×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Takeaways From MipTV and Canneseries 2019

Canneseries and MipTV have just wrapped in the South of France. Here are Variety‘s takeaways from the events:

MipTV is in transition

The organizers of the market appear to have realized that tinkering at the edges is no longer enough to meet the needs of the buyers and sellers in an industry changing at a whiplash pace. The jury was out among distributors about a proposal to move all sales houses into the Palais des Festivals: Some said that they liked the idea of injecting buzz and concentrating footfall, others that they liked their spots by the beach outside. Either way, Reed Midem’s Lucy Smith is likely to introduce changes ensuring that MipTV looks very different in 2020. The attendance numbers were down, but MipTV is still a huge and influential market – the second biggest of the year – and on the ground, 2019 felt like a transition year.

2020 dates see Series Mania and Canneseries cross paths

After being scheduled less than 10 days apart, Series Mania and Canneseries are headed for a near-clash in 2020. Canneseries just announced that next year’s edition will kick off March 30, 2020, a day before Series Mania wraps. The date change for Canneseries is largely to avoid conflicting with scheduled public holidays – notably, Passover and Easter – in 2020. Canneseries said it had 25,000 attendees this year, up 5,000 from its first outing last year.

TV is increasingly local and so are markets

There is still demand to get all of the world’s TV players in one place, but as local content gains ground, so do local events, with a knock-on effect for Cannes. Whether it is the London screenings, Berlinale, Series Mania or other events, the international TV calendar is no longer book-ended by MipTV and Mipcom as it once was. Reed Midem has recognized this with the launch of its well-regarded Mip Cancun and a Mip China event. More localized events are understood to be in the works. Just as the TV business has fragmented, so have the markets. The challenge for MipTV is to ensure enough of a spread between events that distributors can still negotiate international deals in Cannes. If attendance becomes spotty from particular territories or regions, it loses a key selling point with the sales firms.

Cannes in April feels distinctly European

Chinese content companies had a notable presence at MipTV, but it increasingly feels like a Eurocentric event. The Latin Americans have Natpe in January and the L.A. Screenings in May, the trip to the Cote d’Azur from Asia is a long and expensive one, and the U.S. giants are keeping their powder dry ahead of new program launches a month later. This year’s “country of honor” at MipTV was France, whose big players were out in force but underlined the European feel. Mipcom welcomes the studios and has a wider global spread.

Consolidation bites

It was symbolic of the current age of industry consolidation that Sky Vision execs were told of changes at their business – which will see sales effectively absorbed into NBCUniversal’s TV distribution machine – the Friday before the market. Distribution consolidation has an impact on the ground. Disney now owns, or co-owns, its own distribution unit, two Fox sales divisions, and Endemol Shine. Elsewhere, there was cooperation between firms – Paramount, for example, was working off the Viacom stand and touting co-productions by the two companies.

The Netflix effect

A trip to Cannes is no longer complete without the streamer being the subject of much conversation. “Dark” showrunner Baron Bo Odar duly obliged this time, hailing the streamer for making shows and movies the legacy players won’t. Bo Odar has an overall deal with Netflix and headed the jury at Canneseries. “I worked in Germany, I worked in the States with a studio and I worked with Netflix. The big difference is they started completely fresh, they basically started from zero,” he said. Reed Hastings and Ted Sarandos “are not like old studio bosses who run things like people have run them for the past 50 or 60 years.”

Buyers and sellers were also trying to untangle what the launch of Apple, Disney+ and the Warner Bros. streaming service would mean for them and the market. Given that none of them had a noticeable presence Cannes, there was little firsthand information.

Canneseries: the challenges ahead

A good enough number of Canneseries titles were well-received. Project-pitching sessions at In Development attracted packed audiences. Overall attendance was up. But because MipTV lasts just three days. Sunday afternoon is taken up by the Buyers Summit, and evenings are used by buyers to fete key clients or colleagues, they simply don’t have time to catch many, let alone all, of the 16 Canneseries and 11 MipTV Screenings. International press is only beginning to cover TV series, meaning few reviews. So the impact of series, however good, is still muted.

