NATPE: Buyers from the Middle East have been shopping for historical drama programming from Turkey’s national public broadcaster TRT.
UAE-based Dubai Media Corporation (DMC) has picked up rights to Once Upon a Time: Ottoman Empire Mutiny for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), following a deal with TRT Sales.
The 13x90′ series, produced by Hersey Film, aired to high ratings this year and TRT1 has already ordered a second season. DMC operates Dubai TV, which airs across MENA via satellite and other platforms.
Another UAE-based regional broadcaster, MBC, has also taken a TRT drama, 2011′s Ahmet the Cook’s Aide (20x35′). This show is also set in the Ottoman era and was produced for TRT by Okur Film.
Speaking to C21 at Natpe Budapest, Meltem Tumturk Akyol, head of international sales at TRT, said the two shows would start airing across MENA from next month. The deals mark the first international sales for both series.
TRT is riding a wave of interest in Turkish drama in MENA and Central and Eastern Europe. That trend started after Kanal D drama Ezel became a major hit on another Middle Eastern channel, Abu Dhabi TV, in 2010.