MIPCOM Picks: Alicia’s Picks

September 1, 2006

It had me at ‘Mania.’ The title, which suggests an exploration of unthinkable psychiatric disorders – not exactly light Sunday morning viewing, I know – intrigued me, but it was the series’ high-quality production, sound design and brilliant CG (you know it’s good when it blends in rather than distracts) that really got me hooked.

One of the episodes in a three-part series on different sorts of mania, ‘Pyromania’ brims with images as dark and stylish as those in David Fincher’s Seven. The visuals were paired with a narrator with an ultra-smooth voice describing this sinister obsession, leaving me partially horrified, yet fully captivated.
Partners: Firecracker Films (London) for Channel 4 (UK), through RDF Rights (London)
Wrapping: Completed
Length: 3 x 50 minutes
Rights: Worldwide, except UK

Short Takes
Sometimes the way a story is told pulls me into a show even if I’m not interested in the topic itself. That’s why I was impressed by Short Takes, a three-part series that uses brief doc, animation and comedy segments to cover a different theme in each episode. So while I’m not one to gamble (not surprising since I consider it a risk to eat yogurt after its expiry date), I was still taken by the episode on gambling and its cheeky animated tour through the history of the hobby, hosted by a poker chip named – wait for it – ‘Chip.’ It’s also handy that the program’s ‘quick hits’ model lets you drop in halfway through and still be able to enjoy it.
Partners: produced by Zig Zag Productions (London), through Cable Ready (Connecticut)
Aired previously on: TLC (US), 2005
Length: 3 x 60 minutes
Rights: Worldwide, except US and Canada

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 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.