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THE 2020 OFFICIAL â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 2 Dec 2020
TUBI: BEYOND VOD
ITV: FORMATS FORESIGHT
PAPER ENT.: CONTENT IS KING
BBC: FACTUAL PERFECTIONS
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DECEMBER 1—4 @ 10:30AM–12: 30PM MORNINGS with Industry Leaders @ 12:30PM–2PM LUNCHTIME Buying @ 2PM–5PM
The man behind the media, Howie Lau, Assistant Chief Executive, Media and Innovation of Singapore’s Infocomm Media Development Authority, finding some gratification after long uneventful months of little industry networking. Here, in deep conversation with Dr Michael Gryseels, President of True Digital Group after a great Keynote session in studio. Should Thanos be worried though?
FOCUS ON CHINA SPECIAL: On the Road to Recovery – China Starts to Heal… With You
Exclusive: SHINING A SPOTLIGHT ON THE MIDDLE EAST
An Event of
CONFERENCE @ ATF CONFERENCE – Southeast Asian Film Financing Forum (SAFF)
COFFEE HOUR Content Showcase @ 3:30PM–5PM
FE SCR ATURE E D Full ENING Epis S Ava ode ilab s le! (via AT
Scre F’s Libr ening ary)
Production AFTERNOONS @ 5PM–5:30PM Southeast Asian Film Financing Forum Speed Dating Sessions SAFF Project Market Speed Dating Sessions COFFEE HOUR CONTENT SHOWCASE Daily from 2pm–5pm
EDITORIAL & PRODUCTION TEAM EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Lulu Mendoza WRITERS Priscilla Hendriks, Suhaimi Saini CONFERENCE WRITER Serene Ong DESIGNER Shellen Teh VIDEO PRODUCTION Lim Eu-Jin (Reel Productions HD) PHOTOGRAPHER Hairol Salim PROJECT MANAGEMENT GROUP PROJECT DIRECTOR Yeow Hui Leng SENIOR PROJECT MANAGER Joyce Chua PROJECT COORDINATOR Amanda Koh, Samantha Lee BUYERS RELATIONSHIP MANAGER Lim Li Min EXHIBITORS & PARTICIPANTS SENIOR ACCOUNT MANAGER Phua Meenyi ATF CONFERENCE EXECUTIVE PRODUCER Lulu Mendoza PRODUCER ASSISTANT Chua Jia Yin MARKETING MARKETING MANAGER Hairol Salim MARKETING EXECUTIVE Priscilla Hendriks OPERATIONS OPERATION EXECUTIVE Felicia Wong
Variety in Genre & Formats
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DARPAN GLOBAL SECURES TWO EXCLUSIVE DEALS
2021 RELEASE: MEDIACORP’S NEW DRAMA CO-PRO WITH SCREENWORKS ASIA LTD Mediacorp and Screenworks Asia Ltd have sealed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to co-produce a brand-new Chinese-language drama series, slated for release in the fourth quarter of 2021.
producing a new anthology series put together by a group of award-winning filmmakers. The production will feature artistes from both Singapore and Taiwan, with more details to be released at a later date.
The partnership sees both Mediacorp and Screenworks Asia Ltd co-
MEDIACORP PARTNERS WASU TO OFFER LARGEST LIBRARY OF TITLES TO CHINA Mediacorp announced a three-year content collaboration with Hangzhoubased digital service provider, Wasu Group that will see more than 1,000 hours of Mediacorp’s Chinese-language drama and lifestyle content being offered to over 100 million subscribers across 100 cities in 29 provinces in China. The inaugural distribution deal marks Mediacorp’s largest distribution to 04
date of its catalogue in the domestic Chinese market. Paying Wasu subscribers can now browse from a dedicated Mediacorp content section for Chinese-language shows, which include titles, such as, “Mightiest Mother-in-law《最强岳 母》” and “You Can Be An Angel《你 也可以是天使》”.
Darpan Global, who recently ventured into content production, announced that it has secured exclusive rights to the book-to-drama series adaptation of “Merchant of Death”. The multiple seasons drama, with Soumik Sen as the showrunner, will be shot across India, Singapore and the UK. The book by Neelima Dalmia is loosely based on true events and tells the story of a family-owned weapons company in India that spans across borders. Darpan’s second exclusive deal is an 8-episode horror comedy, “Beetroot: The Adventures of a Vegan Vampire”. Darpan is seeking for co-production, financing and commissioning partners at ATF for these titles.
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MARKET ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY: CHINA STARTS TO HEAL… WITH YOU A timely drama series that depicts ten simple but touching stories during the pandemic based on the real situation and characters. The gripping tale involves medical workers, military doctors, common takeaway deliveryman, vehicle volunteers, construction workers, disease control, community and public security personnel, young volunteers and workers of mask production. These ordinary people constitute the main force in all walks of life across the country and have made indelible contributions to the fight against the pandemic. “With You” tells the riveting story of Chinese civilians in the fight against the pandemic.
Length: 45min * 20 eps Cast: All-star lineup
FROM GAMES TO ANIMATION Cinewav Co-founders Jason Chan and Christian Lee
DISRUPTION: CINEWAV’S BIG SCREEN MAGIC Cinewav is a mobile app allowing users to watch a movie on a big screen and listen to the audio on their mobile phones, all perfectly in sync. The world first technology, developed in Singapore, replaces speakers, scaling to as many users as needed and eliminates noise pollution, allowing the activation of novel movie venues. 06
Cinewav also functions as a contactless event ticketing platform with a ticket scanning app. The platform will include a library of DRM secured films that allows film rights owners to upload their titles for non-theatrical screenings by film festivals, event organisers and venue owners globally.
7 Steps Production has signed an MOU with game developer BattleBrew Productions to turn its popular BattleSky Brigade game into an animation series. The animated series will offer fans the chance to explore the fantastical airborne island town and see their favorite characters beyond the game. This is the first time 7 Steps Production has worked on a game IP and the series will target the 7 to 10-year-old demographics. BattleSky Brigade is a Made With Singapore game.
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SHINING A SPOTLIGHT ON THE MIDDLE EAST WHAT ARE THE OPPORTUNITIES? AUTHORED BY MICHELLE LIN, THE APAC MANAGER OF K7 MEDIA
Territories in the Middle East region are at markedly different stages of economic development, though all skew young demographically. Majority of the countries speak the Arab language and more than 85% of the population are Muslims. Between 2014 and 2017, the number of free‐to‐air channels grew by more than 800% to more than 1,000 channels. In ATF’s Exclusive Market Overview Session, Shining a Spotlight on the Middle East, Michelle Lin the APAC Manager of K7 Media, introduced the mysterious market in 15 mins, covering the key players, the local programming trends, business opportunities and advice on how best to approach the market.
YOUNG POPULATION UNTAPPED POTENTIALS Overall, the Arab World has a huge under-30 population that could reach 70%. The majority are very connected online, they spend a lot of time consuming all sorts of content, and many are westernised, at least in entertainment tastes and habits. This offers a golden opportunity that is yet to be tapped under the right circumstances and conduits.
STREAMING COMPETITION HEATS UP The arrival of more services, as well as cheaper and faster internet, are contributing to increased competition amongst global and regional streamers in the Middle East. Streaming subscriptions in the region are forecast to reach 5 million by 2023, making it one of the space’s fastestgrowing regions. One aggressive player is the MBC Group-owned streaming platform, which includes AVOD (Shahid) and SVOD (Shahid VIP) tiers. The streamer is looking to spend more than $1m/episode on upcoming Original scripted titles and has global ambitions for Shahid as the prominent Arabic-language SVOD. In 2020, it rolled out across Europe and North America.
SPORT IS THE NAME OF THE GAME In a market where monetisation can be difficult, viewers are most willing to pay for sports TV – football, specifically. Qatari-owned sports broadcaster BeIN Sports dominates the regional market, holding rights to most premium games.
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EXCLUSIVE LET’S FACE IT – HOW TO SELL The buying cycle for international content has been relatively simple: agents and distributors source titles from Content Markets, localise them, and sell them as many times as the rights granted allow. However, the demand within the MENA marketplace has changed: OTT platforms and Telcos have started coming in with new budgets and big promises. If you are starting out selling content into the Middle East, it might be worth looking into Mena.tv, which is the region’s first online content marketplace portal. It is working to facilitate greater cooperation between regional buyers and rights holders. The platform allows buyers to search for the types of show they need from a range of vendors – in a secure environment. The platform is free to join for accredited content professionals and is fully bilingual Arabic & English.
Dubbed programmes from Turkey, Korea and India featuring romance and action plots are extremely popular among young people in the MENA region. 54% of respondents watch Turkish series, 18% watch Korean TV and 14% watch Indian shows. Michelle Lin, APAC Manager K7 Media
LOCAL TASTES ON FINISHED TAPES There is a strong appetite for US films and TV series. PayTV platforms like OSN and beIN continue to acquire finished tape programming via agreements with the likes of NBC Universal, Warner Brothers, HBO, Disney, Turner Broadcasting, ESPN, etc. They have also paid for international franchise licenses to help cut through in a noisy market. Dubbed programmes from Turkey, Korea and India featuring romance and action plots are extremely popular among young people in the MENA region. According to a 2017 survey carried out by the Mass Communication department at UAE University, 54% of respondents watch Turkish series, 18% watch Korean TV and 14% watch Indian shows. K-dramas are a contributing factor to Netflix’s overall success in the UAE, as Korean series continue to be in the top 10 most viewed shows in the country. Some of the most streamed series in the UAE include Itaewon Class, Crash Landing on You to name a few. Michelle Lin’s ATF Session, Shinning a Spotlight on the Middle East, she introduces more exclusive information on the unscripted and scripted format that the market has acquired, as well as on the local originals in the region.
