Eye-opening, international, new content for multi-platform that fully embraced digital and VR were my key takeaways from MIPCOM 2017. The world may be going digital but content will always be king!
MIPCOM is an education and has the power to reinforce your own strategies as a business as well as support and network you to grow the future. As an individual, I was pleased to see how broadcasters and the industry are defining 360 degrees digital strategies as well as traditional TV protocol. With keynotes and sessions on how to stand out in the over the top (OTT) and mobile space as well as defining strategies for new digital commissions e.g., ViaPlay (Nordics), Vivendi’s STUDIO+ (France) and others, it was great to see how they are attracting new audiences.
New partnerships are flourishing too as Sky Original programming and Amazon launched their co-production of Britannia, a TV series to rival Game of Thrones. Even Sean Mills, senior director of content programming, Snap INC and NBC Universal announced their JV to produce content for a digital audience. Facebook head of global creative strategy Ricky Van Veen director of video product Daniel Danker announced the launch of their video product, Facebook Watch as well as the launch and remake of a Norwegian teen video drama SKAM.
The Palais, La Croissette and Riveria were basking in the sun as meetings, conversations and networking were taking place over lunch, crepes, bagettes, champagne and canopes. It was mind blowing to see the number of exhibitors and new content within the Palais from Zee Entertainment, BBC Worldwide, Discovery and new platforms and services like One Life Studios and Jukin Studios. I could be in a queue for lunch and meet Russian content distributors one minute and then sit outside in between sessions and openly chat with African distributors after which they invited us to parties on the Croisette. Every hour there, I gained a new learning or a new contact or a new view on the content marketplace.
Spanish and Russian content were celebrated magnificently this year. TV Azteca CEO Benjamin Salinas Sada launched ‘Dopamine’ at the 25th anniversary celebrations and confirmed their international and new programming formats (https://www.rapidtvnews.com/2017101849301/mipcom-2017-grupo-salinas-aims-for-international-production.html#axzz4x5WNBzyd). In addition, there truly was a Russian content revolution where the spotlight was on the world premiere of Trotsky, an epic biopic of Marxist revolutionary Leon Trotsky, with his famously complicated romantic life featured as well as his political beliefs. NTV broadcasting and other Russian studios also showcased a wide array of high quality products. (http://pressroom.mipcom.com/press-release-en-2017/russian-content-revolution-set-to-shake-up-mipcom-2017-1004-5793).
Diversity also was a huge theme this year. Sir Lenny Henry launched Diversify TV and the Diversify TV Excellence Awards evening celebrated those that had achieved brilliance in these groups (https://mipblog.com/2017/10/diversify-tv-excellence-awards-winners-mipcom-report/). The sponsors were A+E Networks, Viacom and Ebony TV and the evening paid tribute to international programming that provides a fair, accurate representation of ethnic groups, LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) and disabled communities.
In all of this, my own question as a British-born, international Indian was…where are you India? The traditional studios and broadcasters from Star India, Zee Entertainment, Eros and more were, of course, well represented and as humble as ever and welcomed meetings and future opportunities for content buyers and sellers. However, Baahubali, Dangal…the world was asking me where were you at MIPCOM! I know you very well and your content is beyond outstanding on many levels. I want to see more of the Indian industry there, coming to showcase, use and learn from MIPCOM and to then come back with more and more blockbusters. Although India has been the country of honour before at MIP, I look forward to hearing what you do next especially in the animation space (http://www.animationxpress.com/index.php/mipcom-2017/mipcom-2017-sees-signing-of-big-deals-in-india-and-asian-market) and I also look forward to producing the future with you (http://www.artsforindia.org/areas/cinema/)
Sonal Patel, Digital Queen by Day; Charity Committee, Arts for India & Producing the Future.The views expressed are personal and Indiantelevision.com need not necessarily subscribe to them.