An overview of international successes for French content

“TV France International and UniFrance Merge”

Videoage, 23/06/2021, www.videoageinternational.net

TV France International, the association for the international promotion of French audiovisual programming, has announced a merger with UniFrance, the organization for promoting French film. At a general meeting on June 23, 2021, TVFI members voted to dissolve the association and unite with UniFrance. The new UniFrance will have two divisions, one devoted to exporters and another for cinema and audiovisual producers. In addition, there will be artist and short-film divisions.” READ MORE…

“UniFrance, TVFI Merge Activities; Serge Toubiana, Hervé Michel to Lead New Org (EXCLUSIVE)”

Elsa Keslassy, Variety, 02/07/2021, variety.com

“Reflecting the blurring of boundaries between movies and TV, UniFrance and TV France International have merged their promotion organizations to form a new streamlined association. The orgs’ respective presidents, Serge Toubiana from UniFrance, and Hervé Michel from TVFI, were elected presidents of this new org, known just as UniFrance, on July 2 for a two-year term following a vote from the association’s 58 members.” READ MORE…

“TVFI Reveals Nominees For 2021 Export Awards”

Videoage, 03/06/2021, www.videoageinternational.net

“TV France International announced the nine nominees for this year’s International Export Awards. For the Animation Export Award, PGS Entertainment is nominated for season three of ALVINNN!!!! and the Chipmunks, Mediatoon Distribution for Bobby and Bill, and Cyber Group Studios for Gigantosaurus. Nominees for the Documentary Export Award include ARTE Distribution for 700 Sharks, Lucky You for Higher and Higher, and ZED for The Secret Versailles of Marie Antoinette. Lastly, the Fiction Export Award nominees include Newen Connect for Candice Renoir, Gaumont for The Art of Crime, and Mediawan for Missions. The Export Awards will take place during Le Rendez-Vous Bi@rritz, which will be held from September 6-8, 2021.” READ MORE…

“UniFrance Launches Intl French Cinema Fest”

Videoage, 02/07/2021, www.videoageinternational.net

“On July 14, France’s national Bastille Day, and during the Cannes Film Festival, UniFrance will launch its International French Cinema Fest, an event spread over 24 hours aimed at celebrating French cinema and shining a light on the latest productions whose release dates have been disrupted by the pandemic.” READ MORE…

Drama / Fiction

“Coming Next from France will Focus of French Formats Adaptation”

SeñalNews, 02/07/2021, senalnews.com

Remakes / French TV Series

The sixth edition of COMING NEXT from FRANCE, organized by TV France International (UniFrance) and Séries Mania, will take place as part of the Séries Mania Forum, in Lille and online, from August 30 to September 1. With a special focus this year on series formats, the event will offer distributors and producers the opportunity to bring to market international adaptation rights for recognized series as well as ambitious and innovative concepts. The five formats presented during the COMING NEXT from FRANCE Formats Special will be #Boomer by Balanga; The Bureau by Federation Entertainment; Diana Boss by France tv distribution; 6.30pm by Lukarn and The Rope by Wild Bunch TV.READ MORE…

6.30 PM (2020, 22×5’) / Lukarn

“Why the French TV drama boom is ‘just the beginning’”

Melanie Goodfellow, ScreenDaily, 29/06/2021, www.screendaily.com

French TV Series

“Long considered the poor relation of cinema in France, the country’s TV drama scene is sizzling as boundaries break down amid a content boom. (…) Launched in North America on June 10, Moloch joins a growing wave of French TV drama pursuing an international career, following in the wake of recent global hits such as talent agency comedy Call My Agent! and gentleman burglar caper Lupin, starring Omar Sy. “This is just the beginning,” says Lionel Uzan, co-founder and group CEO at Federation Entertainment. The Paris-based pan-European production and sales house was behind early international French TV export The Bureau as well as Netflix’s first foray into a French-language series Marseille, and sells En Thérapie. (…) Uzan cites Canal+ as “a precursor” and continuing major player in the rising drama scene. (…) A gamechanger for France Televisions has been the creation of The Alliance, the pan-Euro­pean co-production partnership with Germany’s ZDF and Italy’s Rai, which has enabled it to spearhead ambitious shows such as Germinal. TF1 has upped its game with big-budget productions including historical drama The Bonfire of Destiny and quirky eight-episode police procedural HPI. Starring Audrey Fleurot (Spiral) as a cleaning woman turned detective, HPI drew more than 10 million viewers per episode when it aired this spring and is on the radar of international buyers.” READ MORE…