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An enjoyable conversation with unique insights into Tubi’s successful markets and genres, and Adam’s love for Asian content
Tubi or Not Tubi, But Definitely Not on Netflix Recent sharp declines in ad budgets have driven top-line shortfalls across the media industry. One platform that has bucked this trend are ad-supported video-on-demand (AVOD).
ADAM LEWINSON, CHIEF CONTENT OFFICER TUBI
BEN GRUBBS, FOUNDER NEXT 10 VENTURES
Adam Lewinson, Chief Content Officer of Tubi, calls AVOD “the future of ad supported television”. Fox Corporation obviously agreed, having recently completed their acquisition of AVOD service Tubi in April this year. Other acquisitions of AVOD services included Comcast’s acquisition of Xumo in February 2020, and ViacomCBS’s acquisition of Pluto TV in March 2019. Tubi is a free streaming service. Rather than competing directly with the likes of subscription-based services Netflix and HBO, Tubi instead pursues a strategy of “super serving underserved audiences”. With a library of over 20,000 older titles, Tubi targets a different audience – as cheekily highlighted with their ‘Not on Netflix’ category. Tubi also serves a different audience from YouTube; while the latter specializes in short form content, Tubi aims for a deep level of engagement with their viewers. The median age of Tubi’s audience is 34 years, younger than most streaming services and definitely than those of linear. Tubi’s streaming experience complements Fox’s more traditional broadcasting lineup. Adam described a global trend where “less
and less is about co-viewing”; rather, streaming is now an individualized experience. Indeed, streaming is not only personalized at the individual, but territory level. For instance, Tubi had developed a Spanish version of their app for Mexico, and they are now looking to other territories. Another of Tubi’s advantage came to play as a result of the pandemic, which had hit a lot of people hard financially. Tubi’s price point of free becomes really appealing, and Adam said it is gratifying when viewers reach back to them. Adam talked candidly about the opportunities Tubi is pursuing in Asia, such as Bollywood content, anime, and Korean dramas. For instance, Tubi is dubbing “An Pan Man” in English and Spanish to offer as an exclusive. Beloved in Asia, the anime is still relatively unknown in the US and Adam is keen to see how well it will take hold over there. He sees high potential and a wide market for anime in the US. While hardcore fans would turn to Crunchyroll for their fix, Tubi is targeting the more casual fan who tends to be more interested in dubbed content.
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A great opportunity listening in on Jon, who leads the newly formed APAC regional business comprising its international sales and distribution business. Moderated by former Netflix CMO, Jackie, the session looked at China & the rest of the region, as it harnesses new leaders under Jon
On Partnering with Others for a Greater Share the growth in OTT services has been enormous in recent years, particularly in Asia – 27 million new OTT customers were added in China alone in 2020. The growth of new OTT customers in China a year is more than the number of currently existing customers in Australia.” – Jon Penn, EVP (APAC), BBC Studios
The BBC is the UK’s most consumed news service. With audience behavior changing over the years, the BBC strives to remain current. Jon Penn (EVP (APAC), BBC Studios) described their four business units: the UK TV production, UK free software and pay TV, international TV production, and global distribution. Underpinning these units are a fifth part of the business, the content investment that fuels their content production. The BBC is involved in a range of partnerships with various producers and broadcasters on different products and REITs. And within their remit in APEC, they had chosen to invest in markets like China, India and Asia Pacific. At the same time, the BBC has to balance the interests of their various customers. Large players such as Amazon, Netflix and Apple are expanding their reach and audience base by acquiring BBC’s content and rights, but the BBC are also maintaining relationships with their original customers and channels who have been with them for many years. Jon noted that the growth in OTT services has been enormous in recent years, particularly in Asia – 27 million new OTT customers were added in China alone in 2020. The growth of new OTT customers in China a year
is more than the number of currently existing customers in Australia. Indeed, Jon pointed out that the OTT market in APEC is going to exceed the size of the US OTT market in 2021. While the BBC generally work as a content creator and provider, they have also dipped their toe in the streaming sandbox recently with BritBox, a subscription video streaming service partnered with ITV. Recognizing the deep production and market potential in China, the BBC is also aiming to become the
media entertainment and industry’s largest partner outside of the studio system. Developing a solid base in China would be a key pillar of growth for the company. They plan to do that by operating across all of their lines of business, from content production, including local co-productions, to distribution. They have also invested in people on the ground; having recently promoted Ding Ke to be SVP and GM for Greater China. She is the first Chinese national and first woman to hold that post.
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CONFERENCE An Inflection Point in the Film Industry The COVID19 pandemic inevitably impacted the film industry, but to what extent and how? In this informative session, Jez Zhang (CEO & Chief Analyst, iiMedia Research Group) presented data-driven insights into the reactions of China’s and the global film industry during and post-lockdown. Spring Festival, a key revenue period for China’s film industry, was strongly impacted this year. Seven films scheduled to be released during the festival had to be postponed or withdrawn. Box office data showed a 99.7% drop from previous year revenue. Cinemas of various sizes were affected, with the small cinemas (<500 seats) the hardest hit (-91.3%). Similar trends were seen worldwide, with many countries reporting declines in box office revenue. The hardest hit in the region were South Korea (-56%) and Japan (-36%). However, while the pandemic had curtailed offline entertainment activities, there was notable growth in online activities. From the last quarter of 2019 to the first quarter of 2020, there was a 31.9% increase in the online entertainment market, which is expected to exceed 500 billion yuan in 2020. The audiences of the top four streaming platforms in China are young: those under 24 years averaged 40%, while those aged 25—30 years averaged 30%. The average time spend online during the Spring Festival of
2020 also increased by 16 minutes compared to 2019. Yet, such trends could be attributed to the exceptional circumstances when people were confined to their homes. Cinemas re-opened 20 July 2020, and within two months, there were 152 million cinema visits, earning 5.1 billion yuan. China’s offline film and TV market is expected to recover rapidly in the second half of 2020. In October 2020, China exceeded North America for the first time to become the world’s largest box office market. However, the online video platforms were important catalysts for changes to China’s film and TV industry. These platforms continue to grow in viewership. Moreover, they provide opportunities for the small and medium-sized film and TV enterprises because of relative ease in investment and production, short operation cycle, and quick payment collection, therefore lowering the threshold to entry. Indeed, the Chinese paid-for online video content market is set to overtake the box office. iQIYI recently increased the price of their membership plans and iiMedia predicts other platforms will soon follow. The overall structure of online entertainment continues to evolve, and even those within the industry are still uncertain as to the final form of the industry’s changes.
A unique peek into the Chinese market and encouraging numbers across its film industry
The overall structure of online entertainment continues to evolve, and even those within the industry are still uncertain as to the final form of the industry’s changes.” – Jez Zhang, CEO & Chief Analyst, iiMedia Research Group
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Encouraging open cooperation, Jimin understands the value to foreign contribution, especially via the likes of co-productions
D2C: Revolutionizing China’s Streaming Shanghai Media Group (SMG) and Oriental Pearl Group (OPG) recently launched its streaming media strategy, BesTV+, in September this year. With already three streaming media giants in China: iQiYi, Youku, and Tencent Video, BesTV+ chose to differentiate itself by pursing a Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) business model. Jimin Fang, Executive Director, BesTV+ Streaming Media, described their strategy. Opting to completely abandon the ‘shelf type’ and ‘supermarket style’ mode, BesTV+ focused instead on customized content creation, content product service and personalized online operation. For instance, “Perfect Summer” is an entertainment show by Dragon TV and SMG. Beyond the show, BesTV+ viewers also have exclusive access to sidelights and clips of stars behind the scene. A customized extended version was produced based on data and user feedback. Such fanservice and active audience involvement had enticed a large number of young users to the streaming service. When schools were closed in China during the COVID19 pandemic, SMG and OPG launched the online education service, “Air Classroom” to local primary and secondary school students in Shanghai. Of the 1.47 million K12 primary and secondary school students, 1.32 million used this service. Even after classes resumed, BesTV+ continued to attract 2250,000 new users. One large advantage of the 18
streaming service is that disadvantage groups in remote and rural areas can utilize the same products as students in urban areas. Jimin noted that when considering D2C mode, traditional media companies should not only consider the viewing value of their content, but also the value to the users – the service should be useful and easy to use. In the D2C model, content is lighter and targeted at users. Leveraging on new media technologies like streaming media, cloud computing, big data and artificial intelligence, BesTV+ aims to integrate their diverse resources and optimize their long and dispersed industrial chain. Users do not only have
When schools were closed in China during the COVID19 pandemic, SMG and OPG launched the online education service, “Air Classroom” to local primary and secondary school students in Shanghai” – Jimin Fang, Executive Director, BesTV+ Streaming Media
access to online content but offline services as well, contained within a convenient and efficient ecosystem. Inspired by the recent success of the newly signed RCEP, Jimin is hopeful that media companies within RCEP countries can share a similar vision of open cooperation. SMG and OPG have developed deep relationships with international media and production companies. For instance, “Born in China” was a co-production between SPG and Disneynature. SMG and OPG thus look forward to working with more Asian partners in providing richer and more localized online and offline services, and cooperating within each other’s OTT spaces.
