Variety

Founded in 1905, Variety is an entertainment newspaper published weekly by Reed Business Information. The subtitle of the paper is The International Entertainment Weekly. Variety features stories and columns pertaining to theatre, television, radio, music, records and movies. Variety's Vice President and Editor-in-Chief is Peter Bart. Charles Koones serves as President and Publisher. Dana Harris is the Editor and Olivia Hemaratanatorn is the Managing Editor.

Articles from October 2017

A Crime Wave Takes over the Croisette
Scripted dramatic television has had a long-running fascination with tales of crime, with dozens of new shows in the genre being produced each year. While jurisdictions and some specific procedural elements may be regional, the mystery of those who commit...
American Drama Sails across Pond
Selling one-hour dramas to buyers in foreign markets at Mipcom isn't always that different from pitching shows to some domestic outlets: Terrestrial broadcasters gravitate toward procedurals, and SVOD outlets are often more interested in edgier, serialized...
A Recipe for TV Longevity
When Gordon Ramsay first came to Mipcom, it was via Reg Grundy's yacht, on which he was the Australian TV impressario's private chef. Fast forward through the years, and his no-nonsense, expletive-laden shows like "Hell's Kitchen," "Kitchen Nightmares,"...
Charting a Global Course
HBO has deep roots well beyond the U.S. The premium cabler has long licensed its original programming in overseas markets. But the company's recent focus has been to launch standalone linear and digital channels in markets that are hungry for high-end...
Content Makeover Pushes New Limits
Galvanized by Netflix, whose Ted Sarandos has confirmed 50 original Latin American productions and branded licensed productions in development through 2018, the dramatic makeover in high-end Latin American TV production is moving up a gear.One of the...
Content Makers Embrace Platform
Though linear TV still reps 80% of local consumption, Turkish originals made for OTT and SVOD play are widely considered key to unlocking new markets and taking the Turkish tube phenomenon to the next level.Just as importantly, these shows employ more...
Dancing into Global Hearts?
Attempting to generate a global hit through the medium of dance, NBC series "World of Dance" comes out of Universal Television Alternative Studio, which falls under Paul Telegdy and is run by Meredith Ahr. The hope for the show, which has tentpole status...
Director Chowdhury Sets ‘Rickshaw Girl’ Shoot
BANGLADESHI FILMMAKER Amitabh Reza Chowdhury ("Aynabaji") will go into production on Bengali-language film "Rickshaw Girl" in March.Chowdhury is part of the Bangladeshi contingent attending the Busan Platform program.The film is based on Mitali Perkins'...
Festival Will Be without Leader for Four Months
WHILE ASIA'S BIGGEST annual movie pageant, the Busan Film Festival, is now functioning with an air of normality, delivering world premieres and drawing crowds, it has not extricated itself from the problems of the past three years.Indeed, after the festival...
Flx Expands on ‘the Sunny Side’
Ever since Felix Herngren and Pontus Edgren created "The Sunny Side" (Solsidan) TV series for Sweden's TV4, they have been building on its triumph. Success has followed success for the founders of Stockholm-based FLX. Herngren, now creative director,...
Fox Goes ‘Deep’ in Europe and Africa
Fox is known for producing big-budget drama series in the U.S. that travel the world. For the first time, Fox Networks Group Europe & Africa is deploying its own team of secret agents.The group's first original drama production, espionage thriller...
Fresh Formats, New Rules
The revolution sweeping Latin American TV is captured graphically in the shooting style of HBO Latin America's "El Jardín de Bronce" and Globo's "Under Pressure" and "The Brothers."One episode of "El Jardín de Bronce" begins with the camera creeping...
Global Gains for Turkey’s Shows
The Turkish TV wave is still going strong.Turkish soaps and dramas continue to connect with hundreds of millions of viewers around the world, scoring top ratings across Latin America, after conquering the Middle East. They are now making new inroads...
Hbo’s Greatest Hits
Original programming makes the world go round for HBO. The cable powerhouse is investing big in scripted programming in major territories. But it's still the exports from the U.S. that drive the business. Here's a look at the distinctive programs that...
Helmer Farooki on ‘Saturday Afternoon’
EMINENT BANGLADESHI filmmaker Mostofa Sarwar Farooki will commence production on Bengali- and English- language film "Saturday Afternoon" in December.Farooki describes the film as "a thriller where the lives of several people collide on one fateful day."Farooki...
