Best British Documentaries, Factual, Lifestyle & Current Affairs, 1H 2018. UK Ratings #1-100

The “Best of British” is one of my most popular posts that lists the year’s highest-rated unscripted programs in the UK. For a different look at 2018 through June 30, I combined the Documentary, Factual, Lifestyle & Current Affairs categories. My expanding coverage of Audience Analysis is sponsored by Parrot Analytics. Watch out for more …

Africa’s Nature, Environment & Wildlife Filmmakers Congress (NEWF), Durban, July 16-18. The Program

I’m very excited about flying down to Durban to attend the second edition of NEWF, Africa’s Nature, Environment & Wildlife Filmmakers Congress, starting July 16. “The primary aim of NEWF is to create a path to conservation through film while discovering the next generation of Africa’s nature, environment and wildlife filmmakers.” That’s the message from NEWF’s Executive …


THE CLEANERS An Anti-Case Study from Berlin: A $1.3 Mn Investigative Documentary Premieres at Sundance. Faces Deep Deficit

THE CLEANERS ticked all the boxes. Despite Sundance selection and sales to prestigious broadcasters worldwide, the producers are digging out from a deep deficit. The business model for investigative documentaries has always been risky. It is now under siege… and needs new solutions. That’s the message presented by Christian Beetz, co-CEO of Gebrueder Beetz Filmproduktion …

Discovery For Sale?

Discovery must be in play after AT&T’s recent takeover of Time Warner with its Warner Bros, HBO and Turner programming assets. The newly combined Discovery Scripps venture is valued at more than $34 Bn. That is a stratospheric achievement for a company that forged its initial connection with viewers via off-the-shelf acquisitions like Australian lizard-specialist Harry …

The Development History of NATIVE AMERICA, a $3-4 million Signature PBS Series

NATIVE AMERICA is a premium PBS series that explores the world created by America’s first peoples. It describes their foundational belief systems that synthesize science and spirituality. The 4-part series captures the incredible diversity of the expressions of these beliefs across North, Central and South America. Providence Pictures’ President and Executive Producer/Director, Gary Glassman is …

Program Development & Pitching Trends. Podcast with Michael Hoff

Welcome to my second podcast on the business of the unscripted business. My Guest: Michael Hoff leads Hoff Productions, successfully delivering mainly male-targeted series and specials to dozens of networks for 25 years. In my recent popular post, Michael spelled out the evolving high-stakes world of program development. The Topic: Today’s Pitching Process. Network development execs are …

The Obamas’ Output Deal With Netflix. Takeaways for Producers. A Podcast with StoryCentric’s Ed Hersh

Welcome to the first of my podcasts on the business of the unscripted business. The topic: Barack and Michelle Obama have formed a production company with Netflix‘s backing. The definition of “A-Lister” will never be quite the same when it comes to pitching. What does it mean for producers that the competitive bar to earn your buyers’ …