CANNES — Youth programming digital upstart Vice Media and FremantleMedia, the distribution-production giant behind shows like “Idols,” “Got Talent” and “The X Factor,” launched their joint-venture Munchies channel at MipTV Monday in Cannes.
FremantleMedia is repping the channel’s shows, which target the youth demo, in international markets. Keith Hindle, CEO digital and branded entertainment, FremantleMedia, said that a U.S. cable network is in talks to acquire Munchies’ content, but would not give details.
Munchies, which is named after Vice’s existing flagship food show, is a video-driven online channel that sets out to combine the fast-paced pumping-style Vice is known for with the production capability and global reach of FremantleMedia.
The shows are aimed at audiences from 18 to 34 years old, which the partners believe have been ignored by mainstream producers and broadcasters of food shows.
Hindle said: “In TV it is increasingly hard for us and anybody else to launch new content on television that attracts a younger demo. When you see a new show launching on television networks around the world, look at the young demo that they have attracted and very often it is lower than the show that it replaced in that time slot in the 18-34 demo. Vice have been very successful at attracted that young demo to the new content they have launched.”
Five shows were unveiled at MipTV: “Being Frank,” “Munchies: Chef’s Night Out,” “Fresh Off the Boat,” “Girl Eats Food” and “F*ck, That’s Delicious.”
Four of the shows are presenter led: “Being Frank” is delivered by two restaurant owners from Queens, New York, Frank Falcinelli and Frank Castronovo; “Fresh Off the Boat” is fronted by Taiwanese-American hip-hop aficionado Eddie Huang; “Girl Eats Food” is hosted by British food fantasist Joanna Fuertes-Knight; and “F*ck, That’s Delicious” is presented by chef turned rapper Action Bronson.
Eddy Moretti, Vice chief creative officer, said that mainstream producers of food programming have not served the youth demo well. “TV missed the boat on this kind of content because they didn’t turn over their development machinery to these kids,” he said. “There’s a changing of the guard.”