Zig Zag, IMTV and BBC Studios partner on hybrid dating-crime format

South Korean producer IMTV, Zig Zag Productions and BBC Studios Distribution have partnered on a hybrid dating-crime procedural format.

Dating Detectives will see real detectives help hopeful singles uncover their ideal partners using investigation techniques.

The detectives will use real forensics, interrogation and psychological profiling methods to test daters’ inherent goodness, ethics, kindness and generosity – all filmed via hidden cameras.

Detectives will then consult their findings to whittle down the best matches for a contestant.

Zig Zag Productions originated the format and co-developed it with South Korean prodco IMTV, with both Korean and English-language broadcast pilots produced.

IMTV’s South Korean version was produced for broadcast on CJ ENM’s general entertainment channel tvN.

A UK broadcast partner has not yet been disclosed.

BBC Studios Distribution co-funded development and holds worldwide distribution rights to the format in all territories except the UK and South Korea.

Most recently, Zig Zag signed a distribution deal with DRG for its South Korean factual production Future Human: AI.

The business recently struck a partnership with UK-based Wingman Productions on a co-development of shiny-floor gameshow The Tower, which was funded by A+E Networks International.

Zig Zag also recently produced The Football Show for Infinity Creative Media and received a commission from ITV2 for magical sting special Ben Hanlin’s Live and Deadly.

Zig Zag CEO Danny Fenton said: “We are delighted to be continuing our relationship with leading players in the South Korean broadcast industry. This is a unique format that we are confident will do well both in South Korea and the rest of the world.”

Jaehyuk Lee, head of CJ ENM Factual Studios, added: “Dating Detectives is the culmination of a truly international collaboration and emblematic of CJ ENM’s initiative to advance the global format industry.”

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