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International Insider: Mipcom Back With A Bang; UK Gov’t Loses Truss; Vue-Netflix ‘Glass Onion’ Deal; Northern Ireland In Spotlight; BBC Turns 100

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Welcome back to Insider, Jesse Whittock guiding you through this time around. It’s been a week of excitement from the international TV industry in Cannes and another one of utter chaos at Downing Street in the UK. All the latest news and views follow, so let’s go.

Mipcom Back With A Bang

Mipcom

Mandoga Media/picture alliance via Getty Images

Cannes goods and co-pros: Though I was back in the UK this week, everyone else in the international TV business was in one place – the south of France in the Palais des Festivals. For the first time in three years, Mipcom (now Mipcom Cannes officially) was fully back – no hybrid market antics here. Organizer RX France claimed nearly 11,000 people made the trip. The annual attendance announcement used to be greeted with cynical chuckles from long-in-the-tooth journalists but the sense is that number seems about fair this year. Not a bad result for an industry that not too long ago was regularly discussing the death of physical sales markets. However, as Max noted from France in his market round-up yesterday, the pure sales swamp of the past is morphing into a co-production market more akin to a Berlinale, Series Mania or Connecta Fiction. The inclusion of a 1,000sqm Producers Hub is the physical encapsulation of that change. More here.

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Delevingne on ‘Planet Sex’: The likes of BanijayFremantleAmazon and Fox delivered well attended keynote speeches, though it was Thomas Dey of ACF Investment Bank revealing all about how Sweden’s Embracer Group bought the underlying rights to the Lord of the Rings empire that really got the WhatsApps flying and delegates gossiping – at least from a business point of view. However, the one that no one will forget in years to come was Only Murders in the Building and Suicide Squad star Cara Delevingne’s talk on her experiences filming BBC Three and Hulu doc series Planet Sex. She recalled attending masturbation seminars, porn libraries and getting a blood test during an orgasm. Mamma mia. It certainly piqued/got everyone hot under the collar, as distributor Fremantle walked away from the market with 92 sales under its belt.

Banijay’s big play: First blood of the market went to Max, who scooped the news Banijay has boughtChloe producer Mam Tor Productions, its first UK deal since acquiring Endemol Shine Group in 2020. Banijay execs called Mam Tor’s founder Tally Garner an “exceptional talent who has developed a brilliantly curated slate” and we can expect plenty from the producer’s slate. That wasn’t the only M&A of the week, of course, as BBC Studios bought out Killing Eve producer Sid Gentle Films, and chatter grew around consolidation in the distribution market, which has been buzzing after Banijay announced earlier this month it was buying Australia’s Beyond International. ITV Studios experienced an awkward moment when its press breakfast was interrupted by the news ITV is considering selling its production and sales arm to resurrect its share price, and Fremantle and Banijay were linked with a deal with Canada’s Cineflix but both are believed to be distancing themselves as of right now. However, my sources tell me this is a live one and we’ll be keeping a close eye on developments. For our full coverage of Mipcom Cannes, click here and read on.

UK Government Loses Truss

 Liz Truss.

Liz Truss.

Daniel Leal – WPA Pool/Getty Images

Will the next Prime Minister please stand up?: We could reserve a weekly spot in this column for the carnage that unfolds in the current UK government on virtually a daily basis. Yesterday, Liz Truss the entered the record books by announcing she was leaving office – marking the shortest run in history. Having replaced the deposed Boris Johnson, her tenure was certainly eventful but doomed from almost the start. She became PM just before Queen Elizabeth II passed away (Truss’ anointment was the monarch’s final public work, in fact) and then released a mini-budget that was roundly rejected by all ends of the political spectrum and saw the pound crash as banks and overseas investors distanced themselves from it. She attempted to backtrack, but the country had made up its mind and she resigned yesterday. A new leader contest is open – meaning Britain will soon have its third Prime Minister in four months. The Conservative Party’s rivals are demanding the chaos is ended with a general election but this isn’t realistically going to happen. The rumor is Johnson is planning to run again, and who knows where that will lead. Some light-hearted relief was found in a tabloid paper running a live-feed of a lettuce all week to see if it or Truss would last longer. The lettuce won. However, it’s been another damaging week for the UK and its international standing. Read Zac’s report on Truss’ exit here

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Be careful what you say: Elsewhere in British politics this week, Channel 4 News presenter Krishnan Guru-Murthy was suspended for a week after being caught on mic calling Tory MP Steve Baker a “c***.” The pair had engaged in a testy conversation about the chaos surrounding the Conservative’s leadership. Naughty, Krishnan. Nadine Dorries was also roasted, but by a committee of MPs who’ve been looking into her claims that a Channel 4 reality show she appeared on in 2010, Tower Block of Commons, had used actors rather than real people. With no evidence to back up her outlandish allegations and a refusal to correct herself on record, the Department of Digital Culture, Media and Sport Committee’s special report was scathing, suggesting the long-time Channel 4 critic had, in effect, deliberately attempted to “traduce the reputation” of the broadcaster. Read more on Guru-Murthy here and Dorries here.

