C4 pairs with producers for ‘The Mating Season’

UK pubcaster Channel 4 is lining up a season of programming looking at "the intricacies involved in forming new human pairings," overseen by head of factual Ralph Lee (pictured).
November 9, 2012

UK pubcaster Channel 4 (C4) is lining up a season of programming looking at “the intricacies involved in forming new human pairings,” overseen by head of factual Ralph Lee (pictured).

‘The Mating Season,’ slated for 2013, will include Date Night, a documentary series about first dates with an interactive twist – viewers of an episode will have an opportunity to date someone they’re watching on the following week’s episode.

The 6 x 60-minutes series is being made by Twenty Twenty Productions. Using a fixed camera-rig in a restaurant or bar, the tentatively titled series will film singletons who have arranged to meet via a range of internet dating sites as they embark on their first date – in the same location.

“If sparks do not fly, unsuccessful daters will be given an opportunity to pitch themselves to the viewers at home, who can apply to date them the following week,” C4 notes. The exec producer is Meredith Chambers, and the commissioner was C4′s deputy head of factual Nick Mirsky.

Elsewhere, The Sex Clinic (working title) is a 3 x 60-minutes doc series from Friel Kean Films following the results of “dangerous liaisons” and exploring the potential repercussions of sexual relationships.

Commissioned by documentaries commissioning editor Emma Cooper, the observational series looks at patients attending sex clinics in London and Birmingham, and is exec produced by Michelle Friel Kean.

‘The Mating Season’ was unveiled as part of C4′s 2013 Upfront event for advertisers and clients, and will feature a number of other one-off documentaries, as well as a report from the flagship current affairs strand ‘Dispatches.’

It will also include an interactive format called Bedtime Live (6 x 60-minutes) from indie prodco TwoFour. The show will look at the act of putting kids to bed, and promises to share “the best practice for parents across the nation.”

Finally, C4 has recommissioned factual series The Undateables, with a second season following more people who feel they struggle to find love because of their disability or long-term condition; and is also bringing back Fish Fight and 24 Hours in A&E.

On sister network More4, Yotam Ottolenghi will journey to destinations including Morocco, Tunisia and Istanbul in Ottolenghi’s Mediterranean Feast; while 16 Kids and Counting takes a look into the lives of some of Britain’s biggest families.

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Jonathan Paul is a Toronto-based writer into creativity, content, advertising, tech, comics, video games, film, TV, time and space travel.