Moloch (2019, 6×52’) / Mediawan Rights
High Intellectual Potential (2020, 8×52’) / Newen Connect

“How American streaming giants learnt to love Euro programming”

Alex Barker, Financial Times, 11/06/2021, www.ft.com

European TV content

“Netflix, Disney and Amazon are splurging on local-language TV and film, but will it lead to hours of bland content? (…) Last year, more than 60 per cent of Netflix’s exclusive television and films were made outside the English-speaking world, according to Ampere Analysis, a market research group. Since 2019, more than a third of all Netflix and Amazon commissions have been in languages other than English. And Disney Plus, which only launched in 2019, plans to commission 50 local productions in Europe by 2024, from a matriarchal Italian mafia tale to a French sci-fi drama.” READ MORE…

“France tv distribution on Taking French Drama Global”

Chelsea Regan, TVDrama, 29/06/2021, worldscreen.com

Industry / Market

Julia Schulte, senior VP of international sales at France tv distribution, talks to TV Drama about how the evolution of the current global media market is ripe with opportunity for French fiction. (…) “There are more and more regional and local on-demand platforms popping up everywhere,” Schulte tells TV Drama Weekly. “The diversity of the models brings more complexity and more access to series; AVOD and OTT players are multiplying everywhere. And with the diversity of those platforms and channels comes an interest for European and French drama series for different types of audiences. The broadcasters and platforms are approaching audiences in a different way (…) “French fiction exports well, and in increasing volumes, because of the launch of new digital platforms in various parts of the world. These media platforms represent new opportunities to highlight our original French productions, and each of them has different strengths in its content. It is very strategic for us to work with all of them.” Among the titles that have found global success for the company is Call My Agent!, which Schulte calls “proof that an original French production can conquer the world, both in its ready-made version and in terms of a concept that can be localized.” There’s also the daily series Chronicles of the Sun, which has been adapted in Greece, and crime fiction shows such as Captain Marleau, Criminal Games and Bright Minds.” READ MORE…

Chronicles of the Sun (2018, 260×22’) / France tv distribution
Bright Minds (2020, 1×90’ and 8×52’) / France tv distribution

“Around the World in 80 Days Set for Canneseries”

Kristin Brzoznowski, TVDrama, 29/06/2021, worldscreen.com

Sales

“The fourth edition of Canneseries, which returns to Cannes from October 8 to 13, will feature the world premiere of Around the World in 80 Days, starring David Tennant (Des, Good Omens). The new adaptation is co-produced by Slim Film + Television and Federation Entertainment for France Télévisions, ZDF, Rai (the European Alliance) as well as the BBC, Masterpiece PBS and Seven West Media in Australia, among others. The series has been acquired by the BBC in the U.K. and RTS in Switzerland. Federation will handle distribution rights to the series.” READ MORE…

“Apple TV+ orders first Anglo-French drama from ‘Spiral’ scribe”

Richard Middleton, Television Business International, 29/06/2021, tbivision.com

In Development

Apple TV+ has expanded its European originals with its first Anglo-French drama, which has been written by Spiral’s Virginie Brac. Liaison is being co-produced by Newen-owned Ringside Studios and Leonis Productions, with Stephen Hopkins (24) attached to direct. Brac is writing, while the cast includes Black Swan’s Vincent Cassel, Eva Green (Proxima) and Ozark’s Peter Mullan.” READ MORE…

“Studiocanal sells multiple hours of premium European drama across Asia”