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Maarten addresses industry evolution and folds in current issues to explain future strategies. Moderated by Rutger Kornman, Senior Manager, Advisory of EY Consulting, the session addressed the issues of collaboration, co-production and acquisition of IPs, as straight up buying and selling can no longer be sustained in a world that is increasingly prone to a bespoke lifestyle
Maneuvering Fast in the Format Industry Maarten Meijs (President Global Entertainment, ITV Studios) discussed the changes in the format industry. He noted that the industry is relatively young, only 25 years old, but has grown substantially over the last decade. Historically, the US, UK and Netherlands had been key players, but more recently, Israel and South Korea are coming into their own. As a rule as well, it has been an industry of linear players, but combinations of linear and nonlinear functions are now in play. When the pandemic lockdowns took place, Maarten said they had to focus on protecting their bigger brands. Fortunately, they found ways to continue, for example through virtual sets. They also made innovative changes to formats to get around travel restrictions. Maarten reflected on some silver linings from the pandemic. For instance, ITV aims to be carbon neutral in the future, and travel is a conundrum. From an environmental perspective, they are exploring 20
solutions that digitization would allow, such as remote editing. ITV is currently doing a lot of work in APEC. They are focusing on nonscripted formats, and they do a lot of local format adaptations. The markets in the region are incredibly diverse and it is important for companies coming in to recognize that. Maarten emphasized the importance of understanding the local marketplace, from macro environmental challenges to local particularities. ITV would travel to the markets to make sure their intel on the ground is correct and meet with the clients to establish relationships. The diverse markets also present opportunities for creativity in content. Maarten said it is incredibly satisfying to go from one version to multiple versions when adapting, “the domino effect”, and to see the successes multiply as well. However, that a program works well in one market is not an automatic
Fortunately, they found ways to continue, for example through virtual sets. They also made innovative changes to formats to get around travel restrictions. ” – Maarten Meijs, President Global Entertainment, ITV Studios
predictor of success in other markets, so producers also need to think of content solutions. They need to think about maneuvering between linear and nonlinear, and the interconnecting dots in between. The content is the glue between different touchpoints. Producers need to think fast and adapt quickly to changes in the format industry, which has traditionally proven to be fast moving.
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A great gathering of format buyers from Vietnam’s TVAd (VTV), Indonesia’s MNC Media, and Japan’s Nippon TV. Moderated by K7 Media’s Victoria De Kerdrel, pressing issues were addressed and practical aspects of format acquisitions were discussed.
Buyers Speak: What Makes an Unscripted Format A Hit Format? In this informative session, buyers revealed candidly what they look for in unscripted formats. Gameshows remain popular. For instance, over half of all formats in Vietnam are gameshows, and there has been an increase in scripted and reality formats. Looking forward, Tran Thi Thuy Linh (TVAD) said these trends are likely to continue. Over in Japan, Nippon TV is known for their hit formats. Yuki Akehi (Nippon TV) commented that international formats they will consider need to be different from local shows. They should have a modern feel and, most importantly, relate to their younger audiences (Nippon’s target audience is aged 13—34 years old). Yet, successful international formats need to also fit the local taste. She gave the example of “Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader”, a unique quiz format from the US that adapted well to Japanese culture. Linh agreed, noting a greater ratio of Asian formats as compared to Western in Vietnam because of better fit with their local culture. This was contrasted to Indonesia, where Agustinus Bagus Abimanyu (MNC Media) said slightly over 60% of formats are Western. All three buyers noted similar shifts in viewing patterns, with more of their viewers moving online. In response, Nippon TV had recently announced a new strategy to grow their digital content. MNC’s Abimanyu said that it is 22
important for their station to expand beyond free-to-air rights to digital. Interestingly, Linh commented that many Vietnamese still like to watch sports and news live, particularly the older folks. The panelists discussed how they evaluate new concepts. Their target audience weigh notably in the buyers’ decisions. Abi also explained that each TV station has a different character and needs, so buyers will consider if elements of the format fit the station. If the format has been successful in other countries, it would be helpful to include these episode samples in the sizzle reel, especially if there
Gameshows remain popular... over half of all formats in Vietnam are gameshows, and there has been an increase in scripted and reality formats.” – Tran Thi Thuy Linh, Vice Manager, Acquisitions & Sales Department, TVAd
are similarities between the other countries and the country the producer is pitching to. The panelists also talked about the process which they consider new formats, with practical tips for interested producers who wish to pitch to them. Finally, Yuki talked about the importance of monetization for the Japanese buyers. They are interested in how they can expand the format to attract a wider audience and sponsors, repackage into original versions and commercials, and/or sell the finished product to other countries while keeping rights to the Japanese version.
YUKI AKEHI, DIRECTOR OF STRATEGIC CORP COMMS
VICTORIA DE KERDREL, APAC CONSULTANT
& MARKETING, INT’L BUSINESS, NIPPON TV
AGUSTINUS BAGUS ABIMANYU, HEAD
TRAN THI THUY LINH, VICE MANAGER
INTERNATIONAL ACQUISITION 3 TV, MNC MEDIA
ACQUISITIONS & SALES DEPARTMENT, TVAD
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An inspiration, Seung-jun maintains a down-to-earth approach despite his unprecedented achievement. A hard subject to address, moderator Christopher Weatherspoon who himself is a Producer and International Media Commerce Strategist, allowed Seung-jun to dive deep into the process of what it took to get somewhere worth the journey, as we look at the Sewol tragedy.
Remaining Relevant The Sewol ferry disaster in 2014 was one of the worst maritime tragedies. Of the nearly 500 passengers, 304 died in the disaster, many of whom were high-school students. However, the suffering of those affected by the disaster did not stop there, and the events surrounding the Sewol tragedy became incredibly sensitive and politically polarizing. Director Yi Seung-jun wanted to tell the story of those who suffered in this tragedy. His short documentary, “In the Absence”, was the first South Korean
film to have been nominated for an Oscar in 2020 (pipping “Parasite” in the queue when the nominations were announced). His documentary stood out from the numerous other documentaries on the Sewol tragedy because while most other works discussed why and how the ferry sank – the reason behind the tragedy – his film focused on the suffering. The origin of the suffering, and the intensity of the agony. Seung-jun started filming in February 2017 and completed the
When making documentaries, aspects of the content centering around universal topics are easier to convey. For instance, it is easy to empathize with the parents who lost their children because that is a feeling that cuts across cultural barriers” – Yi Seung-jun, Director, Bluebird Picures
film in September 2018. He revealed that the most challenging part was editing the film, partly because of the sheer amount of footage and partly because it was hard for him to keep an objective distance from the topic. He worked with Field of Vision, an American partner, who provided an outsider’s perspective. Seung-jun and his producer were familiar with details of the disaster, but their American partners were not and they provided a different view of the whole context. Hiring an American editor also helped to maintain an emotional distance from the film, which is very important when making a documentary. Seung-jun commented that when making documentaries, aspects of the content centering around universal topics are easier to convey. For instance, it is easy to empathize with the parents who lost their children because that is a feeling that cuts across cultural barriers. However, the background context to the Sewol ferry tragedy is localized and cannot be easily conveyed. His work has to deliver both the understanding as well as the emotional aspect of that local context. In this, Seung-jun noted that it is then very helpful to get feedback from varied sources, particularly international perspectives.
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CONFERENCE The Appeal of “Tehran” “Tehran” is a new spy thriller from Apple TV+ about a Mossad agent who slips into Iran. Julien Leroux (CEO & Founder, Paper Entertainment) discussed the success of the highly rated series. Set in Israel and Iran, “Tehran” alternates between English, Hebrew and Farsi. Julien commented that he had always been agnostic when it came to language; indeed, he saw the multilinguistic aspect of the show, that it was set in its original languages as a strength. When he saw the pitch, he was attracted by the strong story and characters. The premise was exciting – a spy trapped in an enemy country. Another key aspect of the content that showed its potential to travel globally include the talent involved in creating the story – Moshe Zonder, the writer for “Fauda”. Finally, the narrative. “It was really all about the story itself,” Julien recalled. He reckoned that what makes a localized story such as “Tehran” travel is the fact that viewers from a country that is not Israel or Iran do not need much local knowledge of those countries to understand the series. The underlying premise has to be universal, drawing viewers into the show. “Tehran” breaks ground as the first non-English series for Apple TV+. Julien was modest about the milestone, noting that the situation in 2020 was unusual. Due to the pandemic, most productions were stopped, and “Tehran” was already produced. It was also notable that Apple would pick up a series that was already broadcast. Julien said closing the deal with Apple, which took many months of negotiations, was about perseverance and being confident in his content. The series premiered September 25. Though the series drew lots of reaction on social media, and feedback from viewers, Julien admitted that he had no metrics on how well the show is doing so far, other than the fact that
A great conversation is never a waste of time: This highly anticipated session was as insightful as it was unassuming. Moderated by Maria Rua Aguete, the conversation touched on real issues, which gave much food for thought
the “trailer on YouTube had been seen more than 30 million times”. Fans will be glad to know Julien can confirm that they are working on a
When he saw the pitch, he was attracted by the strong story and characters.” – Julien Leroux, CEO & Founder, Paper Entertainment
second season. Though the renewal had not been made official yet, he is hopeful that they could announce some good news by the end of the year.