Vue’s ‘Glass Onion’ Play

Glass Onion and Sue

Netflix, Vue

Tim Richards peels back deal layers: Our International Box Officer Editor Nancy secured a great exclusive interview with Vue International Founder and CEO Tim Richards revealed how Vue struck unprecedented 30-day theatrical window deals for the UK, Germany and Italy with Netflix to show Daniel Craig whodunnit sequel Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery for 30 days before it jumps to the streamer. This followed years of discussions with Netflix, which has to this point steadfastly refused to play ball with exhibitors. Among the nuggets in the wide-ranging interview, Richards reveals he’s hoping Apple will be the next streamer to come round to the value of a theatrical window and that he’d like blockbuster TV like Game of Thrones shown on the big screen. Go much deeper.

‘The Crown’ Faces Backlash

Imelda Staunton as The Queen and Judi Dench
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Netfliz/Christie Goodwin/WireImage

‘Fictional’ account: It’s been a tough week for those behind The Crown, Netflix’s ultra-popular royal family drama. While anticipation built for season five’s November launch through a series of first-look images and a powerful trailer released yesterday, the series has been getting a pounding from several different angles. The season will be among The Crown’s most controversial to date, featuring the circumstances around the divorce of Prince Charles, now King Charles III, and Diana among other plotlines. However, Dame Judi Dench was among a number of public figures who slammed the show’s upcoming season in a blistering open letter, saying Netflix was portraying “an inaccurate and hurtful account of history.” Netflix responded by quietly adding a disclaimer noting the show is “fictional” to the latest trailer’s description – something it has resisted doing until now. Full coverage here.

In the doc: There’s also confusion around a Netflix doc on Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. On Monday, Baz broke the story that the program, which had unofficially been slated to launch in December soon after The Crown’s November 9 debut, had been pushed back after execs were rattled by backlash against the drama. Reports have since suggested the show won’t be delayed but nothing official is coming from Netflix right now.

Happy Birthday, Auntie

New Broadcasting House

The BBC’s New Broadcasting House

Mike Kemp/In Pictures via Getty Images

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The BBC turned 100 years old this week, and we say happy birthday to the broadcaster known affectionally to (parts of) the British public as Auntie. The UK government, which has a fractious relationship with the BBC at the moment at best, changed its tone as Culture Secretary Michelle Donelan wished it well and pointed to its many successes over the decades. However, the fight for the BBC’s future hasn’t yet been fought and BBC bosses Tim Davie and Richard Sharp need to use all of their smarts if they’re to find the right tools to “guide the next 100 years.” More here. In the short term, they’re entitled to celebrate ten decades of broadcasting history.

The Essentials

Vicky Krieps, Dacre Montgomery

Vicky Krieps, Dacre Montgomery

Getty/Caitlin Watkins

🌶️ Hot One: Stranger Things star Dacre Montgomery cast opposite Vicky Krieps in ghost story Went Up the HillAnother Andreas special.

🌶️ Another One: Lionsgate is funding and selling Irish-Belgian drama series Northern Lights, I reported Wednesday.

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🌶️ Sure, One more: Max revealed The Handmaid’s Tale EP Matthew Hastings is working up a Spanish Civil War drama.

👀 First look: Olga Kurylenko in Bleiberg Entertainment’s Boudica, which wrapped shooting in the UK. Andreas on this one.

📹 Cast: Money Heist stars, Fernandos Soto and Cayo, are among those joining Vix+ Spanish-language series Travesuras de la Niña Mala.

🤝 Done deal: Blue Story producer Joy Gharoro-Akpojotor signs with CAA.

🌡️ Hot Spot: Diana had this report on Northern Ireland’s global production plans.

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Netflix & Paramount+ To Profile ‘Strip Search Caller’ ; TVOKids Spotlights Down Syndrome With Toon Series; ‘One Piece Film Red’ London Takeover — Global Briefs

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Netflix & Paramount+ UK To Profile ‘Strip Search Caller’

Netflix and Paramount+ have struck a first of its kind-of-deal over a true crime documentary telling the story of the strip search caller in the U.S. Paramount+ has taken UK rights to Pervert: The Hunt for the Strip Search Caller and Netflix has rest of world on the doc, which it will be calling Don’t Pick Up the Phone. The deal is believed to be the first time two streamers have worked in such a way in the UK and rest of world. The doc tells the shocking story of a hoax caller who targeted fast food restaurants across the U.S. – posing as a police officer investigating a theft, the caller instructed managers to strip-search the young female employees he said were suspects. For many victims, what began as a humiliating strip search escalated into sexual abuse.

