You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

MTV, Amazon Get Low Marks in Unscripted TV Producers Survey, Oxygen Voted Most Improved

MTV and Amazon are among the toughest TV networks for producers to work with while Oxygen ranks as the most improved since last year, according to a survey of unscripted TV producers released Wednesday by the NPACT trade organization.

The survey encompasses rankings of 46 outlets in eleven categories from producers at 48 companies. The survey found Showtime, CBS, A&E, History, and Investigation Discovery (ID) earning high marks for the business environment for producers. MTV, Amazon, VH1, and BET ranked consistently near the bottom. (A rep for MTV and VH1 noted that the channels have some of the most-watched unscripted programs on cable with MTV’s “Teen Mom” and VH1’s “Love and Hip Hop.”)

Meanwhile, Apple’s nascent original programming operation has made a positive impression on producers in a short time, according to the survey.

The survey categories included rankings according to the ease (or not) of the pitching process, promotional and scheduling support for shows, the ease of dealing with business affairs, development, production management, editorial oversight, financial reporting and payment policies.

Tops in the pitching process were Apple, A&E, ID, History and CBS. For development, the leaders were Smithsonian Network, ID, YouTube Red, Showtime, NBC, and CBS. In business affairs, responses to the query “are they fair and negotiable, or take-it-or-leave-it” came back with History, National Geographic Channel, DIY, FYI, and Nat Geo Wild at the top of the pack. Amazon, GSN, Syfy and MTV were at the bottom of the business affairs ranking.

Most improved networks since the first survey was conducted last year were Oxygen, with nine votes; Amazon and History with five votes apiece; Netflix with four, and Discovery and YouTube Red with three apiece.

A&E, ID, and Netflix led the poll in the category of “networks you most respect,” with 11 votes apiece. History earned eight votes in this category, followed by Bravo with seven.

Comparisons with last year’s inaugural survey are complicated by the fact that the field of networks has expanded to include commercial-free outlets. Last year, two separate surveys were conducted by rival trade organizations (the Nonfiction Producers Association and PactUS) that have since merged into NPACT. This year’s responses include input from companies that are not members of NPACT.

“This latest survey offers detailed, comprehensive information about producers’ perceptions of networks and OTT services amidst a climate of unprecedented change,” said NPACT general manager John Ford. “NPACT’s goal is to improve that creative process however we can, and our surveys aim to do just that.”

More TV

  • Black Panther

    'Black Panther,' 'Crazy Rich Asians,' 'Westworld' Among Costume Designers Guild Winners

    “Crazy Rich Asians,” “The Favourite” and “Black Panther” walked away with top honors at the 21st annual Costume Designers Guild Awards Tuesday night, the final industry guild show before the Oscars on Feb. 24. “The Favourite” and “Black Panther” are up for the Oscar this year, along with “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs,” “Mary Poppins [...]

  • Syfy Cancels 'Nightflyers' After One Season

    Syfy Cancels 'Nightflyers' After One Season

    The George R.R. Martin drama “Nightflyers” has been canceled by Syfy after only one season. Based on the novella from the mastermind behind “Game of Thrones,” the show was seen as a big gamble for the NBCUniversal-owned cable network, as it represented the most expensive series it had ever developed. The network attempted to spark [...]

  • Batwoman Arrow

    The CW's 'Batwoman' Pilot Switches Directors, Adds Dougray Scott

    The CW has added veteran Scottish actor Dougray Scott to its “Batwoman” pilot as well as swapped in Marcos Siega for previous director David Nutter, Variety has learned. The pilot, which stars Ruby Rose as the eponymous caped heroine, is being helmed by DC TV head Greg Berlanti, and was penned by “Vampire Diaries” alum [...]

  • OG Review

    Review: 'O.G.' on HBO

    Jeffrey Wright, the most compelling reason to watch HBO’s new film “O.G.,” is among television’s best actors at switching between codes or manners of being. On “Westworld,” his timeline-toggling android swaps personae so delicately that his performance gains in resonance when recalled in retrospect. (Perhaps that’s why Wright has been so oddly underrated through the [...]

  • Nahnatchka Khan Writers Room

    Nahnatchka Khan Exits 20th Century Fox TV for Overall Deal at Universal

    Nahnatchka Khan has signed a four-year overall deal at Universal Television. The deal brings an end to the decade-plus Khan and her Fierce Baby Productions banner spent at 20th Century Fox Television. The move will see Khan exit from her role as showrunner on ABC comedy “Fresh Off the Boat,” which she also created. The [...]

  • David Ajala

    'Nightflyers' Star David Ajala Joins CBS Drama Pilot 'Under the Bridge'

    David Ajala has been cast in a lead role in the CBS drama pilot “Under the Bridge,” Variety has learned. In the project, when a scandal rocks the medical practice she runs with her husband and their friends, a surgeon rises to the occasion and takes the lead in trying to mend both the practice and [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content