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Michelle Lin of K7 Media hand-picked her highest potential unscripted formats originated from East Asia, South Asia, and Southeast Asia
iQIYI (China) put a twist on their idol talent show by making it completely virtual. While digital avatars have been pop stars before, this is the first time the show centers around the virtual stars.” – Michelle Lin, APAC Manager, K7 Media
Winning Formats Reflect Social Trends Michelle Lin (APAC Manager, K7 Media) presented an array of the most eye-catching unscripted formats from East Asia, South Asia and Southeast Asia. First up were two physical game shows from Japan. Coincidentally, both were based on popular children’s games. The first is “Red Light Green Light” (TV Asahi, Japan), based on the game, Grandmother’s footsteps. The other, called “Gotttttcha!!!” (TBS Japan), drew inspiration from Hide and Seek. Of course, the Japanese producers added their characteristic whacky twists to the simple games. iQIYI (China) put a twist on their idol talent show by making it completely virtual. While digital avatars have been pop stars before, this is the first time
the show centers around the virtual stars. Like ‘real’ talent shows, the three winning virtual idols might go on to their own spin-off shows in the future. There is infinite potential for merchandise and artistic transformation, and the maintenance fee for a virtual idol is less than a real idol. Four formats highlight the shifting societal trends in Asia. Three are entrepreneurial themed: “Project Go” (AXN Philippines), “9 to 5 Trending Now” (TLC India) and “Amazing Market” (Channel 3 Thailand). These shows encourage a positive, bootstrapping attitude towards the economic impact of the current pandemic. In “9 Windows” (Nippon TV), nine contestants are beamed from their homes into the studio on giant screens. (Yes, 2020 is the year we meet
virtually, even on a talent show.) Contestants compete for a cash prize by impressing judges with their unusual hidden talents. “Bet Your Vibe” (CJ ENM, South Korea) is a betting music game show where five contestants not only have to sing well, but also pick up on the vibes of others and bet strategically in order to win. In other words, it’s a game of singing and ‘nunshi’. “Lotto Singer” (FormatEast, South Korea) puts a social media twist on a singing talent show by having the audience score aspiring singers. An innovative marble scoring system is used; the higher the score, the more marbles are rolled into the singer’s box. The sound of the marbles thus hint at the score, which the singer can choose to keep, or trash for another chance to perform.
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Elliot holds an interesting dialogue with moderator Himanshu Shah, Owner of AV8 Media, addressing temporary measures to keep moving forward, and identifying natural evolutions of work processes
A Full Production Studio on (Steroid) Cloud Grabyo is a cloud platform designed to support live production and editing by collating tools that can drive content distribution, content creation and distribution in an integrated framework. Well placed to link to OTT and digital platforms, Grabyo has garnered much interest due to the current social distancing and travelling restrictions. Elliot Renton (Senior Director & Head of APAC, Grabyo) described how their solutions support various components of the production and distribution industry. In the past few years, there has been substantial changes in content consumption. The rapidly changing nature of digital and social media means that more than ever, the media industry must remain nimble and flexible. There is a need to share content in real time and the strain on different businesses along the production chain is huge. Another challenge is that the consumption habits of a viewer in their 40s are vastly different from a viewer in their 30s, not to speak of a viewer in their 20s or teens. Content producers and distributors have to understand these differences and individualize the way they present and serve these different market segments. There is therefore a
need for technologies such as Grabyo that facilitate the collaboration for rapid creation of content, the distribution of content quickly, and to “super serve” individualized content to viewers.
We have already been live for nearly seven years, so it’s not that COVID has suddenly put a spotlight on the need for cloud.” – Elliot Renton, Senior Director & Head of APAC, Grabyo
The winds of change have already been blowing before 2020, but the COVID-19 pandemic had whipped the winds into a gale. Ellliot pointed out that they have already “been live for nearly seven years, so it’s not that COVID has suddenly put a spotlight on the need for cloud”. Rather, we should constantly re-imagine how we can reinvent and add value to current work processes. In the past decade, content production and distribution have hit their stride as a truly globalized exercise of manpower, creativity, and logistics. We have the tools to find innovative ways to produce, to deliver and to align ourselves. Elliot noted that the cloud has allowed users to be very inventive with issues such as various kind of formats, all sorts of audiences, or distribution in real time: “We deconstruct that challenge for customers.” Users are only limited by their imagination
HIMANSHU SHAH, OWNER AV8 MEDIA
ELLIOT RENTON, SNR DIRECTOR & HEAD OF APAC GRABYO
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W H AT D O B U Y E R S WA N T?
Looking for Completed Kids (12 & Under) Content
Kidoodle.TV serves kids under 12 years of age in over 160 countries and seeks completed kids content to complement their large offering to families globally. Serving across all income demographics, the free channel is available on all devices, be it on TV or mobile. The company is dedicated to providing content that meets its Safe Streaming™ standards, seeking to give relief to families looking for better and safer kids’ content. Since the beginning of 2020, it has seen an increase of over 2,000% and now services over 10 million monthly active families.
OF ASIA FOR ASIA: DOCUMENTARIES THAT LOOK EAST Ever wanted to peek into how NASA’s Mars missions work? Taxi Rights’ Deputy CEO & Head of International Distribution, Louis Bernard, excitedly shared, “We had gained a very exclusive access to the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where the mission on Mars is controlled for the documentary, “The Other Side of Mars”. Meanwhile, “FAST, The Celestial Eye”, which will be ready in January is an incredible documentary on the construction of the biggest radio telescope in the world in the heart of China”. Keeping in line with trends in consumer electronics, most of Taxi Rights brand new titles are available in 4K. The company has a strong slate of Nature & Wildlife, Science, 36
Asia is an important market for the company, especially Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan and China, as many of their current productions and programs are directly related to these territories.
“We are always open to content that travels well and partners who are considerate of the dedication we have to keep kids’ Safe Streaming™. We’re really excited to meet with as many of our current and prospective brand owners to strike deals for the content that our audience is seeking,” said Brenda Bisner, Chief Content Officer.
Louis Bernard Deputy CEO & Head of International Distribution Taxi Rights
History, and Arts & Culture content to bring to ATF this year. Asia is an important market for the company, especially Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan and China, as many of their current productions and programs are directly related to these territories. Louis further added that ATF is important to the company as they seek to meet new contacts in TV Channels and OTT platforms within Asia. With the strong relationships they’ve built over the years with Asian buyers, Taxi Rights shared that they are very pliable to price negotiations when it comes to the acquisition of packages.
Brenda Bisner Chief Content Officer Kidoodle.TV (Owned by A Parent Media Co., Inc.)
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VERTICAL STORYTELLING, YOUNG ADULT EUROPEAN CONTENT & HIGH-END DRAMAS The massive hike of foreign content brought about by the likes of Amazon and Netflix coming into Germany offering a wide slate of programming has, according to Nikolaus Sivaloganathan, VP – International Sales and Acquisitions of Beta Film GmbH, definitely opened consumers’ eyes to what else is out there. “Before those two arrived, I had very little conversations with friends and family about programming that was not European or American; mainly about anime from my manga obsessed friends,” said Nikolaus. “But since then, I have been able to talk to people about Korean and Japanese programming, the wide appeal of Turkish dramas, and many more. The conversation has definitely evolved into something more global.” The company’s most successful content worldwide has been its high-end drama series, although they are seeing an uptick in easyto-watch vertical storytelling. In addition, its young adult content from Europe has been well-received in Korea and Japan. Having already had a foothold in Korea, Japan and China, Beta Film GmbH will be focusing on penetrating smaller markets within Southeast Asia, with its proven pricing strategy in tow. “We haven’t really changed our strategy. In Asia, I have always been quite flexible in the way we structure our deals. In the previous year, I did deals on a flat basis, MG plus rev share, as well as only Rev Share basis.”
We haven’t really changed our strategy. In Asia, I have always been quite flexible in the way we structure our deals. In the previous year, I did deals on a flat basis, MG plus rev share, as well as only Rev Share basis. Nikolaus Sivaloganathan VP – International Sales and Acquisitions Beta Film GmbH
W H AT D O B U Y E R S WA N T?
Looking for Stories that Transcend Geographies
MX Player is an Indian video streaming and video-on-demand platform developed by MX Media & Entertainment, with over 280 million users globally. Available across multiple countries, the platform caters to the local audiences and the Indian diaspora in each country. “At MX Player, our promise is to make available the most compelling 40
content not only from India, but also from across the world. At ATF, I am looking for stories which transcend across geographies and resonate with the Indian masses at large,” shared Aaron Mascarenhas, Senior Director, Content Acquisitions at MX Player. With Asian content specifically, there are only a couple of genres like action and romance which has travelled well in India and thus, the challenge here is to widen the appeal of Asian content, he added.
Aaron Mascarenhas Senior Director, Content Acquisitions MX Player
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W H AT D O B U Y E R S WA N T?
Looking for Content that Showcases Asian Diversity
As the second largest independent broadcast group in Brazil, Box Brazil is keen to introduce the diversity of Asian content to Latin America.
