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Extra: WCSFP ’19 heading to Tokyo; Sky Vision, Armoza sales updates

2019 World Congress of Science and Factual Producers set for Tokyo As the most recent edition of the World Congress of Science and Factual Producers has wound down, organizers have announced ...
December 3, 2018

2019 World Congress of Science and Factual Producers set for Tokyo

As the most recent edition of the World Congress of Science and Factual Producers has wound down, organizers have announced that the host city for the 2019 edition will be Tokyo, Japan.

With the support of host broadcaster NHK, the 2019 Congress will take place at Miraikan: The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation. The program and planning for the event will be led by newly appointed conference director Paul Lewis, with dates to be announced in January.

Conference organizers report that the 26th edition, which took place in Brisbane, Australia, attracted 561 international delegates.
(Barry Walsh)

Sales Update: Sky Vision sends factual slate to Asia; Dance Revolution acquired in France

Sky Vision, the production and distribution arm of Comcast-owned Sky, has finalized multi-platform licensing deals across Asia for a slate of factual series.

The deals include more than 300 hours of factual programming for VOD platforms in China. Titles include Secret Life of the ZooThe Wine ShowArctic PerilExtraordinary Powers of the Human Body and Master of Photography. They will air on the video sharing website bilibili, mobile app Lekan.com and SVOD service Nordic TV.

CCTV’s new 4K channel has acquired 15 hours of factual content. Programs include Life: First Steps, Big Beasts: Last of the GiantsMonkeys: An Amazing Animal FamilyOne Wild Day and Dogs: An Amazing Animal Family.

Meanwhile, Armoza Formats has sold its studio entertainment format Dance Revolution (pictured) to French prodco Reservoir Prod, a Lagardère Studios company.

The series sees dancers from all walks of life competing and judged on their “revolution” moment, shot with state-of-the-art 360-degree technology.

The original Canadian version of the format, produced by TVA and Quebecor Media and developed by Quebecor Content and Fair-Play, just wrapped its first season and has been renewed for a second, set to air in 2019.

Dance Revolution revolutionizes talent shows using its sensational 360 technology as a unique and brand new method to select the best dancers of the country,” said Jean-Baptiste Claverie, CEO and producer at Réservoir Prod. “We are very excited to find local gems and bring a new revolution to the dance scene, to TV… and to France!”

“We’re delighted to announce the return of Dance Revolution, a show that has helped us discover, understand and enjoy dance,” added Yann Paquet, VP of Quebecor Content. “Developed by Quebecor Content and Fair-Play, this high-level competition has succeeded in generating lots of excitement for dance in all its forms. We very much look forward to the second season of this sensational and innovative format.”

(Frederick Blichert)

Nexstar is set to acquire Tribune Media

Nexstar Media Group, Inc. and Tribune Media Company have entered into a definitive merger agreement, whereby Nexstar will acquire all outstanding shares of Tribune Media in a cash transaction that is valued at US$6.4 billion.

The deal sets the shares at a price of $46.50 per share and includes Nexstar’s assumption of Tribune Media’s outstanding debt. Combined, the companies will reach approximately 39% of U.S. television households.

It is expected to close late in the third quarter of 2019, subject to receipt of required regulatory approvals and satisfaction of other customary closing conditions. The transaction is not subject to any financing condition and Nexstar has received committed financing from BofA Merrill Lynch, Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank.

Among the assets acquired by Nexstar are 42 owned or operated broadcast television stations in major U.S. markets and a 31% ownership stake in The Food Network.

“The transaction offers synergies related to the enhanced scale of the combined broadcast and digital media operations, and increases our audience reach by approximately 50%,” said Perry Sook, chairman, president and CEO of Nexstar, in a statement. “Furthermore, the addition of the Tribune Media broadcast assets further expands our geographic diversity, as pro forma for the completion of the transaction, we will serve 18 of the nation’s top 25 markets and 37 of the top 50 markets.”

“Together with Nexstar we can better compete by delivering a nationally integrated, comprehensive and competitive offering across all our markets,” added Tribune Media CEO Peter Kern.

(Frederick Blichert)

About The Author
Senior staff writer Frederick Blichert comes to realscreen with a background as a journalist and freelance film critic. He has previously written for VICE, Paste Magazine, Senses of Cinema, Xtra, Canadian Cinematographer and elsewhere. He holds a Master of Arts in film studies from Carleton University and a Master of Journalism from the University of British Columbia.

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