Prensario Internacional, 24/06/2021, www.prensario.net

Sales

STUDIOCANAL has sold a slew of its premium dramas to top broadcasters and platforms throughout Asia, ahead of the forthcoming MIPCHINA event which celebrates its 2021 edition next 28 June. Canal+ Creation Originale series ZeroZeroZero, Possessions and War of the Worlds, lead the way into a number of fruitful partnerships across the region. In Japan, Tohokushinsha Film Corporation has acquired Possessions and ZeroZeroZero alongside Years & Years. (…) Mola Indonesia has also acquired more than 100 hours of programming for its SVOD service, including a number of original productions from the Canal+ channels in France and Poland,…”READ MORE…

Possessions (2019, 6×52’) / StudioCanal
ZeroZeroZero (2018, 8×52’) / StudioCanal

“Warner TV unveils first French original with fantasy comedy”

Richard Middleton, Television Business International, 23/06/2021, tbivision.com

In Development

Warner TV in France has partnered with Mediawan Group’s Making Prod for its first original French series. Visitors has been created written and directed by Simon Astier and produced by Stéphane Drouet of MakingProd. Filming in studio and outdoor is due to last until end of July.” READ MORE…

“Pathé Steps into Upscale Drama with Napoleon, Black Musketeer Series (EXCLUSIVE)”

Elsa Keslassy, Variety, 18/06/2021, variety.com

In Development

Pathé, France’s leading film studio and owner of the country’s largest theatrical circuit, is set to leap into television with a dedicated division and an ambitious drama slate from well-known filmmakers. (…) Among the series developed by the company is a show about Napoléon that Jean-François Richet (Mesrine) is creating, along with a series about a Black musketeer created by Matthieu Delaporte and Alexandre de la Patelliere, who are also behind Pathé’ $73 million two-part adaptation of Alexandre Dumas’ classic novel The Three Musketeers.” READ MORE…

TF1 Studio Scores Big Deals on Philippe Lacheau’s Comedy Superwho (EXCLUSIVE)

Elsa Keslassy, Variety, 18/06/2021, variety.com

Pre-Sales

TF1 Studio has unveiled a raft of major pre-sales on Superwho, an action-packed comedy directed by Philippe Lacheau, in the run up to the Pre-Cannes Screenings, where the film will have its virtual world premiere on June 23. (…) TFI Studio has closed about 100 territories since introducing the project to buyers at the EFM,… ” READ MORE…

Between Two Worlds from France tv distribution to Open the Directors’ Fortnight”

SeñalNews, 10/06/2021, senalnews.com

Sales

France tv distribution announces the selection of Between Two Worlds (original title: Ouistreham) by Emmanuel Carrère at the Directors’ Fortnight, a section held in parallel to the Cannes Film Festival. The film has already been sold to several territories by France tv distribution and will be released in theaters during the first half of 2022.” READ MORE…

“StudioCanal & Seven Stories reunite Tinker Tailor team for sci-fi thriller Europa

Mark Layton, Television Business International, 09/06/2021, tbivision.com

Coproduction

French production and distribution company StudioCanal is reuniting with Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy writer Peter Straughan and director Tomas Alfredson to produce Europa, an adaptation of British author Dave Hutchinson’s Fractured Europe Sequence sci-fi espionage thriller novels. Seven Stories will co-produce the 8 x 60-minute series, which will also be executive produced by Anand Tucker, Colleen Woodcock and Robyn Slovo.” READ MORE…

Prostitution Thriller Red Light Notches Up Sales

Kristin Brzoznowski, TVDrama, 08/06/2021, worldscreen.com

Sales

“Federation Entertainment has signed several key sales for the series Red Light, including in France and Germany. (…) The series is co-produced by Eyeworks (The Twelve, Floodland) and Hollands Licht for VTM (Belgium) and NPO/BNNVARA (Netherlands). In addition to ARTE France, which is set to debut the drama in 2022, the series has been sold to AMC Iberia, NRK in Norway, Walter Presents in the U.K., Pasaka in Lithuania and Turkcell in Turkey. In the rest of the world, sales have been secured with HOT in Israel, Rialto in New Zealand and SBS in Australia and a streaming service in Latin America.” READ MORE…

Federation raises $60m to fuel int’l expansion & acquisitions

Richard Middleton, Television Business International, 04/06/2021, tbivision.com

Industry / Market

In Treatment producer Federation Entertainment has secured a €50m ($60m) investment to fuel its international expansion, with potential prodco acquisitions in its sights.READ MORE…

