At the recently concluded MIPCOM, which took place in the traditional Cannes setting from October 15-20, all major U.S. studios were in full force. In particular, CBS, Disney, NBCUni and Fox scheduled special events to highlight their new slates. But the six major U.S. studios were all in Cannes with a total of 60 new series. Some of the studios reported that this market was surprisingly very hectic.
In terms of events, Disney showcased three of its brightest stars: Shonda Rhimes as MIPCOM's Personality of the Year, Ben Sherwood as keynote speaker and Ben Pyne at his traditional luncheon-presentation, plus they premiered Love and War.
Sony Pictures had keynote speaker Kazuo Hirai and screened The Halcyon; Fox TV Distribution honored "its" veteran TV distribution executive Marion Edwards with a party upon receiving a Vanguard Award, screened Mars and premiered The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
VideoAge calculated that the U.S. studios took up close to 30 percent of all of MIPCOM's programmed event hours. In terms of content, Belinda Menendez, president, NBCUniversal International Distribution and Networks, reported that compared to last MIPCOM, "We had a higher volume of shows this year and more breakout series such as Taken and Chicago Justice for NBC, My So Called Wife for E! and Falling Water for USA Network. We were also very excited to screen Jamestown, which is our next big show from Carnival [the producers of Downton Abbey]."
As far as which show has the potential to become a super hit, Menendez said, "nearly all our clients across FTV, basic, pay-TV and SVoD are enthusiastic about Taken."
At Twentieth Century Fox TV Distribution, senior vice president Greg Drebin reported that they had the most quantity and diversity of product in many years. For Fox, the current buzz is This is Us (for NBC), and there is expectation for "their big brands"--the mid-season 24 Legacy and Prison Break--which will air in March.
CBSSI's president of sales, Barry Chamberlain, said, "we are extremely pleased with the performance of Bull and MacGyver, the top two new series on television. Our number one new series Bull and number two new series MacGyver have all the necessary elements--action, adventure, humor, and entertaining storytelling --to become our next international's super hits."
Ben Pyne, president of Global Distribution at Disney Media Network, reported that in comparison with last year Disney now has more returning series than ever. During...