Docs

Sundance Channel announces “poptimistic” non-fiction slate

The Sundance Channel revealed a 2011 slate of unscripted programming on Tuesday that network execs hope will attract a switched-on audience in search of substance in fashion, design and food-focused programming.
March 2, 2011

The Sundance Channel revealed a 2011 slate of unscripted programming on Tuesday that network execs hope will attract a switched-on audience of “poptimists” in search of substance in fashion, design and food-focused programming.

“Our audience is highly engaged in driving new trends in culture,” general manager and EVP Sarah Barnett said in a press release. “We call them ‘poptimists’ as they get a buzz from discovering the next big thing before it hits in the world. They are looking for authentic unscripted television that sparks their minds as well as their emotions.”

The new series mark a doubling of the channel’s original programming hours as well as a slight shift away from doc-style to more personality-led programming, most notably through All On The Line, which stars Elle magazine creative director Joe Zee – last seen on MTV’s docu-soap The City – and Quirky, about young web entrepreneur Ben Kaufman. The slate also includes a second season of the channel’s social media success, Girls Who Like Boys Who Like Boys.

Here’s a run-down of the series set to premiere and in development:

The 8×60-minutes fashion series All On The Line stars Elle creative director-turned-consultant Joe Zee as he attempts to help rejuvenate the careers of struggling designers through his tough love approach. Each episode culminates in a “make-or-break” presentation to a buyer and promises to be 100% fake competition-and-hidden stunt-free. It’s produced by Authentic Entertainment for Sundance Channel.

Garo Unleashed follows East Village stylist Garo as he helps his A-list roster of brides, celebrities and society fixtures search for one-of-a-kind creations and fashions that will impart the wearer’s desire for self-expression. The 6×60 minute series is produced by North South Productions for Sundance Channel.

Love|Lust features celebs, pundits and industry experts recounting the back stories behind iconic products in fashion, technology, food, beauty and design. The 14 x 60-minute series is produced by Sharp Entertainment for Sundance Channel.

Named after a tech company and website run by 24-year-old Ben Kaufman, Quirky promises fast-paced drama in the world of web 2.0 entrepreneurship. The show follows Kaufman as he chooses and then invests in and produces offbeat product inventions submitted by Quirky.com’s online community of “global influencers.” It’s produced by Sharp Entertainment for Sundance Channel.

The foodie item on Sundance’s 2011 menu is Ludo Bites America, a 6 x 60-minute series about classically-trained French chef Ludo Lefebvre and his business partner/wife Krissy who both criss-cross the United States setting up pop-up restaurants and reinventing classic American dishes such as Texas BBQ and Baltimore crab cakes. The show is produced by Authentic Entertainment for Sundance Channel.

Shoebox Sessions sifts through mementos from celebrities’ formative years in an attempt to piece together who they are today. The 10 x 30-minute series is hosted by David Nadelberg, the creator of the book series and stage show Mortified and produced by Relatively Real for Sundance Channel.

Two shows in development are Neumont, about a group of techie whiz kids studying at Neumont University, and Diva of Distressed, starring fabulous financier Lynn Tilton, on a mission to use her business smarts to reinvent recession-hit small-town enterprises.

About The Author
Daniele Alcinii is a news reporter at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joins the rs team with journalism experience following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.

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