In Treatment (2021, 25×26’) / Federation Entertainment

Wild Bunch International and Capricci create new label Wild West

Fabien Lemercier, cineuropa, 02/06/2021, www.cineuropa.org

Industry / Market

“The two groups are coming together to develop 12 genre projects per year, both feature films and series, building on the So Film de Genre residency program” READ MORE…

Pluto TV France strikes deal with Mediawan, adds 10 channels

Stuart Thomson, Digital TV Europe, 01/06/2021, www.digitaltveurope.com

Sales

ViacomCBS-owned AVOD service Pluto TV is to add 10 new channels to its French offering, with 1,000 hours of programming and 150 movies from media company Mediawan’s catalogue. The new channels will add to Pluto TV’s existing French offering of over 45 channels. The service has set an objective of offering 100 channels by the end of this year. New channels dedicated to popular French series from the ‘90s such as Hélène et les garçons, Le Miel et les abeilles and Les Filles d’à côté were launched on Sunday.” READ MORE…

Honey and the Bees (Le miel et les abeilles) (1993, 200×26’) / Mediawan Rights

Kids

“Tooned into Europe”

Mansha Daswani, TVKids, 18/06/2021, worldscreen.com

Industry / Market

“The European animation sector is buzzing with activity amid new content quotas on global SVODs and broadcasters’ continued commitment to telling locally resonant stories. (…) Of course, it’s not just streamers investing in high-quality French animation. A healthy broadcast commissioning landscape has created a treasure trove of local commissions and co-pros that are selling well worldwide. Indeed, the most recent figures from the CNC saw French animation exports up 12.1 percent to €77.4 million ($94 million) in 2019. “It is a highly competitive market, but French studios create strong original content with good storytelling and amazing animation,” observes Michelle Palant, international sales manager at France tv distribution. “With the help of kid-focused channels such as France 4 and Gulli (and all the other commissioners), many shows are being produced and the market remains dynamic.”” READ MORE…  

Cyber Group Studios to Adapt ‘Final Fantasy IX’ into Animated Series

Videoage, 22/06/2021, www.videoageinternational.net

In Development

Cyber Group Studios has signed an exclusive option agreement with Square Enix to adapt the video game Final Fantasy IX into an animated series. Produced by Cyber Group Studios’ two production studios in Paris and Roubaix, the animated adventure series will be aimed at kids and family as well as gamers. The adaptation will showcase the world of the game through supervision by Square Enix. Cyber Group Studios will oversee worldwide distribution and merchandise licensing.” READ MORE…  

“Superights lands animation distribution deal with Tencent Video”

Rapid TV News, 18/06/2021, www.rapidtvnews.com

Sales

“French distribution company Superights has secured an ex-China global distribution agreement with Chinese media giant Tencent Video for its animated comedy series The Adventures of Little Penguin. (…) Selina She, director of kids’ IP development and programing center at Tencent Video added: “We are thrilled to share this new partnership with Superights. Their knowledge of the international market and expertise of the kids and family space will be key to shedding light on The Adventures of Little Penguin. We look forward to this new collaboration and can’t wait to see our little Oscar on screens all around the world.”” READ MORE…

The Adventures of Little Penguin (2021, 52×5’) / Superights

“France tv distribution gets global sales of its animated slate”

SeñalNews, 16/06/2021, senalnews.com

Sales

“As the MIFA approaches, France tv distribution announces new international deals for its animated hit series “A Day A Fact” produced by Milan Presse, “Super Caribou” produced by Autour de Minuit and “Boris” (season 3) produced by Les Films de l’Arlequin will be aired in several territories.” READ MORE…

Super Caribou (2020, 48×11’ and 2×22’ or 1×44’) / France tv distribution

“Zephyr, Super RTL team up on ‘Lana Longbeard’ Production Quest”

Mercedes Milligan, Animation Magazine, 15/06/2021, www.animationmagazine.net

Co-development

APC Kids, the children’s entertainment division of leading co-production and distribution company APC Studios, has secured a key co-development deal with Super RTL (Germany) through its production arm Zephyr Animation.” READ MORE…

