It’s easy to get lost with all the news coming out of Cannes this weekend. Variety has gathered six stories that might have passed you by, or only just been officially annonced.
“Magnus” Notches Hat Trick
Indie U.K. distributor Hat Trick International has secured international rights to fantasy-laced police drama “Magnus.” Described to Variety by series producer Anders Tangen as “Inspector Clouseau Meets Stranger Things,” the series follows doofus detective Magnus Udredal, demoted through the ranks down to janitor, who is drafted by a Central Unit special investigator in league with U.S. military intelligence to solve the murder of a girl and disappearance of Norway’s most famous actor. The series is produced by Norway’s NRK and Tangen’s Viafilm, behind Netflix hits “Lilyhammer” and “Norsemen.” As they did with “Norsemen,” the series was shot in both Norwegian and English.
Freemantle, Mediaset Spain Team on “Game of Talents”
Global production powerhouse Fremantle has partnered with Mediaset Spain on a new gameshow format titled “Game of Talents.” The show combines traditional play-along elements with a talent show format which a press release says “proves that looks really can be deceiving.” Each episode follows a contestant and a popular celerity who must work together to uncover hidden talents of ten performers. With only physical impressions and a few personality clues, they must choose from a list of 11 possibilities. The talents are revealed in an on-air performance, and in a dramatic final round the contestants meet five new strangers, and must guess which one has a new hidden talent.
“Wild Tokyo” Docu-Series Coming Ahead of 2020 Olympic Games
ITV Studios Global Entertainment, the distribution arm of ITV PLC, and Oxford Scientific Films, a BAFTA nominated production house within ITV Studios, have entered into a partnership with Japanese public broadcaster NHK on a new 4K nature show titled “Wild Tokyo.” Focusing on natural refuges on Japan’s Largest Island, Honshu, the series will highlight the way in which wildlife has adapted to co-habit one of the planet’s most population-dense areas. The series promises stunning visuals of a side of Tokyo the world has never seen in the run-up to the 2020 Olympic games, hosted by the Japanese capital city.
David Lyle Foundation Mentoring Program Launched
On Saturday, April 6, the David Lyle Foundation, named after the popular long-time Australian TV veteran, was launched in an effort to support next-generation content industry careers. According to a press release, it will “provide guidance and opportunity to individuals who show extraordinary talent, integrity and drive to work in the entertainment business.” Initial partners are Broadcast, C21Media, EMC, FRAPA, NATPE, NPact, Pact, Realscreen, Reed Midem and TBI, with more to be announced in the future. Each year, two candidates will be chosen by the foundation’s board and mentored over the year by key executives from within the foundation.
“Takaya: Lone Wolf” Coming From Arte, BBC and CBC
Franco-German broadcaster Arte, U.K.’s BBC and Canadian broadcaster CBC have greenlit a new factual special titled “Takaya: Lone Wolf.” The program will be produced by the U.K.’s Talesmith and Cineflix. Set on an archipelago off the British Colombian coast, the series follows lone wolf Takaya, who has survived on its own against substantial odds, and the bond it shares with wildlife photographer Cheryl Alexander. For five years Alexander followed Takaya, who lives an otherwise solitary life, having swum to the island on its own years ago. Cineflix’s distribution arm will handle sales, kicking off at MipTV.
MipDoc Project Pitch Winners Announced
This year’s MipDoc Project Pitch winners in science and technology and current affairs and investigation were announcing over the weekend at the world’s largest conference and co-production marketplace and screenings library dedicated to the factual TV industry. U.S.-based P3 Media’s “One Giant Leap” was chosen as the best among the science and technology pitches – programs which aim to show how technology reshapes our environment as well as human life, while “The Doubt Makers” from France’s ZED was recognized in the category of current affairs and investigation – documentaries covering past and present issues providing insightful analysis of important subjects with a historical context. The competition is open to any creators or producers working in factual and documentary programming with co-production partners.