Market draws TV-logged exex to Germany

The lure of Cologne

COLOGNE — Why another TV market so soon after the L.A. Screenings, not to mention Mip and the National Assn. of Television Program Executives before that?

For former RTL boss Helmut Thoma, organizer of the first Cologne Screenings, the reason is simple: The second-biggest TV market in the world demands a bazaar where German broadcasters can shop for international fare, and where the ever-increasing number of Teutonic producers can peddle products.

Tomas Arteaga, vice president of international sales at Saban Entertainment Germany, couldn’t agree more: “It makes perfect sense to have a TV market in the No. 1 city for TV production in Germany, if not Europe.”

Finding its place

The problem, however, is there are already so many markets, and without others dissolving, it’s going to be difficult for the Cologne Screenings to evolve.

Similarly, Nadja Anan, head of international series and animation at German broadcaster ProSieben, said the market is just too close to the L.A. Screenings, from where many buyers like herself have just returned.

Anan was present at the 10th annual Cologne Conference, which is also taking place as part of the Medienforum, but skipped the screenings.

However, Anan did praise the conference, where ProSieben premiered its much awaited U.S. imports “Futurama” and “Malcolm in the Middle,” both of which picked up awards at the event and enjoyed overflowing attendance.

Site makes waves

A number of visitors to the screenings were not too enthusiastic about the venue, a riverboat docked outside the city’s convention center.

While the upper decks provide a nice place to have cocktail and a pleasant view of the city, sellers were confined to tiny, unventilated cabins made even more uncomfortable by the warm, muggy weather.

“The boat was not the best place to have the market, hopefully that will change next year. The cabins were extremely small so we just took buyers upstairs to talk,” said Arteaga.

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