“Dandelooo and Vivi Film to co-produce animated series ‘The Upside Down River’”

AnimationXpress, 14/06/2021, www.animationxpress.com

Coproduction

Dandelooo and Vivi Film have announced a partnership to co-produce and co-finance the new animated series The Upside Down River. Dandelooo’s animation studio Ooolala in La Cartoucherie, Valence (France) will produce the new 2D animation in co-operation with Canal+ Family. Directed by Paul Leluc (The Wolf, The Long Long Holiday), the series targeted at eight- to 12-year-olds and will commence production at the end of this year.” READ MORE… 

The Upside Down River (2022, 9×26’) / Dandelooo

“APC Kids’ Zephyr Animation Signs Co-Developement Deal with France Televisions on Mogu & Perol”

Licensing Magazine, 14/06/2021, www.licensingmagazine.com

Co-development

The French prodco expands its slate of kids content through collaboration with Japanese stop-motion studio ‘dwarf’ APC Kids, the children’s entertainment division of leading co-production and distribution company APC, is bolstering its production slate through its studio Zephyr Animation with new stop motion animated series Mogu & Perol, co-produced with renowned Japanese animation studio ‘dwarf’. Zephyr has signed a deal with France Télévisions to co-develop Mogu & Perol, a comedy series targeted at children aged 3-6.” READ MORE… 

“Superights Secures Three New Distribution Deals”

Chelsea Regan, TVKids, 10/06/2021, worldscreen.com

In Distribution

Superights has signed brand-new distribution deals for Croco Doc, Hidden Waste and Giuseppe. Nathalie Pinguet, deputy general manager of Superights, shares: “These new acquisitions are the result of multiple meetings with passionate producers. Every day, we strive to find the best programs from the four corners of the globe to satisfy our customers’ diverse expectations. We are delighted to enrich our catalog even more with these new series presenting fresh worlds that will engage various audiences”.” READ MORE… 

“Federation Kids & Family to distribute Kung Fu Wa!”

Ryan Tuchow, kidscreen, 10/06/2021, kidscreen.com

In Distribution

Tencent and UYoung‘s action-comedy, set to debut in China later this year, is gearing up to travel the world with its new global distributor. Paris-based Federation Kids & Family has picked up worldwide distribution rights (excluding China and Latin America) to a new animated adventure series from China’s Tencent Video and UYoung called Kung Fu Wa!READ MORE… 

“Superights adds new sales for Geronimo Stilton”

Francesca Ash, Total Licensing, 07/06/2021, www.totallicensing.com

Sales

Superights has announced a bunch of new sales for its investigation and adventure series Geronimo Stilton, produced by Atlantyca and Superprod. The series includes 3 seasons of 26 episodes for a total of 78 episodes. (…) …the series is continuing its world tour with new deals signed around the globe: Edye, HITN’s digital platform in Neutral Spanish purchased SVOD rights for US Hispanic and LATAM territories, Knowledge Network in Canada bought Free TV, for season 1 in addition to S2 and S3 previously acquired, as well as SVOD rights and RTI, the Ivorian channel acquired Free TV rights.” READ MORE…

“Federation Kids & Family signs on for TVOkids’ Let’s Dance

Videoage, 03/06/2021, www.videoageinternational.net

In Distribution

Federation Kids & Family, part of Federation Entertainment, teamed up with TVO in Canada and producer Sarah Haasz on the launch of Let’s Dance. The TVOkids Original is an upbeat dance coaching series for children. Co-produced by TVOkids and Sarah Haasz’s Pillango Productions, the series features ordinary kids with big personalities who love to dance. Federation Kids & Family will oversee worldwide distribution.” READ MORE…

Docs / Factual / Formats

“Round up: Prime scores twice deals for Olympic doc”

Mark Layton, Television Business International, 28/06/2021, tbivision.com

Sales

“Brazil’s Globosat and RTVE Spain have acquired the documentary Berlin 1936’s Olympic Games, following deals with international distributor Prime Entertainment Group.” READ MORE…

Berlin 1936’s Olympic Games (2015, 52’) / Prime Entertainment Group

“Nadia Nadim Doc for Canal+”

