Samsung TV Plus eyeing FAST originals, but “it’s still early days”

Das Boot

Samsung TV Plus is eyeing a move into original commissioning for its FAST channels, its country lead for France, Antoine Chotard, has said here at the Monte-Carlo TV Festival.

When asked about the possibility while speaking on a FAST panel this weekend, Chotard said “soon” but “not yet.” He suggested that “It’s still early days – and we are we are not there yet.” However, he acknowledged that “eyeballs are going to the platform” and indicated original commissions could lie down the road for the manufacturer.

Samsung TV Plus operates a range of FAST channels through its connected TVs (CTVs) and Chotard explained that the firm is currently focused on exclusive rights to drive growth.

“It’s not only about back catalogue anymore, we are launching exclusive channels, we are acquiring for Samsung TV Plus, in the US obviously, but also in Europe in certain territories, exclusive rights, first window writes,” said Chotard giving existing examples of fact-ent shows such as American Idol and America’s Got Talent.

Also speaking on the panel were Sandrine Durand, VP of channels distribution at SoFAST and Marcus Ammon, managing director of German scripted firm Bavaria Fiction.

Ammon highlighted a previous partnership between Bavaria and Samsung on the third season of wartime drama Das Boot, produced in 8K for use on Samsung 8K TV sets, with the manufacturer helping to finance the series.

The Bavaria exec raised the question as to whether FAST channels were the right home for high-end scripted series. “It’s a new distribution for lean back reception of content. High end series, by nature, lean forward experiences.”

Chotard responded that the scripted shows that works best on Samsung’s FAST platform are in the more episodic crime, comedy, drama and soaps genres “So it’s basically the same type of content that we still highly consume on linear broadcast – and linear streaming, FAST, is the evolution of free linear broadcast.”

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