Disney, Discovery team for ‘Race’

Latin American version of reality hit planned

CANNES — Disney Media Networks Latin America and Discovery Networks Latin America/U.S. Hispanic are to produce a local version of long running reality show “The Amazing Race” for the entire region.

For both companies, deal marks the first pan-regional production of an original reality competition format.

Agreement was unveiled Wednesday at Mipcom.

Pre-production for the local version of “Amazing Race” will begin in January and will include contestants from the region. Discovery Channel plans to air the reality show in Latin America and the Caribbean in late 2009.

Created by Elise Doganieri and Bertram Van Munster, and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, the U.S. version of “Amazing Race,” is now in its 14th season on CBS.

In a parallel announcement, Disney said that DMNLA will now distribute all Disney and non-Disney branded content to all TV platforms in the U.S. Hispanic market.

Move follows the strategy that began last year with the original production of “Amas de casa desesperadas” (“Desperate Housewives”) for Univision.

The distribution includes series from ABC Studios; feature films from Walt Disney Pictures, Touchstone Pictures, Hollywood Pictures, Miramax Films and Disney-Pixar; and titles from Latin American labels Patagonik and Miravista.

Also at Mipcom, Disney-ABC-ESPN TV struck a deal with South African pubcaster SABC for over 200 episodes of ABC’s talk show “The View,” as well as the third season of “Desperate Housewives” and multiple seasons of “The Amazing Race.”