire, a happy-go-lucky Goblin, a smelly Zombie, a snuggly Frankenstein, and a mischievous Ghost emerge and go on adventures together.
COMPANY: JETPACK DISTRIBUTION
+ ATF 2021 hybrid edition preview ATF 2022 DAY three 9DEC
COMPANY: ANDANA FILMS
SUPER SUBJECTIVE TRAVEL
Travel to Kyushu, the third-largest island of Japan’s five main islands, with host Takashi Yamaguchi as he travelogues through its hot springs, active volcanoes, lush greenery, delicious food, relaxed lifestyle and friendly people.
COMPANY: FUKUOKA BROADCASTING SYSTEM CORP. (FBS-TV)
TRAVELLING CHEF DE FRANCE IN HOKKAIDO (S1)
French chef, Amandine Chaignot journeys around Hokkaido, where she learns about the country’s cuisine and people. Catering for sweet tooths as well as savoury food fiends, Amandine interprets local dishes putting a French spin on her culinary creations.
COMPANY: HOKKAIDO BROADCASTING CO.,LTD.
When Empress Navier Ellie Trovi learns about her husband’s betrayal with a mistress, she boldly demands for a divorce. In a shocking revelation to the Eastern Empire, the Empress remarries another monarch, preserving her status as royalty.
TAYO, THE LITTLE BUS (S6)
Tayo and the little buses are excited as their garage adds a second floor, and they are as ready as ever to jump into new adventures! Along with the renovated garage, Tayo meets some amazing new friends, ‘Cargo’ the plane, ‘Long’ the powerful container truck and many more fun cars!
WEEKLY IDOL FORMATS
Featuring some of Korea’s most popular stars such as EXO, BTS, Winner and Twice, a different K-POP idol group is invited to the variety show, where a host and contestants engage with them in a variety of games and quizzes.
In this reality show, a team of contestants is given a few experiments to execute. Some are useful, while most of the others are outright fun, strange and hilarious. Laughs are guaranteed!
+ ATF 2021 hybrid edition preview ATF 2022 DAY three 9DEC
COMPANY: LIANG LI MEDIA HAVE FUN 2
DUDA AND DADA
Happy-go-lucky mole, Duda enjoys discovering the world above the ground. With his explorer pal, Dada, the duo embark on exciting adventures to forests, oceans, and mystical places where they meet wondrous animals and complete the wiki-encyclopaedia for all explorers in the world.
COCOMELON ANIMATION, PRE-SCHOOL
CoComelon is a fun show about childhood, celebrating the big moments for little kids. It follows JJ, his family and his friends on everyday adventures, exploring and learning through relatable situations and catchy songs.
DRAMA THE COOK OF CASTAMAR
Set in 1720, a young woman takes refuge in the kitchen of a palace where she cooks for the Duke of Castamar. A chance encounter leads to a budding attraction between the couple. However, they must skirt around Castamar high society in their search of love, adventure and happiness.
COMPANY: ATRESMEDIA TV
COMPANY: EYESCREAM STUDIO
COMPANY: MOONBUG ENTERTAINMENT
PRAWN NOODLES AND A DREAM
Following an apprenticeship, a young school dropout decides to reinvent his mother’s prawn noodles recipe and opens a hawker business. Guaranteed to deliver a foodie fix, the documentary follows the young man as he strikes it out in Singapore’s diverse culinary world.
CURTAIN CALL DRAMA
When an unknown theatre actor crosses paths with a dying elderly woman from North Korea, he empathetically poses as her long-lost grandson, bringing joy to the woman as he fulfils her last wish.
Bheem, the dhoti clad kid with a heart of pure gold, along with his trustworthy friends, go on incredible adventures around the world having fun and helping people. No day is the same with this bunch of friends!
+ ATF 2021 hybrid edition preview ATF 2022 DAY three 9DEC
COMPANY: LIAN CONTENTS
COMPANY: ANTARES INTERNATIONAL MEDIA
COMPANY: GREEN GOLD ANIMATION