Helmer Hirose to Debut ‘Dawn’
FIRST-TIME DIRECTOR Hirose Nanako and producer Nishikawa Asako, both protégés of Japanese auteur Kore-eda Hirokazu, are at the Busan Asian Project Market with the drama "Dawn" (working title).Hirose was a crew member on Kore-eda's "Like Father, Like...
IMG Flexes Indie Muscle
Two years ago, WME/IMG partner Chris Rice came to Mipcom with one show and a mission to establish IMG as a player in international sales of scripted TV series. Based on the portfolio he's bringing to the show this year, Rice achieved his goal."The Night...
Italo Pubcaster Raises the Bar
After churning out pedestrian shows for decades, Italian state broadcaster Rai is making a major push into the global TV arena thanks to a more ambitious mindset that has spawned high-end hit "Medici: Masters of Florence," and will soon see series "My...
Italo TV Adapts to Global Tastes
Italian TV is breaking away from a long stretch of shows about prim priests, good cops and bad cardboard cutout mobsters, as shifts in the media landscape prompt local content providers to raise the bar. This, in turn, is generating shows that are putting...
It’s ‘Saturday Night’ Alive and Well Abroad
The surge of interest in "Saturday Night Live" during the past year has spread beyond U.S. borders.NBCUniversal Intl. Studios is in the midst of a format-sales push to set up local editions of the venerable sketch comedy around the world. "Saturday Night...
Kamila Andini: ‘I Managed to Release Two Short Films during Pregnancy and Breastfeeding’
WHEN DIRECTOR KAMILA ANDINI showcased her debut feature, "The Mirror Never Lies," in Busan in 2011, she already mentioned that her second feature would be a story about children and nature. That story, "The Seen and Unseen, which screens in Busan's A...
Korean Audiences Respond to Political Docs
WHILE THE BUSAN festival is still feeling the political repercussions of its decision to screen "The Truth Shall Not Sink With the Sewol," the controversial documentary about the capsizing of Sewol ferry in 2014 that was critical of the government, the...
Korean K-Pop Agency YG Expands to Southeast Asia
YG, THE POWERHOUSE K-pop agency that represents Psy, is opening up for business in Southeast Asia.One of Korea's top music, talent and management groups, YG is making a strategic investment of undisclosed size in Singapore-based Gushcloud, through its...
Kore-Eda Boards ‘Ten Years’
ICONIC JAPANESE AUTEUR Hirokazu Kore-eda has come on board as executive producer of "Ten Years Japan," a spinoffof 2015's Hong Kong indie hit "Ten Years."The original "Ten Years" movie was a low-budget omnibus film in which five young directors envisaged...
Kross Pictures Sees Future in Remakes
FOR YEARS, South Korea's high-concept feature movies, including prominent titles such as "Oldboy," have been ripped off, plagiarized and blatantly copied by some companies in India.Now, Korean producer and packaging company Kross Pictures is busily turning...
‘La Zona’ Jumps Genres for Thrills
Movistar Plus' most ambitious push into high-end genre is the postnuclear-disaster thriller "La Zona." One advantage that TV has as a medium is its ability to cross between genres from episode to episode, and "La Zona" will take advantage of that. A...
Local Character Fuels Drama Series
Few major TV players have launched into high-end drama production so quickly, or on such a scale, as Telefonica's Spanish pay-TV unit Movistar Plus. Its first series, "Velvet Collection," bowed on Movistar Plus on Sept. 22 to the largest average viewership...
Local Content’s King for Netflix in Region
A study by U.S.-based Parrot Analytics, published two years ago, just as Netflix was launching in Japan, suggested that Japanese audiences had far less interest in Western series such as "Orange Is the New Black," or "House of Cards" than folks in North...
Local Dramas Ready to Draw Global Auds
Turkish productions are banking on melodrama conventions to great effectTurkish TV dramas continue to click around the world thanks to their wellhoned storylines with primal themes, a slower pace, and a more humanist feel than most Hollywood shows."It's...
Market Highlights
'AMARGURA STREET'(ICAIC/Ficción Producciones)Winner of a development award from Spanish pubcaster RTVE at June's Conecta Fiction, this series is set in a tumultuous colonial 1850 Cuba as two women - a slave and a young bourgeois - battle social iniquity.'CATHEDRAL...
Mayhem
MIDNIGHT PASSIONMayhemDirector: Joe LynchStarring: Steven Yeun, Samara Weaving, Dallas Mark Roberts, Caroline Chikezie, Mark Stewart Frost, Kerry Fox, Lucy Chappell, Steven BrandIf you can imagine a multimovie- mashup of boardroom suspenser, "Die Hard"...
