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The Wall adaptation a “failure” for RTL Hungary, says CEO

At the New Europe Market (NEM) in Croatia, RTL Hungary CEO Gabriella Vidus branded the format adaptation of The Wall a “failure” for the channel, after a competitor created a similar local version of the game show.

“We had a huge failure with The Wall, I have to say. Obviously it’s happened only in Hungary so far. A competitor has stolen the format and they made a show that’s pretty similar,” she said.

“What they did was very successful, but it shows you that major formats are not really protected. Nothing has happened other than the format was burned and it is gone. So it’s a big lesson for everybody in the market.”

The Endemol Shine-distributed format has so far been an international hit selling in 24 territories including Australia, Germany, France and Canada.

In Colombia it launched with a 40.2% market share, while in Canada the format attracted a consolidated audience of 1.52 million viewers with a 41.1% share.

The comment by Vidus arrived as CEE channel heads from RTL Croatia, Serbia’s Antenna International, Slovakia’s TV Markiza and Croatia’s Nova TV, all expressed increased interest in developing local titles over content acquisitions during a NEM panel session.

The region still has a strong affinity for linear television and has increasingly invested in creating original programming in an area where this is relatively new.

Antenna, for example, has created its own quiz show, which MD Pete Smith says is “unusual for this part of the world”.

“The thing that we’ve done recently, which has really impressed me, is created a small format themselves. It’s a little half-hour quiz format named Chairs. It’s just a comedian out on the street asking questions and you can win a cash prize,” he said.

“It’s been very successful and what’s nice to see is this part of the world create formats, which I haven’t seen happen before. It’s probably too thin to be a global format yet, but give it time.”