News


Underground Ernie moves into publishing

Joella-produced preschool kids property Underground Ernie is going to appear in print in the UK in the Panini Showtime Magazine and then in his own publication, launched by the BBC. Panini has licensed Ernie for Showtime, its weekly magazine for three-to-six-year-olds, which launched in newsagents and supermarkets at end-March. The magazine is unusual in that […]

MuchMusic launches credit card

MuchMusic, the Canadian music channel operated by Chum Television, has launched its own branded credit card. The broadcaster launched the MuchMusic Prepaid Mastercard targetting viewers between the ages of 13 and 24. Although Canadian financial services rules prohibit those under 16 having their own credit line, those between 13 and 15 can apply with the […]

Stargate goes direct to video

MGM is ramping up production on two direct-to-video movies from the Stargate franchise. The studio has teamed with the US Navy to shoot a number of scenes for the upcoming movie Stargate: Continuum, which resumes filming in May. Cast members inlcuding Ben Browder and Amanda Tapping will travel to the Artic to shoot the action […]

E! gambles on scripted reality

E! Entertainment is on track to launch scripted series in 2008. The celebrity focused broadcaster expects to pilot several scripts with shows launching early next year. "I believe we are on track for scripted programming for 2008. We’re in the thick of the development process," says E!’s vice president, international sales, Duccio Donati. Meanwhile, it […]

Jay Jay lands publishing deal

Jay Jay The Jet Plane will be turned into a series of coloring books and towels in Argentina after PorchLight Entertainment signed merchandising deals with publisher Ediciones B and Sueno Fuegino. The books and home furnishings will debut later this year. Jay Jay airs on Discovery Kids Latin America.

ZDF Enterprises ramps up copros

ZDF Enterprises, the commercial arm of German public broadcaster ZDF, is ramping up the number of documentaries it coproduces in China. Currently in production is 2x52mins doc The Chinese Wall, which is produced by ZDF affiliated Gruppe 5. CEO Alexander Coridass says it aims to delve into territories not touched on by previous docs on […]

Dust settling on French pay TV revolution

With a commercial launch on 21 March, the merger of CanalSat and TPS put an end to ten years of brutal competition between Canal+ and TF1 over prices, programming, movie and soccer rights. Pascale Paoli-Lebailly reports Pascale Paoli-Lebailly. Greenlit last January and entering its first commercial phase in March, Canal+ France is a 10 million- […]

Comment: Transatlantic travel at an all-time high, writes Dominic Schreiber

Judging by a recent interview with American Idol producer Nigel Lythgoe in the Guardian newspaper, there’s never been a better time to be British in Hollywood. Not only is the former BBC and LWT light entertainment guru running the top-rated TV show in the US, but he’s also been linked with Priscilla Presley and even […]

VCs weigh £20m fund for smaller indies

Venture capitalists are talking to the vice-chairman of UK indie producers body PACT about a £20 million fund for small and medium sized producers reports Tim Adler. Venture capitalists are in talks with PACT television vice-chairman Nick Rosen about launching a £10-20 million ($13.3-26.6 million) fund to back smaller producers. Three or four as-yet-undisclosed venture […]

Outright sells Fat March

Outright Distribution has sold health format Fat March to a number of international broadcasters including Nine Network in Australia, GTNCO in France and SBS in the Netherlands. The 3x60mins series was made for Channel 4 in the UK under the banner Too Big to Walk.