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Amazon Studios Plans Unscripted Push in Europe

Georgia Brown, Amazon Studios’ head of European Prime Original Series, said Monday that the streamer is preparing to ramp up its slate of unscripted shows in France, Spain and Italy and will be announcing format adaptations in those markets in the next few months.

Amazon’s first British unscripted original on Brown’s watch will feature “The Grand Tour” star James May, which the company announced Monday and which Brown mentioned in her address. Titled “Our Man in… Japan,” the show will be a six-part travelogue across Japan. The unscripted series, which has just started shooting, has been commissioned from Plum Pictures and will roll out on Amazon Prime Video globally.

Brown told INTV that Amazon is currently filling out its local teams in Europe, including Spain, France, Italy and Germany, and plans to have scripted and unscripted commissioning executives in each market by April 1.

On the scripted side, Brown said Amazon was primarily interested in serialized content and locally grounded shows. “We want to make local shows that can have a huge impact on those markets, but also travel,” she said.

She said Amazon was looking to have a flexible model in terms of distribution and allow producers to work with other partners in foreign markets when it makes more sense. “We don’t have [a] one-size-fits-all” model, Brown said.

She cited “Power,” a series that will boast strong female characters and illustrate Amazon Studios’s ambition to “diversify but not only [in terms of] male and female but also with voices on screen.”

Most producers overseas are still trying to figure out what Amazon Studios is looking for to feed its originals pipeline, but Brown said the primary criterion was the story, not necessarily the IP or talent, although those can “elevate a show….But some of the worst books I ever read made a great show,” she said.

Brown is one of the top-level industry players attending the INTV conference in Jerusalem, which takes place Monday and Tuesday.

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