Apart from its catalogue that focuses mainly on drama, SIC has had an appeal for long running dramas, which were adapted to shorter versions to meet international demand. This year, the company focused its efforts on producing short series based on real-life events. André Santos Silva Sales Executive SIC International Distribution
PORTUGUESE CONTENT PERFORMS WELL WORLDWIDE “We want to bring the best dramas from Portugal to an international audience. While our dramas are on air in more than 100 countries, only a few are from APAC region. Therefore, our focus is to find new opportunities in Asia and bring our content to the audience in the region,” observed André Santos Silva, Sales Executive, SIC International Distribution. His presence at ATF serves to fortify that. Aside from owning seven cable channels under its brand, SIC also launched its new OTT platform, OPTO, and are moving into the e-Sports ecosystem. “We need to complement and diversify what we do now, keeping the quality and relevance 42
“This year, I’m buying for VOD platforms in Brazil and South America. I’m particularly interested in features, TV movies and documentaries on culture, gastronomy, history and travel from Asia,” said Claudia Dreyer, International Relations Director for Grupo Box Brazil. Sharing tips to break into the Latin America market, Claudia shared that even though there are more Spanish translated content, Brazil is the biggest buyer in South America and whatever succeeds in Brazil, also succeeds in Latin America. Preferably, content should be translated directly from source language into Portuguese, she added.
of our content, towards a total video offering.” Apart from its catalogue that focuses mainly on drama, SIC has had an appeal for long running dramas, which were adapted to shorter versions to meet international demand. This year, the company focused its efforts on producing short series based on real-life events, which will first premiere on the OPTO platform. As André rightly put it, “Whenever there’s relevant content, people want to watch and follow it in linear consumption, as well as on any other platforms. TV has a mandatory role in aggregating and engaging audiences and in social relevance. This won’t disappear.”
Claudia Dreyer International Relations Director Grupo Box Brazil
POPULAR GENRES: FACTUAL DRAMA, DOCUMENTARIES, HISTORICAL SERIES, & NATURE PROGRAMMES Looking to Asia, Craig Nayman, Director of MCG Programming Pte Ltd, is geared up at the prospects of embracing the cultural diversity of the continent.
stretch that much further, especially with TV/Media companies that rely on a proportion of their income from advertising.
“The market is far more sophisticated now. Technology has transformed how broadcasters and audiences connect. The advent of streaming platforms, VOD platforms, catch-up services, and subscription operators have created a wealth of opportunities for content owners. I believe there is a genuine curiosity that exists in Asia, which in turn fuels a need for foreign culture, including content.”
“The good news is that overall global TV viewing across all devices is up, so there is definitely an appetite from consumers to watch great content. With this, the basics of selling rights look after themselves.”
For MCG Programming Pte Ltd, factual drama, documentaries, historical series, and nature programmes are genres that are doing well at this time. In terms of price conscious, this year has created additional pressures on programme budgets, with budgets having to
Keen to further expand its acquisition and distribution partnerships, the company is uniquely positioned to acquire content on behalf of the broadcasters represented and distribute content on behalf of rights owners.
Craig Nayman Director MCG Programming Pte Ltd
FORMATS & ANIMATION: BIG IN KOREA; NOW THE REST OF ASIA Fiona Railane, Sales Executive of Lagardere Studios Distribution added, “India is a new challenge as a country that produces a lot. We see great opportunities particularly for format deals and animation. We are already in contact with some producers and continuing to search for new partnerships.
Fiona Railane Sales Executive Lagardere Studios Distribution
Lagardere Studios Distribution’s success in South Korea has largely been attributed to its great selection of documentaries and strong collaborations with Korean broadcasters; something they are looking to renew at ATF 2020.
Given the t of a “real” market in 2020, and the absence of “real” meetings, the company has been creative in maintaining relationships with clients in new ways and considers it essential to have ATF ONLINE+ as a highlight of the year.
“Also, it is interesting to note that AVOD and FVOD has become increasingly important for broadcasters. It could be an issue because, as a distributor, we work with channels and platforms. It is sometimes a challenge to conciliate the two types of exploitation.” Two new content that Fiona is excited about is their 8-hour epic period drama, “Ines Del Alma Mia”, based on a true story of a 16th century woman who ends up participating in the conquest of Chile; and “Penny on Mars”, a live-action series targeting kids, telling a tale of a girl and her friend attending M.A.R.S, the most important school of Music and Arts. 43
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MAKING JAPANESE CONTENT GLOBAL In this age of disruption, Kansai Television is boldly trying out new ways of doing business. While TV stations in Japan tend to make content based on domestic needs and sell it abroad, Kansai Television instead is eager to develop content aimed at international markets right from the beginning, by working with international business partners. An early measure of success has been their selection as a finalist of the ATF Formats pitch with, “Quiz Go Round”, their first paper format aimed at international markets from the start. With the growth of the OTT market in Southeast Asia and the world, Kansai Television believes that unique concepts with global appeal will be more sought after. With Japan’s long history of storytelling – love stories in Japan were first written more than a millennia ago – Japanese drama script has a great following in the global market. This too, bodes well for Kansai Television’s focus on selling scripts and finished Japanese programmes. At ATF 2020, one of their objectives is to also find TV stations and production studios, which are interested in adapting their current content.
With Japan’s long history of storytelling – love stories in Japan were first written more than a millennia ago – Japanese drama script has a great following in the global market. Chaewon Kim Global Sales Manager Kansai Television Co. Ltd
NEW SOUNDS FROM SV-KADR
Anna Lazutkina Producer SV-kadr
Anna Lazutkina, Producer at SV-kadr, has been keeping busy with the high demand for dubbed content. As with content in the past, content for the Russian market is dubbed, as the Russian audience tend to favour dubbed content, while subtitles and content in original language appeals to a relatively niche audience.
the first wave of (non-) official localised foreign content, which was later substituted by a revival of the domestic film industry. These days, foreign producers have set high standards for content quality, which has indeed spoilt Russian consumers and motivated the local industry to keep up with the competitors.
“At the same time, content nowadays comes in more formats and genres. In order to adapt to new requirements, businesses have to be flexible, and we enjoy the challenge. Recruiting young and creative team members to keep our skillset fresh is key to not fall behind.”
“For our team, it means that expectations for dubbing and localisation quality is higher than ever. It allows us to utilise our main competitive advantages, including above all, our unique voice talent pool.”
The evolution of the video content market in Russia is cyclical. The late 80s featured
At ATF, the company hopes to find new clients in Asia and Europe and serve as an intermedium by providing quality localisation services.
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BELIANE, BOUTIQUE DISTRIBUTOR WITH BIG AMBITIONS Newcomer to ATF, Beliane might be a boutique distribution company with a smaller volume of content, but it is no small fry when it comes to working with partners in Japan, Taiwan, North and South America. “I now believe my catalogue of documentaries and animation may fit more of what Asian buyers and audiences are seeking. I know my programmes; know why I took them into my catalogue and know the reasons why I think it should be pitched to a specific broadcaster. And very often, a detail in the programme will make the difference between a nice-to-have programme and a must-have,” explained Anne Littardi, Managing Director, Acquisition & Sales, Beliane. Over time, documentaries have become more formatted and better because of the fierce competition, forcing broadcasters and platforms to raise standards. In addition, all the rights requested by broadcasters or platforms are, according to Anne, extraterritorial and multi-lingual, which is complex to handle.
Anne Littardi Managing Director, Acquisition & Sales Beliane
Proving her vast knowledge of both sides of the coin, she said, “The competition between sellers is huge, meaning that buyers have more choices than ever. Prices are harder to
negotiate now. And the question of additional rights (online) has become such an issue – the duration requested, the languages, the territories and the money paid for these.”
STUDIOCANAL TV: SHAKING UP THE MARKET There has been a hike in the demand for content worldwide. Current circumstances are opening opportunities for local broadcasters and platforms to deviate from their standard acquisitions model and trial more unique content with their audiences.
Beatriz Campos SVP Global Content & Production Financing StudioCanal TV GmbH
“Outside local content, English language series continue to be most sought-after across Asia, with US and UK dramas dominating the foreign acquisitions landscape. However, the boom of European drama and its increasing production budgets, is opening new opportunities in the region. Large scale productions and compelling storylines can now compete with major US series and have subsequently helped to break down language barriers, with many using the opportunity to acquire more foreign language dramas,” remarked Beatriz Campos, SVP Global Content and Production Financing, StudioCanal TV GmbH.
“We are finding more broadcasters launching these productions in their prime-time slots normally reserved for the major US series with equally successful ratings.” Expectedly, difficult times also bring about a very cautious approach to spending. An important factor is, according to Beatriz, is being able to find the right home and exposure for content. StudioCanal TV has also responded to the rising trend of short-form content. It now has its own original branding in-house with Creation Decalee, which has birthed titles like, “Calls” and “The Collapse”. “It is very encouraging to see platforms spending equal budgets in promoting these franchises, which have travelled fantastically well and performed at an exceptional level inside and outside their commissioning territory.”
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FLEXIBLE IN NEGOTIATIONS: IT’S ALL ABOUT WHAT THE BUYERS WANT Over the past few years, audiences’ interests have changed in terms of their TV consumption habits. The leading position that TV has had in the past in capturing audience share is under question now, especially with this generation. “I believe the entire industry should make an extra effort to adapt creatively to these changes. Creativity is the key and price should be less of a decisive factor than it has been in the past years,” said Pablo Alemán, MD & Head of International Sales, Wild Stories Distribution. While Europe is the most ‘immediate’ market for the European distribution company, Asia is becoming a strategic market as well, especially due to the region’s growing appetite for quality wildlife and 4K content, which is reflected in Wild Stories’ catalogue. “Wildlife content leads our sales strategy in Asia, hence we pay special attention to wildlife content when it comes to the Asian market.” When it comes to selling rights, Wild Stories’ concentrates its efforts in offering the best content possible to its clients, adapting to their needs regarding rights acquisition. All this, while being reasonably flexible in negotiations.
