Canadian, Russian companies team on Summit Series doc
Canadian prodcos Connect3 Media and Yap Films are partnering with Russian producer 1-2-3 Production to co-develop Seventy-Two (w/t), a documentary series exploring the 1972 Summit Series between Canada and the USSR, a pivotal moment in one of the world’s biggest sporting rivalries.
The 1972 event saw the top athletes from the two countries coming together for a winner-takes-all series of games in Canada and Russia. The legendary set of games was infused with Cold War politics and intense feelings among both players and fans. In Canada, the games were set against a backdrop of a homegrown terrorist movement, while KGB agents and Soviet soldiers sat in the stands for the Moscow games.
Seventy-Two is promising to deliver the definitive history of the event. Dan Diamond, who has written more than a dozen books in conjunction with NHL teams and was named in The Hockey News‘ inaugural list of 100 People of Power and Influence in Hockey, will executive produce the series. Igor Kuperman, former assistant general manager for the Russian Olympic hockey team and the first European to work for an NHL team’s front office, also serves as an executive producer.
“The incredible personal stories, strong characters and physical drama of the ’72 Series set against the geo-political environment where Cold War rivals tried everything to gain the upper hand will give this series huge global appeal, even in those parts of the world where ice hockey isn’t the most popular sport,” said Pablo Salzman, president of Connect3 Media in a release.
Added Nelly Yaralova, general producer at 1-2-3 Production: “We are thrilled to be bringing together producers from Canada and Russia and the perspectives of key insiders on both sides of the Summit Series to reveal the definitive history of why this showdown mattered so much and has left an imprint on the sport that’s visible to this day.”
New format Surprize Fund hitting Dutch TV
A new family-focused game show, Surprize Fund, will premiere on Dutch broadcaster SBS 6 in early 2022.
Surprize Fund was created by Youngest Media and Talpa Concepts, and will be produced by ITV Studios Netherlands. The format will be distributed by BBC Studios.
The series is described as a “feel-good game show,” and follows an unsuspecting contestant lured to a TV studio under a false story, where they find 15 family members and friends, who, prior to the contestant’s arrival, individually accumulated an amount of money by answering questions. The amount they collected makes up the prize pool, known as the Surprize Fund. To win the money, the contestant must answer the same questions, with each wrong answer eliminating three loved ones.
“Surprize Fund combines big emotion, big laughs and big money, so (it) is the perfect feel good entertainment show for our times. We’re very excited to be partnering with Talpa Concepts to combine our track records of creating global hits and bring this show to life,” said Youngest Media co-founders David Flynn and Lucas Church in a release.
A Real Job: Nurses format headed for Germany
Newen Connect, the distribution arm of French TV prodco Newen, has announced that its factual entertainment format, A Real Job: Nurses, has been commissioned by Germany’s ProSieben SAT.1 as Die Herzblut-Aufgabe – Promis in der Pflege.
The format, originally created and produced by De Mensen for VTM in Belgium, sees celebrities set to work in a real hospital, from the emergency room to the geriatric ward to the oncology unit, learning first-hand about the challenges faced by nurses and other healthcare staff. The new German version (5 x 90 minutes) will premiere on ProSieben SAT.1 on October 18.
The new series is produced by Rainer Laux Productions in collaboration with Endemol Shine Germany, and was commissioned by ProSieben SAT.1. Newen Connect is also handling the global distribution of De Mensen’s formats.
“These last one and a half years, in particular, have shown how important nursing is. With this great project, I’m happy to be bringing a show to the German TV market that really honors this profession and hopefully also helps inspire people to take up this exciting and challenging job,” said Rainer Laux, managing director of Banijay Group’s Rainer Laux Productions, in a release.
Added Leona Connell, EVP distribution at Newen Connect : “SAT.1 and Endemol Shine Germany are the ideal partners to bring the format of A Real Job: Nurses to Germany and the timing of this launch is perfect. We look forward to taking the brand out to other territories.”