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Hot Properties September 2021

Programming Profile

Hot Properties playlist for September 2021


As we begin to move into the autumn season once more, producers and distributors worldwide are offering the buyer community fresh scripted and unscripted content, all available to screen via C21’s Digital Screenings.


Crime drama is still hugely popular among audiences worldwide, with a particular highlight of this month’s Hot Properties being Red Election from A+E Global Content Sales. Produced by Nordic prodco Mopar Media Group, the series follows one British and one Danish agent who have to join up to stop a Russian terrorist attack that targets a Scottish independence referendum.


Another scripted crime series is After, from Canadian pubcaster CBC. The series begins by recounting a tragic shooting that had a profound effect on a quiet Canadian village and resumes the story up to a year after the event as we see the characters begin to heal.


UK distributor ITV Studios has reunited the team behind crime hit Bodyguard to make Vigil, starring Suranne Jones. When a trawler goes missing and the UK’s submarine nuclear weapons system is threatened, we follow an investigation that unites the police and the Royal Navy.


Another crime series sure to get the blood racing is Rebecca, from the UK’s Cineflix Rights. Based on Nordic noir series Marcella, Rebecca is a police officer who quit the force six years ago, only to return and find that her last perp might still be out there.


In New Zealand, crime series My Life Is Murder, the second season of which makes it on to this month’s Hot Properties playlist, we follow a detective who relocates to New Zealand and finds herself entangled in compelling new murder mysteries. UK distributor DCD Rights is selling the second season.


The Teacher, meanwhile, aired on the UK’s Channel 5 earlier this year and starred Sheridan Smith as a teacher embroiled in a sex scandal with one of her pupils, but is unable to remember the events of the night in question. Distributor Entertainment One is handling sales.


International period drama is also back for September, with the third season of Polish series Love In Chains up for grabs. Ukraine’s Film.UA produces and distributes the series in collaboration with Polish network TVP. The series features a female protagonist who must navigate all the difficulties that come in high society.


The comedy-drama trend also continues this month, with upcoming Canadian series Sort Of. Amcomri-owned Abacus Media Rights is distributing the series, which stars Sabi Mehboob as a Pakistani millennial who, like most of us, is constantly in transition.


A more traditional comedy series is Anyway, produced by Canada’s Productions Casablanca and sold by French distributor ComediHa! It follows a brother and sister who have been building their careers in the big city for 12 years but suddenly have their mother move in, and their lives are turned upside down.


More comedy takes in the form of Divorce in Peace, an Estonian series that began airing in 2019 and has been remade in Latvia. Each of the 10 episodes is dedicated to one of the 10 steps a couple’s counsellor gives them to achieve a humane divorce. The series is distributed by India’s GoQuest Media.


The drama continues with Italian relationship series Ever After (6×52’), shown on public broadcaster Rai TV, which sees a couple fight for custody of their son 11 years after they got married. Italy’s Indigo Film made the series, with APC Studios handling global sales.


Medical drama is also on the list in the form of Practice By The Sea, from Germany’s Studio Hamburg Enterprises. The series follows a doctor who starts a new life with her college friend on the German island of Rugen.


Australian political drama Total Control returns for a second season, following a senator lurching into a world of backstabbing politics. The second season has support from Screen NSW and will air on Australia’s ABC next year. All3Media International is handling sales.


While telenovelas tend to come from Latin America or even Turkey nowadays, German distributor Bavaria Media International is selling one of its own. Storm of Love – Hunter & Prey launched last December and already has more than 150 episodes, with more in production.


Lastly, France’s StudioCanal is selling a new comedy series titled UFOs. Set in 1978, it follows a rocket scientist whose big break is ruined when his rocket explodes and he is transferred to the UFO sightings team of his laboratory.


In the factual space, I Want My Country Back – The War of The Afghan Women provides a timely reminder of what women need and want in the war-torn country. The series is made by Germany’s LooksFilm and profiles six women living in Afghanistan.


US-based AMC Studios brings a docuseries chronicling horror films like The Exorcist and The Omen, production of which was said to be cursed. Cursed Films has already featured on Amazon Prime Video and horror-themed VoD platform Shudder.