Pablo Alemán MD & Head of International Sales Wild Stories Distribution
DELVING DEEP INTO ASIAN TERRITORIES For EBS (Korea Educational Broadcasting System), it has only been about five years since the company started to focus on Asian territories. However, they have gotten off to a running start, launching EBS Animation Branded Block on VTV7 in Vietnam and working with Vietnam, Cambodia and Myanmar coproductions. EBS also has an ongoing coproduction project with a Thai broadcaster.
Suna Kim Marketing Manager Global Business Department EBS (Korea Educational Broadcasting System)
“We are focusing more on Cambodia, Malaysia and Philippines. For Cambodia, we are working on launching Educational Broadcasting System,” shared Suna Kim, Marketing Manager, Global Business Department, EBS (Korea Educational Broadcasting System), who added that Malaysia and Philippines are markets they have yet to work with.
Documentaries and children’s programmes are key for EBS, and unlike dramas and entertainment content, there are no specific trends and can be consumed by all target groups long-term. “Qin Shi Huang, the King of Eternal Empire”, which is a co-production project with SMG of China, is one of its most popular content. Suna also noted that consumers are always looking for something new and fresh. While the increase in foreign content in the Korean market can be a challenge for a broadcaster, “This gives more opportunities to various content for consumers. In addition to that, retro content, whether Korean or foreign, seems to be coming back these days.”
A DASH OF MAGIC & A PINCH OF LAUGHTER
“Everybody needs a good laugh and a bit of magic, especially nowadays,” enthused Alice Curie, International Sales Manager at Planet Nemo by Ankama, who will be bringing their latest in-house production Abraca, where a teenage witch and a geeky boy meet up to help modern and funny twists of classic fairy tales.
Having concluded several successful deals in China in last few years, Planet Nemo by Ankama is excited to attend the online version of ATF this year to catch-up and meet with new buyers. Although they are in touch with several clients in Malaysia, Brunei, Vietnam, Indonesia, Hong Kong and Taiwan, Alice added that ATF is a not-to-be-missed event for them in order to expand to even more territories. With a wide range of animation content, from series to movies, 2D to 3D and for preschool to adults, the company shared that rights are dependent on each show, and a full list per country will be provided to all clients.
Alice Curie International Sales Manager Planet Nemo
W H AT D O B U Y E R S WA N T?
Do You Have a Commercial Movie for Us?
Skyline Media is looking for commercial movies for TV and VOD platforms with exclusive rights for Vietnam. “I prefer markets in Asia because we have more choices for our clients. Asian films are more popular in Vietnam, especially from Korea, Thailand, China and Hong Kong. We also source for US and Canadian commercial movies and are open to upcoming movies for cinema
releases so long as they are commercial to the mass audience. Pre-sales can also be considered for new films to be released in cinemas, but we want to watch draft cuts at least to decide,” said Hang Trinh, CEO of Skyline Media. One challenge she faces is to pick suitable films to balance between price, commercial elements and audience taste. Due to Covid-19, there are lesser commercial films available, but their clients are still seeking for higher quality films than before. Hang Trinh CEO Skyline Media 49
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W H AT D O B U Y E R S WA N T?
Turkish Buyer Seeking ReadyMade Asian Content & New Titles
Adem Uysal from TV+, a first timer at ATF, is excited at the opportunity to get familiarised with the Asian content and market. He shared that, “Primarily we are interested in VOD rights of readymade content and only for the territory of Turkey. For new titles, we are looking for some exclusivity.”
ANIMATION, WITH AN ADDED TWIST While the first thing that comes to mind when we hear the word ‘Animation’ is fun and laughter, Media Foundation’s cartoons, according to Vasily Nizhegorodov, its General Director, also expresses the values of sports and a healthy lifestyle. “We occupy the niche of promoting healthy lifestyles and sports through the animated series “Sportania”. Such values must be instilled in children without looking at their nationality, social status and religion. Sportania is a cartoon that is understandable to every child all over the world, which not only carries an entertainment component, but also forms the rules of healthy behaviour and respect for their health,” said Vasily, who 50
For Media Foundation, the ideology is to create quality content with an eye on pressing social issues, and the company is on top of changing trends, using modern software to improve the quality of content and optimise deadlines. Vasily Nizhegorodov General Director Media Foundation
Acknowledging that competition in the industry is stiff, Adem believes that being at ATF will allow him to sift through high quality content and act quickly. In a game of fastest fingers first, they need to act quickly in order not to miss content that suits their viewers’ tastes. Ideally, matchmakings, one-to-one meetings and visual presentations are his preferred way to find and view content which they need.
added that global buyers are paying less and less attention to the educational content, and tending to lean towards entertaining formats. For Media Foundation, the ideology is to create quality content with an eye on pressing social issues, and the company is on top of changing trends, using modern software to improve the quality of content and optimise deadlines. “At ATF, we’re looking for partnership agreements for the production and distribution of animated content, as well as attracting investments for the creation of a full-length 2D or 3D cartoon and animated series.”
Adem Uysal Lead Content Strategy & Acquisition Manager TV+
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NOW MORE THAN EVER: HIGHEST QUALITY CONTENT FOR KIDS AROUND THE WORLD In this age of home schooling and isolation, parents are turning to readymade content in the form of educational shows, YouTube tutorials and more, to satisfy their kids. Consequently, parents have never been more hands-on with the content their children consume and their desire is increasing for a steady stream of new, diverse, and informative content, as kids start to carve out their lives in this “new normal”. Having made inroads into Southeast Asia, the company is now increasing its focus in the region at ATF with numerous titles, including brand-new pre-school series, “Donkey Hodie”, “Bad Nature”, and more. As the ever-changing industry continues turning its wheels, the company remains open to collaborating with key partners and exploring flexible business models with buyers. “The nature of the animation industry is rapidly changing as viewers and audiences continue to find new and different ways to access content. As the need for exclusive windows diminishes, and we see markets becoming more friendly to non-exclusives,
Federico Vargas VP Distribution 9 Story Media Group
this presents an opportunity to layer content across different windows: YouTube, AVOD, SVOD, and Pay TV, which in turn leads to reduced acquisition budgets for buyers,” observed Federico Vargas, VP Distribution, 9 Story Media Group.
“As we continue to witness the ever-changing effects of COVID on our business and the market, our main goal is the same as it has always been: to deliver the highest quality content to kids around the world, who need it now more than ever.”
W H AT D O B U Y E R S WA N T?
International Distributor Advises Content Creators: Create Programs with Universal Appeal Catriona McNeish, Head of APAC for TVF International, shared that “A lot of content is produced primarily for local audiences, and may not resonate with global audiences, due to production style and language barriers. However, alongside acquiring completed content, we frequently advise on programme
development at early stages, and often reversion completed content in-house, to ensure that programmes can have the widest possible international appeal.” The company is after high quality factual productions including wildlife, current affairs, history, science and lifestyle programming. Julian Chou, Acquisitions Manager of TVF International added that they acquire all exclusive rights for international distribution with some territory exclusions allowed. They also frequently broker pre-sales and co-productions for select projects.
*Responsible for sourcing content from China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, India & Singapore specifically) 52
Julian Chou-Lambert Acquisitions Manager TVF International*
Catriona McNeish Head of APAC TVF International
VISION FILMS STAYS AHEAD OF THE CURVE While traditional TV Channels are continuing to license tried and true mainstream programming, the advent of SVOD and AVOD platforms all over the world has given rise to the opportunity for Vision Films to license a larger variety of content. “In view of the current state of the world, people are learning to consume content in many different ways, particularly with the emergence of OTT platforms in those particular territories, so we are hoping learn more about the new channels and their needs,” said Lisa Romanoff, Managing Director & CEO, Worldwide Distribution, Vision Films. “The conventional windowing system has completely changed and in order to maximize revenue for our titles, we’ve had to be creative, particularly when it comes to the OTT rights versus the TV rights.” To Lisa, it appears that South Korea, Japan, Indonesia, Vietnam and Singapore are the most active buying territories, and being at
ATF is a good opportunity to license their library of feature films and documentaries. While market diversity leads to varied needs, Vision Films has, according to Lisa, always been ahead of the curve in understanding the marketplace, nurturing partnerships with broadcasters and distributors alike, therefore curating content specific to each buyer.
In view of the current state of the world, people are learning to consume content in many different ways, particularly with the emergence of OTT platforms in those particular territories, so we are hoping learn more about the new channels and their needs. Lise Romanoff Managing Director & CEO, Worldwide Distribution Vision Films
MORE CRIME & EXCITEMENT FROM ZDF ENTERPRISES “Great content can always find a place no matter where it comes from. One example is our hit show “Bron/Broen/The Bridge” that sold to more than 160 territories worldwide and is still very popular around the globe. People want to see great content no matter where it comes from, and this creates a lot of opportunities for international content,” said Yuliya Fischer, Director Sales and Acquisitions ZDFE.drama, ZDF Enterprises.
Yuliya Fischer Director Sales & Acquisitions (ZDFE.drama) ZDF Enterprises
ZDF Enterprises comes to ATF this year with a strong slate in tow, which includes latest Danish crime series, “Grow”, Italian crime series, “Standing Tall” and English light drama mini-series, “The South Westerlies”.
The company’s rich and diverse catalogue offers content from all over the world to suit its audiences’ appetite for something exotic and different.