Chelsea Regan, TVReal, 23/06/2021, worldscreen.com

In Development

Federation Entertainment and Echo Studio have joined forces for NADIA, a new documentary by Anissa Bonnefont that tells the story of Nadia Nadim, a former Afghan refugee who became a star on the Paris Saint-Germain football club. A Canal+ original, NADIA was selected at Sunny Side as part of the Women in Doc Talent Hub 2021. Filming on the documentary began in June 2020 in France and Denmark and finished with the PSG women’s team’s victory in the French championship on June 4.” READ MORE…

NADIA (2021, 1×100’) / Federation Entertainment

“Extra: France TV plans doc on lost Malaysia Airlines flight”

Justin Anderson, Realscreen, 21/06/2021, realscreen.com

In Development

Federation announces “MH370″ series at Sunny Side of the Doc French indie Federation Entertainment has announced MH370, a documentary series exploring the tragic 2014 disappearance of a Malaysia Airlines flight. Produced with So In Love, the media production unit of So Press, MH370 is a 5 x 45-minute docuseries examining the mysterious disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight 370, which still has no official explanation seven years later. MH370 was co-developed with France Télévisions, and was announced by Catherine Alvaresse, France Télévisions’ head of documentaries, at Sunny Side of the Doc. Federation Entertainment will handle worldwide sales.” READ MORE…

“Banijay falls for Love IRL format”

C21Media, 18/06/2021, www.c21media.net

Sales

“European production giant Banijay has picked up rights to French reality dating format Love IRL in the UK, Italy, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands and Dutch-speaking Belgium. Originally produced under the title Et si on se rencontrait? by prodco Studio 89 for French channel M6, …” READ MORE…

TV5 Monde Picks Up New Content from Prime Entertainment

SeñalNews, 17/06/2021, senalnews.com

Sales

“International Distributor Prime Entertainment Group has sealed a new deal with the public service TV5 Monde for a concert of the outstanding band Vaudou Game and the compelling documentary Bessie Coleman, the First Black Aviatrix.” READ MORE…

“Prime Entertainment Group Signs Deal For Stories With SVT”

Videoage, 11/06/2021, www.videoageinternational.net

Sales

Prime Entertainment Group closed a new deal with Sweden’s SVT for Stories. SVT acquired a package of episodes of Stories, which highlights some of Hollywood’s biggest talents. The cinema and entertainment series has also been picked up by AMC International, Cinemundo, and WDR, among others.” READ MORE…

“ARTE Distribution Goes Big on Escapism”

Kristin Brzoznowski, TVReal, 09/06/2021, worldscreen.com

Industry / Market

“Florence Sala, head of ARTE Distribution, talks about how factual content with the theme of ‘discovery’ has been in high demand as of late.” READ MORE…

“Factual round-up: ZED reveals NA pre-sales”

Mark Layton, Television Business International, 10/06/2021, tbivision.com

Pre-Sales

“French factual prodco and distributor ZED has announced pre-sales for five of its current projects in the North American market.” READ MORE…

Never Alone (Kalahari, Land of Secret Alliances) (2021, 2×52’ and 1×90’ and 1×52’) / ZED

Quintus Studios adds factual content for VOD channels

Faye Sutton, Rapid TV News, 02/06/2021, www.rapidtvnews.com

Sales

Quintus Studios has acquired several factual titles from a number of European distributors including those from FD Real, Free Documentary, Free Documentary History, Free Documentary Nature and ENDEVR. (…) … and finally, from French producer and distributor Prime Entertainment Group the crime investigative series Women on Death Row and Oakland’s Juvenile Squad for Free Documentary.” READ MORE…

“Banijay & Rabbit Films take Oble format La Lettre across Europe”

Richard Middleton, Television Business International, 28/05/2021, tbivision.com

Sales / Remake

Banijay and Rabbit Films in Finland have acquired remake rights to La Lettre (aka Yours Sincerely), the French format that sees celebrities surprising “ordinary heroes”. The global production outfit has taken rights in Italy and Belgium, while Rabbit Films has picked up the show for a Finnish remake. Broadcaster details have not yet been revealed.” READ MORE…

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