Docuseries Before They Were Royal, from the UK’s Passion Distribution, is a three-parter examining three royal family members before they joined ‘the firm.’ Originally broadcast on the UK’s Channel 5, the series focuses on Prince Philip, Camilla Parker Bowles and Wallis Simpson.


Japan’s San-In Chuo Television Broadcasting has a documentary for sale. Wa! Journey! is a factual show exploring Wa, the Japanese concept of harmony, and reveals how it fits into people’s everyday lives.


More factual content comes from Germany’s Autentic Distribution, in the shape of docuseries Heroes of the Deep. The show follows technical divers exploring wrecks and clearing dangerous material from the Baltic Sea, one of the most dangerous inland seas in the world.


Hitler: Uncovering His Fatal Obsession (2×60’) is an anniversary doc looking back on the Nazi invasion of Russia in 1941, the year the course of the Second World War turned. Contributors include eminent historians Sir Max Hastings and Sir Anthony Beevor, with London prodco 3DD Productions producing and distributing.


Moving forward to post-war times, Children of Chaos from French producer/distributor Terranoa is a docuseries about the millions of orphans left strewn across Europe after the war, and their search for their parents.


Makeup: A Glamourous History, from the UK’s Magnify Media, is a three-part series that looks at three iconic moments in cosmetics history. The techniques are then applied to 21st Century models.


Finally for docs, When the Bands Stopped Playing is a documentary about the closure of the entertainment industry during the Covid-19 pandemic. Well-known musical artists feature, talking about how lockdown affected them. US-based Television Syndication Company is distributing.


As well as documentary series, lovers of factual content can also delve into the formats among September’s Hot Properties. Survivor Australia – Brain v Brawn, sold by the UK’s Banijay Rights, maroons 16 people on a desert island before asking them to work together and eliminate each other until there is a winner.


Another factual juggernaut that continues to be popular is MythBusters: There’s Your Problem! from London’s Beyond Rights. The factual series returns with a spin-off featuring themed episodes on subjects like water, gravity and velocity.


One more gigantic format making a comeback is Dragons’ Den, sold by Sony Pictures Television Formats. Five entrepreneurs – or ‘dragons’ – hear pitches from hopeful inventors, before making them an offer for a portion of their company.


A new format for September is EXchange, from Korea’s CJ ENM. The format sees eight men and women live in a house, reunited with past partners. The show gives them the opportunity to share their experience without sharing who their partner was.


Another Asian gameshow is Stacking It! from Japan’s Nippon TV. A collaboration with ITV Studios, the show pits families against each other to see which is the best at stacking to win prizes.


Flanders-based Primitives is bringing a new format, 99 To Beat, a gameshow where winning is never the objective. Pitted against 99 other people, competitors simply have to perform everyday tasks and never be the loser.


In kids’ TV, factual entertainment continues to be popular, with the Australian Children’s Television Foundation bringing Are You Tougher Than Your Ancestors? to the table. The format pits Aussie kids against obstacles and challenges their predecessors would have faced, and sees how they measure up.


Kids’ scripted shows include B.O.T & the Beasties from distributor Cake. The show comes from a good pedigree as it is made by the UK’s Ragdoll Productions, creator of smash hits Teletubbies and In The Night Garden.


The UK’s Jetpack Distribution is bringing Spookiz, a portmanteau of the words ‘spooky’ and ‘kids’ and based on a YouTube series to audiences this autumn. The show is entirely non-verbal and uses slapstick comedy.


Another kids’ offering is Zog & The Flying Doctors, from the UK’s Magic Light Pictures. Zog is a dragon who forms an unlikely friendship with a princess and a knight and has adventures, none of which are a match for the three’s team spirit.


Deep in the Bowl is a 3D animation sold by the distribution arm of Chinese OTT platform Tencent. Inspired by a series of French comic books, the show visits different aquariums showcasing various fishy characters.


A teen offering is feature drama The Miseducation of Bindu, from LA-based MarVista Entertainment. Bindu is a bullied teenage girl who fakes her mother’s signature to test out of high school and end her torment. However, when she has to pay a test fee, she is forced to turn to her tormentors.


Finally in kids’ programming this month, Germany’s ZDF Enterprises is offering The Muscleteers, an animated series about a group of rats living in the Harbour District of a city. Pursued by cats and humans alike, the Muscleteers never let anything get them down.


Enjoy the Hot Properties playlist for September 2021!