With its genre strength being crime and investigation shows like “Crimson Rivers”, “Before we die”, “Wild District”, and “Welcome to Texas”, it is no surprise that ZDF Enterprises’ content has been sold to Japan, Taiwan, Australia, Russia, Denmark, Middle East and many more territories. At ATF, Yuliya believes that it is the best market for connecting with Asian partners to deepen existing relationships and establishing new ones. 53
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ASIAN CLIENTS SHINE THROUGH
The growing stable of Asian clients for Arait Multimedia has made ATF become one of their most important markets to attend in the last five years. Aitor Garcia Merino, CEO of Arait Multimedia proudly shared, “Asia was our most successful region for us during this difficult 2020 and we hope to keep or improve on those results during 2021.”
Nonetheless, they are aware that TV channels have had to reduce their budgets and looking to fill certain time slots with low cost content. Fortunately, producers also do understand the current situation and thus are more open to accept lower prices than before, especially if acquisition was done in volume. Aitor shared that they recently concluded some deals that would be impossible in the past based on the license fees offered by the broadcasters.
THE HAUNTED HEART 30x60´ (Releasing in 2021) Fantasy & Romance EI Xiao-Ling, a spirit whisperer, becomes the CEO in a cutting-edge gaming company after she accidentally casts her boss’ spirit out of his body.
At ATF this year, Arait Multimedia aims to highlight “The Haunted Heart”, a Taiwanese drama series that premiered in September and would soon be released on HBO GO. With its diverse portfolio, the company will also be featuring a European animation series targeting kids (4—8 years old) and a new drama line up from Turkey, Russia, Spain and Portugal.
She partners up with him (SHI Da yong), now in the spirit form, to retrieve his “dying thought”. They only have 49 days to restore his soul back to the body before it rots away. Meanwhile, Xiao-Ling also confides in psychologist, HO Ching Fung, to diagnose and “cure” her from her condition. She finds herself torn between falling for Ching-Fung’s calm and gentle touch or Dayong’s bold and fearless resolve. Navigating the fine line of trust and betrayals, Xiao-Ling eventually finds love and acceptance in the most unexpected places.
HEADQUARTERS C/ Estudio, 25 · 28023 Aravaca (Madrid) Spain TLF: +34 913 573 200 FAX: +34 913 573 814 Aitor García Merino firstname.lastname@example.org Joquín G. Garrido email@example.com
Aitor Garcia Merino CEO Arait Multimedia
PARIS OFFICE Anha benessalah firstname.lastname@example.org ALMATY OFFICE Aidana kasymbaeva email@example.com www.araitmultimedia.es
ROMANCING ASIA WITH MEXICAN TELENOVELAS “We have been attending ATF for many years, which allows us to showcase our latest drama productions,” said Mario Castro, Sales Director Asia & Africa of Televisa, who added that attending ATF gives the company the opportunity to get a feel of the Asian market with regards to the various platforms. For Mario, he believes that local free-to-air TV Channels have changed in past 10 over years.
There are now opportunities to do business with OTTs in the region, although the OTTs must have large catalogues of various types of content. Mario Castro Sales Director Asia & Africa Televisa 54
While these channels used to acquire content from Televisa, they have started to develop their own local productions and as a result, are acquiring less foreign productions. “There are now opportunities to do business with OTTs in the region, although the OTTs must have large catalogues of various types of content.” A hike of foreign content into Mexico, according to Mario, is owing to the new free-to-air TV channel, Imagen TV, which although produces news and morning shows, mainly airs ready-made foreign content. However, Mario feels that local productions still dominate each market. Being the market leader for telenovelas, or better known to most as love stories, Televisa is producing 25-, 60-, 80-, or even 90-episode versions of their dramas to make them more attractive to audiences and various platforms.
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MORE TO EXPECT FROM THE PHILIPPINES’ GMA NETWORK If you haven’t heard of the famous Korean drama hit, “Descendants of the Sun”, you might have been living under a rock. Moving forward to 2020, GMA Network Inc, riding on its genre strength in dramas, adapted the hit series and aired it February. “Being the largest TV network in the country allows us to forge partnerships or collaborations on a regional level and jointly produce content targeted specifically for multiple territories or platforms. This allows us to produce and distribute content that’s globally accepted,” shared Roxanne J. Barcelona, Vice President Worldwide Division, GMA Network, Inc.
We are seeing more and more interest for our content from OTT players in the region. There are also quite a number of inquiries for co-productions and acquisition of our drama formats.
Celebrating its 70th anniversary this year, GMA launched a DTT service via GMA’s Affordabox, a plug-and-play device where viewers can watch all the free digital channels. Alongside the Affordabox comes the Heart of Asia DTT channel, featuring Asian dramas. To meet demands from the Korean wave amongst its audience, Hallypop!, was also launched and offers Korean variety shows and programmes.
these are the territories whose audiences’ drama tastes are similar to those we produce.
GMA’s focus at ATF this year would be on regions such as Asia, LATAM and Africa, as
“We are seeing more and more interest for our content from OTT players in the region.
Roxanne J. Barcelona Vice President Worldwide Division GMA Network, Inc
There are also quite a number of inquiries for co-productions and acquisition of our drama formats. Buyers want all content rights so one must be creative in offering the content buyer only what they need.”
ANIMATION DOMINATION Inspiring content is king, and for Elisabeth Kayali, Sales & Business Affairs Manager, at MIAM ! animation, the culture of quality animation is getting stronger, and expectations are getting higher.
Elisabeth Kayali Sales & Business Affairs Manager MIAM ! animation
Boasting themes in its catalogue that includes ecology, empathy, feminism, and a mix of cultures – which can be addressed to everyone regardless of language – Elisabeth believes in creating a diversified and strong environment for each one of their properties. Even more so this year, where buyers will more than ever need inspiring content for kids and their parents. “To adapt to the screening trends where kids want to share time with their favourite heroes everywhere and on every device, we
have developed additional content that we offer along with our shows, via games, shorts, colouring books, karaoke, dedicated gaming apps, etc.” On SVOD platforms entering the French market, Elisabeth believes that “As a producer and a distributor, we are open to foreign content, especially Asian content.” Despite establishing success in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, where most of its content is currently sold, MIAM ! animation is not about to rest on its laurels just yet. It has a slate of content in the pipeline, which includes production of its first 3D preschool show, “Edmond and Lucy” (52 x 12’), scheduled for the Summer of 2022.
JAPANESE FORMATS FOR AN INDIAN MARKET Hilarious game shows formats are undoubtedly one of Japan’s strength and Tokyo Broadcasting System Television (TBS) is keen to see some of theirs travel the world. Jungsoo Kim, Program Sales shared that the company is extremely keen to license their formats into new territories and increase program sales to OTT platforms at ATF. Highlighting India as one of the markets with great potential, Jungsoo shared, “The Asian market is incredibly ripe for experimentation, so Asian broadcasters like TBS never rest on their successes but continue to try new programming to find the next big thing.” Even successful programs are rebooted or tweaked continuously to keep them fresh for the audience. One such example is their new format, “Cast Wars”, a hilarious gameshow that lets broadcasters or producers promote their latest shows in a fresh way. The format is based on the long running Japanese game, “Tokyo Friendly Park” and that was refreshed in 2017 after a 17year run. Celebrities from the latest TV shows are invited to tackle games one by one, working as a team to win prizes at the end of the show. This allows, for example, a leading actor who plays a serious and strict persona suddenly revealing a completely different side to him.
GROWING THE ASIAN MARKET AT ATF Prime Entertainment’s International Sales Manager, Joséphine Brunn, shared the company’s focus at ATF this year. “Being an international distributor, we have a strong presence in Europe and North America, but the Asian market has always been a very important part of our business strategy.
Being at ATF allows us to reinforce our presence in Asia. ATF allows us to keep in touch with regular clients, supplying them with quality programming while seeking and on-boarding new clients from Asia. Joséphine Brunn International Sales Manager Prime Entertainment
“Being at ATF allows us to reinforce our presence in Asia. ATF allows us to keep in touch with regular clients, supplying them with quality programming while seeking and on-boarding new clients from Asia.” The company’s catalogue is ever-increasing to include new content in various categories, such as short-form stories, new episodes for “Hollywood on Set”, animation series and oneoffs, such as “Ariol” and “Vanille, a Caribbean Tale”. For music lovers starved of attending music festivals, the company has also grown its list of live concerts in 4K. Amongst some of their bestselling content are the entertainment series, factual and animation. 57
DAY 2 ONLINE
Being someone’s first love is a dream. Being someone’s last is true love. Pitcha longs for loyalty from her husband, Pamorn. Both are selfcentred, and she only focuses on her career. Eventually, their marriage fails. Nursing a broken heart, Pitcha is afraid to fall in love again. Ramin, an outspoken lawyer who takes care of her lawsuit, is a man who does not wish to possess anyone for love. Despite not having a good start, Ramin finds himself falling desperately in love with Pitcha, the only woman he allowed into his heart.
Treehouse Detectives is a pre-school series, which follows brother and sister detective team, Toby and Teri, as they explore the world around them. The show examines the mysteries of nature through the eyes of lovable characters who analyse everything from a mysterious talking rock, to the disappearance of a sandcastle during a full moon. The Treehouse Detectives “use the clues” and “follow the facts” to solve the case every time! COMPANY: ENPOP
COMPANY: JKN GLOBAL MEDIA PCL
MICROKILLERS Progress in globalisation does not guarantee the survival of our species on a planet still dominated by microkillers. The biological threat is composed of viruses, bacteria and parasites that have accompanied us since the beginning of time. But their epidemic potential represents a new challenge in a hyper-connected and fast-moving world. Emerging diseases, global health alerts, unknown viruses, new species of transmitter insects... Now, Spanish researcher Pilar Mateo is journeying to places where our species’ health is in jeopardy. COMPANY: ONZA DISTRIBUTION
COFFEE HOUR CONTENT SHOWCASE Just Japanese @ DEC 3!
