Television Business International

Sky launches €2m Irish entertainment fund

Formats-logo-460_2Phil Edgar JonesEuropean satcaster Sky has created a €2.2 million (US$2.6 million) fund to find Irish entertainment programming.

The pot will be used to create a show for flagship Sky network Sky 1, and comes after the pay TV service previously commissioned Irish comedy Moone Boy and factual entertainment show 50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy.

Sky head of entertainment Phil Edgar Jones (pictured) was in Dublin last week to call for pitches for entertainment, factual entertainment and comedy shows from Irish indie producers.

On a wider scale, Sky has committed to producing original shows in each territory it has a pay TV service, namely the UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria and Italy. It is also lining up an SVOD service in Spain.

Sky 1, meanwhile, is being repositioned with an edgier, more grown up focus, and the shows are planned to reflect this.

In October, Sky is launching three entertainment formats: Sing: Ultimate A Cappella, Carmageddon and Revolution.

“Ireland has a thriving production sector and we want to bring the biggest and best of Irish entertainment to Sky customers across Europe,” said Edgar Jones. “Sky 1 is the home of entertainment and we are looking for bold, action-packed shows. We’re very excited and encouraged by the discussions we have been having with Irish Indies.”

Sky Ireland managing director J.D. Buckley called the fund’s creation “wonderful news”, adding: “This €2 million-plus content fund again underpins Sky’s commitment to Ireland and to producing great original content here.”