Sunday, November 8, 2015

Sore throats ?

Hyper-active Dutch media mogul John De Mol is probably the only winner as The Voice moves from BBC1 to ITV from 2017. He developed the format in 2010, and now, through his company Talpa, there are versions in 80 countries.

In 2014, Holland's fourth richest man was the target of a number of extortion, blackmail and threatened kidnapping attempts - he says that was why he put Talpa up for sale. ITV did a deal in March this year, for an opening price of £355m. That could rise to a maximum of £781m depending upon performance.

In a sort of "buy-one-get-one-free" deal, De Mol said that the next UK contract holder for The Voice must take the junior version, The Voice Kids. Unfortunately, CBBC has already bought a Romanian format, which looks like a mini-Voice, due to air in 2016.  And Culture Secretary Whittingdale J is pretty down on the BBC buying formats from abroad.  In the end, in the new deal for The Voice, the BBC may take some mild pleasure if they did indeed make ITV play slightly more for a package that ITV own.

In the hunt for Saturday night ratings, the Cohen-lead television wing tried another Talpa format, I Love My Country, in 2013. David Walliams did the pilot, and I'm guessing thought the better of it. Gabby Logan came in - and it was not renewed. Meanwhile, BBC daytime commissioners who've not been listening seem to have piloted another Dutch format, under the title Sing It To Win It. Apparently it's a sort of Come-Dine-With-Me meets the XFactor show. Whitters is already twitching.

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