Buzzy Canneseries titles

Canneseries opener “Vernon Subutex,” from Canal Plus, was generally well-received, galvanized by a charismatic performance from lead Romain Duris. The festival went out with a bang – almost literally, given the nuclear attack climax in Episode 1 – with the BBC, HBO, Canal Plus production “Years & Years,” which received brief but thunderous applause. Best-liked of the competition entries were most probably “The Twelve,” a Belgian courtroom drama written with scalpel precision, and a trio of dramedies: fun, feminist “Perfect Life”; “Nehama,” which received a standing ovation; and “Studio Tarara,” a take on the hard-drinking, sexually abusive cast of a 1994 Belgian comedy sketch show.

More TV

  • Henry Ian Cusick

    'Lost' Star Henry Ian Cusick Signs With Buchwald (EXCLUSIVE)

    Henry Ian Cusick, best known for playing Desmond on the hit ABC series “Lost,” is signing with talent agency Buchwald for representation. Cusick also starred in the CW sci-fi/drama “The 100” and was most recently seen in the Fox series “The Passage.” His other notable television credits include “Scandal,” “24,” “Fringe,” “The Mentalist,” “Body of [...]

  • Bryan Cranston First Time in Variety

    Bryan Cranston on His Early Roles, Dealing With Rejection and His 'Erasable Mind'

    Following his 2014 Tony Award for best actor as President Lyndon B. Johnson in Robert Schenkkan’s play “All the Way,” Bryan Cranston is looking to add to his trophy collection this year with his performance as Howard Beale in “Network.” The deranged anchorman — who’s famously “mad as hell and not going to take this [...]

  • What | If

    Renee Zellweger and Mike Kelley on Deconstructing Fate and Consequences in 'What/If'

    SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “What/If,” streaming now on Netflix. Writer and executive producer Mike Kelley’s latest piece of dramatic storytelling is a limited series morality tale that starts with a high-powered, wealthy woman named Anne Montgomery (Renee Zellweger) offering Lisa, a young woman with a startup (Jane Levy), [...]

  • north american lake monsters by nathan

    Hulu Orders Anthology Series Based on Nathan Ballingrud's 'North American Lake Monsters'

    Hulu has greenlit a series adaptation of Nathan Ballingrud’s short story collection “North American Lake Monsters.” The untitled series will be an anthology, with the first season consisting of eight episodes. In the series, encounters with vampires, fallen angels, and other monsters force Louisiana natives to re-examine their broken lives. Mary Laws created the project [...]

  • Women in Animation, Les Femmes s’Animent

    Women in Animation, Les Femmes s’Animent Announce World Summit Lineup

    CANNES — Women in Animation (WIA) and Les Femmes s’Animent (LFA) have announced the program lineup and initial list of speakers for the third Women in Animation World Summit, which will take place June 10 in conjunction with the Annecy Intl. Animation Festival and Mifa. The summit will feature a day-long symposium of panels and [...]

  • Kanye West Slams Liberals for ‘Bullying’

    Kanye West Slams Liberals for ‘Bullying’ Trump Supporters in David Letterman Interview

    The Daily Beast today published a preview of David Letterman’s interview with Kanye West — which addresses music, fashion, West’s late mother and of course his much-criticized support of President Trump — on his Netflix show, which begins streaming next Friday, May 31. The article praises the hour-long session as “not only one of the [...]

  • Michael Portillo Making ‘The Trouble With

    Michael Portillo Making ‘The Trouble With the Tory Party’ for Viacom’s Channel 5

    On the day that British Prime Minister Theresa May announced her resignation plans, a prominent former politician has unveiled a two-part documentary about the troubles faced by her Conservative party. Michael Portillo is a former senior Conservative politician and leadership candidate. As the starting gun is sounded on a fresh leadership race, his documentary “Portillo: [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content