Canada’s TVOKids Spotlights Down Syndrome In Animated Series ‘Griffin And Turner’

EXCLUSIVE: Ontario, Canada’s TVOkids and Big Jump Entertainment are working on 2D-animated series Griffin and Turner. Based on real Canadian brothers who a significant online following, the show follows the supportive pair as they, their friends and family undertake personal challenges but focus on the journey rather than winning. Turner has Down syndrome, and TVOKids executive producer Kirsten Hurd noted the series has been developed in consultation with the Down syndrome community. Producer Big Jump is behind shows such as Shutterbug and Big Words, Small Stories.

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London Gets ‘One Piece Film Red’ Takeover After Record Haul

To celebrate the record-breaking haul of One Piece Film Red in the UK, the Straw Hat Pirates are set for a takeover of iconic London locations on November 26. Via local distributor Anime Limited and Toei Animation, the cast and memorable scenes from the series will be projected onto the County Hall of London, opposite the London Eye as well as other key locations. One Piece Film: Red has grossed over £800,000 in the UK and Ireland since it released earlier this month, making it the biggest of the long-running franchise. A phenomenon in Japan, One Piece Film Red has grossed $162M to date worldwide 



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‘All Quiet On The Western Front’, ‘Belfast’ Top 2022 EFA Arts & Crafts Awards

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Edward Berger’s All Quiet On The Western Front and Kenneth Branagh’s Belfast top the European Film Academy’s Excellence Awards honoring achievement in the arts and crafts categories, the winners of which were announced on Wednesday.

Belfast won best European Production Design for Jim Clay, whose credits include Children Of Men, for which he won a Bafta in 2006, and Murder On The Orient Express.

The drama, set against the backdrop of the beginnings of “The Troubles” in Northern Ireland in 1969, also won best European Costume Design for Charlotte Walter (Blithe Spirit, Misbehaviour)

Netflix-backed German WWI drama All Quiet On The Western Front won best European Make-up & Hair for Heike Merker, and Best European Special Effects for Frank Petzold, Viktor Müller and Markus Frank.

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 In other categories, best European Cinematography was won by Kate McCullough for her work on Colm Bairéad’s Irish-language drama The Quiet Girl.

Best European Editing went to Özcan Vardar and Eytan İpeker for Turkish director Emin Alper’s drama Burning Days.

Polish composer Paweł Mykietyn won best European Original Score went for Jerzy Skolimowski’s EO.

Best European Sound went to Simone Paolo Olivero, Paolo Benvenuti, Benni Atria, Marco Saitta, Ansgar Frerich & Florian Holzner for Michelangelo Frammartino’s cave exploration drama The Hole.

The winners, which are decided by a special expert jury, will receive their awards at the European Film Awards ceremony on 10 December in Reykjavík.

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Jennifer Lopez’s Social Media Mysteriously Goes Dark

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EXCLUSIVE: The actress, producer and top-selling performing artist’s social media channels including Instagram, Facebook, Tik Tok and Twitter have suddenly gone dark in their featured/cover images.

Reps for Jennifer Lopez were unavailable for comment, but we hear from others that The Hustlers and Marry Me actress is on the verge of announcing a new project.

Here’s a look at her Instagram tonight:

While Lopez’s Instagram had erased all posts, a trail of her previous postings remained on Facebook, Tik Tok and Twitter. Across all four social media portals, Lopez counts close to 347M followers, the majority of that coming from her Instagram.

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Lopez’s Nuyorican Productions in June 2021 signed a multi-year first-look deal with Netflix spanning feature films, TV series and unscripted content, with an emphasis on projects that support diverse female actors, writers and filmmakers. Lopez co-runs Nuyorican Productions with her producing partner Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas.

Lopez scored her best opening for a live-action movie at the domestic box office with STX’s 2019 stripper caper Hustlers which debuted to $33.1 million, and grossed $105M stateside, $157.6M worldwide.  As a recording artist, Lopez has sold over 70 million albums, with J.Lo became her bestselling album with 3.8M copies sold in the U.S. and 12M global. Her Netflix thriller The Mother from director Niki Caro is set to debut in May. Her romantic comedy Shotgun Wedding with Josh Duhamel will hit Prime Video on Jan. 27.

On Facebook, one of her followers, Steffany Merino wrote, “What’s happened? Hope you and your wonderful family are ok. I’ll pray for your health and safety.”

Again, we hear something special is in the works in the next few days.



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