HGTV orders Cheap Old Houses
Ethan and Elizabeth Finkelstein, the couple behind the popular Instagram account Cheap Old Houses, will star in an eight-episode HGTV series of the same name slated to premiere in summer 2021.
The series, produced by Critical Content and Roberts Media, follows the Finkelsteins (pictured) as they visit cities and small towns across the U.S. to tour two low-priced older houses and share stories of the homes’ historical significance and architectural characteristics.
The couple will imagine what the houses could look like with proper restorations, and ultimately choosing which house to feature on their Instagram feed. The series also will spotlight the duo as they stop by to see restorations of saved old homes formerly featured on Cheap Old Houses.
Executive producers are Ann Lewis Roberts, Tom Foreman, Jenny Daly and Nicole Sawatzke.
Gotham Awards reveal documentary nominees
Frederick Wiseman’s feature-length film City Hall and Ramona S. Diaz’s A Thousand Cuts, about Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs, are among the five nominees for the Best Documentary prize at the 30th annual IFP Gotham Awards, which recognize excellence in independent storytelling.
Additional nominees vying for the Best Documentary award include 76 Days, from directors Hao Wu, Weixi Chen and an anonymous filmmaker (MTV Documentary Films); Our Time Machine, from filmmakers Yang Sun and S. Leo Chiang (Passion River Films); and Time, from Garrett Bradley (Amazon Studios).
The annual Gotham Actor Tributes, Director Tribute, and Industry Tribute will be announced at a later date.
This year’s awards show will be presented live from New York on Jan. 11 in a hybrid format featuring virtual interactive tables in order to follow health and safety protocols brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.
For the full list of nominees, click here.
Drive sells Greek Island Odyssey with Bettany Hughes
Funding, sales and distribution company Drive has secured sales for the docuseries Greek Island Odyssey with Bettany Hughes to broadcasters globally, including Smithsonian Channel in the U.S.
Produced by Sandstone Global Productions for Channel 5 in the UK, the 6 x 60-minutes series follows historian and classicist Bettany Hughes as she embarks on a journey to unpack the history, new archaeological discoveries and myths and legends of the Greek islands.
Drive secured the sale of the series to Spanish broadcasters Movistar and TVE via sales agent Devised; as well as Canadian channels Knowledge Network and TVO; HRT in Croatia; COSMOTE History in Greece; and Sky Italia via sales agent Full Board Media.
These deals follow Drive’s previous sales to NRK in Norway, SBS in Australia and Home Entertainment publisher Dazzler Media.
Orange Smarty secures international deals
Indie factual distributor Orange Smarty has sold more than 500 hours of premium factual content, securing package deals with TV4 Sweden, Ananey Israel, HRT Croatia, and Foxtel Australia.
TV4 Sweden has entered into a two-year, 320-hour agreement for the property-search format A Place in the Sun (Freeform Productions for Channel 4). The TV4 Sweden package also includes the first two series of True Vision’s Catching A Killer.
In a second volume deal for A Place in the Sun, Foxtel Australia has acquired 245 hours of the format. HRT Croatia, meanwhile, has taken season eight of spin-off A Place in the Sun: Home or Away in a 16-hour package of Orange Smarty content.
Also headed for Croatia are ITN Productions/Channel 5/National Geographic’s Michael Palin in North Korea, Pupfish Productions/National Geographic’s Chimp Babies and Athena Films/Channel 5′s Meet the Hedgehogs.
Royal docuseries Meghan and Harry: The New Revelations and Secrets of the Royals on Tour (ITN Productions for Channel 5) have been picked up by Ananey Israel as part of a 31-hour package, which also includes Freeform Productions/Channel 4′s property format Coast Vs Country.
ITN Productions and Channel 5′s strand of royal documentaries continues with sales to Nine Network Australia, which has picked up The Royals: A Family in Crisis and Prince Andrew and Scandal in the Royal House of York.