Net to offer both versions of reality skein

A correction was made to this article on June 14, 2006

As part of a drive to reinvigorate the network and boost ratings, Canuck pubcaster CBC will air both Canadian and U.S. versions of “The One,” running Stateside on ABC this summer.

“The One,” originally a Spanish reality show, is similar to “American Idol,” but over the course of the season the contestants live together and undergo voice training before competing for the top slot at the finale.

Endemol USA prexy-CEO David Goldberg explained at a reality panel at the Banff World TV Festival Tuesday that ABC hopes to pick up a portion of “American Idol” auds by running the show when “Idol” is not on, with between one-third and one-half of “Idol” numbers considered a success.

Airing the U.S. format on the Canuck pubcaster appears at first glance to run contrary to CBC’s mandated preference for homegrown programming.

But at another panel Monday, CBC deputy director Christine Wilson pointed out that being associated with the North American brand is preferable to competing against a U.S. version simulcast on one of the private Canadian webs.

CBC recently launched a factual programming strand, headed by Julie Bristow, and is upping the quantity of reality programming on the network.

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