Perhaps a Japanese coffee jelly shot?
FRESH CONTENT FROM JAPAN-PART 1: SCRIPTED FRESH CONTENT FROM JAPAN-PART 2: UNSCRIPTED 60
Dec 3 @ 2pm & 2.30pm!
Telling you whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s going on with content in Asia and what it all means. On the ground in Asia. All day. Every day. C
For more info, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
DAY 2 ONLINE
DUMPER & SKOOP SEASON 2 What do all toys do when nobody is home? Have fun, of course! And that’s exactly what Oscar’s playful construction toys, Dumper and Skoop, get up to when he’s not around. Join the adventures of lazy Dumper, bossy Skoop, and their friends Whirly and Waa, as they play and learn together. Meet their mighty 3D printer called MakeM8, along with the mischievous wind-up toy mice, Plink and Plonk. Inevitably their adventures end up making a mess, so the toy pals must work together quickly to tidy up before Oscar’s mum tries to pack them all away into storage!
ROMEO AND THE BLACK BROTHERS Based on The Black Brothers, a children’s book written by German writer, Lisa Tetzner. 11-year-old Romeo comes to Milan after selling himself into slavery to make money for his father’s medical treatment. As a chimney sweeper, Romeo faces many hardships and abuse, especially from his master’s family and a gang known as the Wolf Pack. Produced in 1995 and remastered into HD to be once again enjoyed by fans, old and new. COMPANY: NIPPON ANIMATION CO LTD
COMPANY: PLANET NEMO BY ANKAMA
FRUITS COMMANDO In a mysterious forest, a kind and lively fruit race has been living a leisurely life for generations. With intelligence and excellent manipulative ability, they establish their fruit civilisation gradually within this forest and understand how to live harmoniously with Mother Nature. Enter Dr Redbeard, who is trying to sinks his devilish claws in this paradise for his greed. The 3 green hand students of fruit institute join the secret squad – Fruits Commando, to foil the evil schemes of Dr Redbeard over and over again. COMPANY: HYPER DIMENSION INTERACTIVE ENTERTAINMENT CO., LTD
COFFEE HOUR CONTENT SHOWCASE
Daily from 2pm—5pm
A cup of Turkish coffee for a 30-min show?
FRESH CONTENT FROM TURKEY: THE LAND OF ENDLESS CONTENT Dec 3, 2020 @ 3.30pm—4pm 62
It’s a Virtual NATPE Miami, and VideoAge
will be on every Buyer’s Virtual Door
DAY 2 ONLINE
Tuktakman is a 3D animation series targeting children 3—5 years old. Tuktakman and Totoman broke the magical crystal ball and as a punishment, they were sent to earth to find all the pieces. They land in a kindergarten and meet a group of toys. Tuktakman and their toy friends have now begun their story. COMPANY: FZ ENTERTAINMENT CO LTD
Mashimaro, also known as, “hoodlum rabbit”, is a clever rabbit who is white, with short legs, a fat body, squinty eyes, and at the same time, looks lovely. Although he is naughty and mischievous, he is very supportive of his friends at critical moments, and he has the super ability to make people laugh and cry. Come join in his hilarious, mischievous, and yet, heart-warming adventures. COMPANY: HANGZHOU STEAMWORKS CREATIVE CO LTD
TOM’S TINY TOYS When Tom Schneider and his parents moved into a new house, Tom discovered a dusty box in the attic. The lid was stuck shut, but Tom managed to pop it open. When he did, a golden light shone out! Inside, he found five cool looking toys. Fascinated, Tom took the toys to his bedroom and lined them up on his shelf. Later that night, Tom woke to a noise in his bedroom to discover the toys he had found were alive! COMPANY: JY ANIMATION INC.
COFFEE HOUR CONTENT SHOWCASE
4pm Russian Time!
Time for The Raf and your dose of Russian content:
SPOTLIGHT ON MOSCOW ANIMATION 64
@ Dec 3
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CHARM OF CHINA The “Charm of China” is a documentary based on the most representative intangible cultural heritage projects of 55 ethnic minorities and other unique cultural contents of ethnic minorities. It focuses on the theme of sedimentation, gestation and inheritance. The multi-integrated national culture inherits, deeply explores the true nature of Chinese culture, and records the historical memory and cultural heritage of Chinese ethnic minorities, as well as their firm watch on their national culture.
OFF THE GRID They return to the basics and wish to develop their own ways of life and attitude. People call them the “off-gridders”. Cutting off urban supplies of water and electricity, they instead make use of the materials in nature. So why do they do it? How do they cope with these challenges, which may be outside our normal comfort zone? COMPANY: LIGHTNING INTERNATIONAL LIMITED
COMPANY: CHINA BROADCAST & TV CULTURE (QINGDAO) CO LTD
SPACE SPECTACLE: LIFE IN THE UNIVERSE Life and the universe are more connected than we ever imagined. The black hole is not the antithesis of life but may have had a role in the physical make-up of our bodies. Also, “we are not alone”. In fact, scientists now believe that there are numerous planets with life throughout the universe. Space Spectacle follows the latest observation technologies, breaking new grounds in our understanding of the cosmos, a journey spanning 13.8 billion years. COMPANY:NHK ENTERPRISES, INC.
COFFEE HOUR CONTENT SHOWCASE China Special! Daily @ 3pm!
Grab a coffee for your daily China fix on:
FRESH CONTENT CHINA: Dramas @ Dec 1 Documentaries @ Dec 2 Animation @ Dec 3
• Program Listings • Daily News • Digital Editions and much more…
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HOW TO BE A GOOD HUSBAND
A never-heard-of guide to be a good husband! From ‘tricky’ husbands Shin and Dong-yup, to ‘sweet’ husband Sean, we observe the daily lives of three celebrity couples each week. Hear their confessions and honest advice about marriage and relationships with each other. There’s a newlywed, a couple who married late and had a child in their 50s, and a couple who shared all sorts of hardships. It’s a great joy not only to watch them, but also to see them get together and share their experiences.
In the year 1946, demon girl, Si Teng, was killed by Reverend Tian Shi in the town of Shanghai. In 2013, Qin Fang and his fiancée heads to the West to search for a benefactor. On the way there, a car accident occurs. A drop of blood from Qin Fang resurrects the demon girl who was buried in the ground. In 1937, Si Teng disregarded Qin Fang’s instructions and carried out her revenge plans. Si Teng tries all ways to break away from Bai Ying’s control. However, she gradually finds out that 70 years ago, her fate, as well as that of Qin Fang’s, has already been arranged.
COMPANY: CENTURY UU (TIAN JIN) CULTURAL COMMUNICATION CORP. LTD
GO GO DINO S5 Continuing their mission to protect all the residents in Ururu Planet, Rex and Go Go Dino explorers met their new friends Andy, Joy and Lucas, who’re full of curiosity and fantasy about dinosaurs when Rex was working as a narrator in the museum. For his new friends’ better understanding of dinosaurs, Rex suggested that the three kids join him at Ururu Planet personally by travelling through a secret passage of the museum. What thrilling adventures will the kids have? What will they learn about dinosaurs? Come and join us at Go Go Dino Season 5! COMPANY: GUANGZHOU LOTTA ANIMATION DESIGN CO., LTD
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THE FEAST OF THE KILLER WHALES All along the Arctic coast of Norway, there’s a bloody battle going on between three different species: orcas, whales and humans! And it’s all over the vast schools of herring that migrate to the Frozen North to seek shelter there in the fjords! Didier Noirot, one of the world’s greatest underwater cameramen, tracks down and dives into the heart of Orcas hunting Herrings, using 8K underwater cameras and drones. But now, the other whales are no longer scared of joining in to claim their share of the booty. Then there are the humans, with their huge nets: they too are after the same prize. COMPANY: ARTE DISTRIBUTION
恐怖新聞 | TERROR NEWSPAPER Read it... and you die! Shizuru Onoda is a college student living in Kyoto. On the very first night of finally living on her own, someone’s pounding on her door. Terrified, she doesn’t open the door, but through the mail slot falls the Terror Newspaper. “Three days from now, a woman will leap to her death in Kyoto.” Three days later, as she drives by a building to her part-time job, she hears a loud sound behind her. A woman lays on the ground, blood pouring from her head… a suicide jumper. COMPANY: TOKAI TELEVISION BROADCASTING CO LTD
DAUGHTER OF LUPIN 2 After overcoming all sorts of obstacles, Hana and Kazuma now have the newlywed life they dreamed of. However, since Hana is a part of the “L Family” – who are all considered dead – the two are only married informally. But their long-awaited life together as couple is short lived. Wataru, Hana’s older brother, has discovered a new, big target for their heist, and the “L Family” is resurrected. Hana wants out and just live a peaceful life with her beloved Kazuma, but what will her fate be? COMPANY: FUJI TELEVISION / FUJI CREATIVE CORPORATION (FCC)
COFFEE HOUR CONTENT SHOWCASE Your daily content treat!
Takeaway a latte & settle in for a 30-min spot shot:
NTV CONTENT SHOWCASE Dec 3 @ 4.30pm
mip junior April 2021 October 2021
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05 Dec 18 DAY 1