Film and TV group moves to link with UK's ITV

Updated 2017-02-15 10:35:35 China Daily
Zhang Yimou (second from the left) and other Chinese entertainment celebrities at the premiere's news conference of the Chinese version of the UK's Dancing on Ice in Beijing. YU FAN / FOR CHINA DAILY

Zhang Yimou (second from the left) and other Chinese entertainment celebrities at the premiere's news conference of the Chinese version of the UK's Dancing on Ice in Beijing. YU FAN / FOR CHINA DAILY

One of China's leading film and TV production companies has unveiled plans to work closely with UK broadcaster ITV Studios Global Entertainment.

Huace Film and TV had previously collaborated with ITV on a Chinese version of the UK's Dancing on Ice. The first season of Star on Ice aired on several Chinese satellite stations in January. The show was both a critical and commercial success.

Du Fang, vice-president of Huace group, said: "Based on the popularity of Star on Ice, Huace and ITV have agreed to put in place a long-term strategy cooperation that would bring lots of creative work from Huace's film and television strategy."

Du said Huace "together with ITV's expertise, hopes to achieve an even brighter future".

Last year, it was announced Huace would remake one of ITV's scripted format shows and distribute the Chinese-version across Asia. The identity of the show is not yet known.

Mike Beale, executive vice-president of global development and formats for ITV Studios, told China Daily the collaboration is "very significant, especially with the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television here pushing this relationship forward".

"There is an understanding that we need to work together and get shows made, and it is not just about bringing Western content into China, but co-creating new content that will work in China and potentially leave China and work for the rest of the world as well," Beale said.

He noted that both companies are open to exploring different program ideas.

"There are opportunities for reality shows to work in China," Beale said. "We need to look at some of the mechanics of reality shows that possibly don't translate quite as well. For example in shows such as I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here, some key elements in that show possibly wouldn't translate well for a Chinese audience."

He said that, by working with Huace, ITV can learn what audiences want.

Separately, Pact, the UK trade association for production companies in independent television, feature films, animation and new media, is hosting an exchange program this month aimed at creating new business relationships with top Chinese TV executives.

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