Media Flocks to the Hub of Asia
A clear legal framework, political stability and a free market economy are what makes Singapore continue to be a conducive environment for international television networks to house their Asian headquarters.Industry insiders say that while the English-speaking...
Nat Geo Explores Various Worlds
Courteney Monroe is the executive in charge of ensuring that National Geographic's iconic yellow box retains its luster on television.As CEO of National Geographic Global Networks, Monroe oversees programming for dozens of channels reaching 172 countries....
New Latin Loves
BAD MAIDS(TV Azteca, Mexico)Part of TV Azteca's big push at Mipcom, where CEO Benjamin Salinas delivers a keynote. The contemporary, socially relevant fare here is a forced surrogacy melodrama.BELAVENTURA(TV Record, Brazil)A "Game of Thrones"-inspired...
Over-the-Top Growth in Video
Video-streaming markets in the AsiaPacific region are poised to grow massively over the next few years. But the big picture forecasts mask sharply different trends and conceal an inevitable process of consolidation.Digital TV Research, a British analysis...
Parisian TV Players Invade the States
For decades, French television was dominated by American series imports while Paris-set cop shows were the only kind of French drama that traveled abroad. But that was then. The launch of Gaumont's Los Angeles-based studio in 2011 marked a turning point...
Plepler Listens to Hbo People
HBO has HBO- and Cinemax-branded channels operating in more than 60 countries in Latin America, the Caribbean, Europeand Asia. Richard Plepler has visited all of HBO's international outposts since he was promoted to CEO in 2013.Plepler's travels have...
Pop Aye
A WINDOW ON ASIAN CINEMAPop AyeDirector, writer: Kirsten TanStarring: Thaneth Warakulnukroh, Bong the elephant, Penpak Sirikul, Chaiwat Khumdee, Yukontorn Sukkijja, Narong PongpabIt takes gumption, or downright foolhardiness, to shoot a debut feature...
Promise at Dawn
WORLD CINEMAPromise at DawnDirector: Eric BarbierStarring: Pierre Niney, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Catherine McCormack, Finnegan Oldfield, Pawel Puchalski, Nemo Schiffman, Zoe BoyleHowever abetted by fiction, Romain Gary's autobiographical novel "Promise...
Risky Business
For years, primetime Spanish fiction TV was monopolized by rosetinted, four-quadrant visions of family, inner-city communities and liberal professionals. Now, they have been replaced by a groundswell of Mediterranean and Atlantic noir and fantasy.Local...
Roya Sadat’s ‘Letter’ Spells out Afghan Inequality
REVIEWRoya Sadat’s ‘Letter’ Spells Out Afghan InequalityWHETHER INTENTIONALLY or otherwise, it's apt that "A Letter to the President" - the second feature by Afghan filmmaker Roya Sadat - shares a title with a 2012 essay by Erica Jong. The latter, addressed...
Safety in Numbers
As more SVOD players enter the arena, the winds of change are sweeping through high-end drama production in Spain.For local producers, no aspect of production looks set to be as fiercely contested as their retention of at least partial rights to the...
Seminal Slate Covers All Bases
FELIXTeaming audience-friendly auteur Cesc Gay ("Truman") and thesp Leonardo Sbaraglia ("Wild Tales"), the eight-segment series turns on a man's search for a young Asian girl who disappears just before their second date. "A fish-outof-water comedy thriller,"...
Sending TV Troops Overseas
Even with thousands of hours of television being presented at this year's Mipcom, one new and specific trend has emerged in scripted military dramas. From the U.S. alone come a number of patriotic dramas premiering this fall: CBS Television Studios'...
Small-Screen Boom in Nordic Nations
A traditionally fertile ground for storytellers, Scandinavia's TV drama landscape has grown tremendously in the past few years, bolstered by the boom of global and local streaming, pay-TV services such as Netflix, HBO, CMore and Viaplay across the Nordics.After...
Thomas the Tank Engine Gets a Tune-Up
Mattel is planning a big makeover for the venerable Thomas the Tank Engine property in the hopes of reinvigorating its prospects as a global film and TV franchise.Thomas is off to see the world, while his cohort of engines in the Steam Team are set for...
What’s the Big Unscripted Idea?
All the excitement in the global television business about the explosion of opportunity for scripted dramas in recent years has overshadowed the prolonged slump in the unscripted marketplace. The activity at Mipcom this time around will test whether...
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