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Fox, de Mol seek out “Utopia”

U.S. broadcaster Fox has commissioned John de Mol's Talpa Media USA to create an American version of Dutch unscripted series Utopia
January 24, 2014

U.S. broadcaster Fox has commissioned John de Mol’s Talpa Media USA to create an American version of Dutch unscripted series Utopia.

The series will move a group of everyday people to an isolated, undeveloped location for an entire year, challenging them to create their own civilization. The show debuted on SBS6 in Holland earlier this month, where is ranked as the network’s highest-rated unscripted premiere in six years.

Cameras will follow participants 24/7, and viewers will be able to follow proceedings online, as well as on TV.

Utopia will be the largest, most ambitious social experiment on television, and I’m thrilled that Talpa Media USA has chosen Fox as its U.S. broadcast partner,” said Simon Andreae, Fox’s executive VP of alternative entertainment.

“The series offers people from all walks of life the chance to start all over again and re-write the rules of civilization as we know it. It addresses fascinating and fundamental questions about human law, morality and social structures, wrapped in an irresistible and truly forward-thinking television format.”

De Mol, who serves as an EP on the project, added: “Fox’s speed and passion for the project, combined with its pioneering reputation in the unscripted field, make it the perfect home for this unique proposition.

“The key questions Utopia asks are, ‘Are people able to create an ideal society from scratch? And will it be ultimate happiness or complete chaos?’ What makes this even more interesting to watch, both on television and online, is the question that viewers undoubtedly will ask themselves: ‘What would I do?’”

 

 

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for HMV.com. As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.

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