Editor's Note: The television business is in a state of flux as the global Coronavirus pandemic continues to claim thousands of lives and impact the economy. This is one of several stories that will analyze how the unscheduled industry is coping with the crisis.
ABC American idol It's supposed to start airing live shows in just a couple of days. But last week, the prep work, including rehearsals with the finalists, was suspended, and the contestants were sent home to be with their families amid the growing coronavirus pandemic.
Imagine a world where talent show contestants have to perform in front of their mirrors instead of live audiences or where a Bachelorette can only speak to potential suitors via conference call – these are some of the possible side effects of the crisis COVID-19 on television without a script.
Coronavirus: TV shows that have halted or delayed production amid the outbreak
Like their scripted siblings, unscripted buyers and producers struggle to adapt to a new normal to ensure that the holes in the schedule are kept to a minimum and that the (reality) show can continue.
Almost all large tent formats, from American idol to Survivor Y America has talent to High school have been affected by the shutdown of production just like Fox's Kitchen master, which was forced to close in the middle of its filming in season 11.
However, reality is not running completely dry. Programs like NBC Dance world Y SonglandFox Hell's Kitchen Y Definitive label and ABC The Bachelor: Listen to your heart they are filmed and canned and ready to be placed on schedule, while the potential exists for major formats such as Eldest brother Y Love island get going once the worst of the crisis is over.
ITV America, which had to close the filming of programs like Netflix Weird eye, confident that CBS's version of British dating reality hit Love island will continue this summer. CEO David George said the program, which moved from July to May this year, can be changed in less than 48 hours. “Once the switch is turned on, we can get it to air very quickly. Right now, we are not particularly concerned, because it is a quick turn, it makes sense. We are trying to make it as smart as possible so that when (CBS) says "go", we are ready, in terms of location, constructions, casting
Meanwhile, while Fox has had to suspend work on programs like So you think you can dance (Right), his next Korean mystery music game show I can be your voice and the second season of Rob Lowe Mental samurai, can comfort the fact that you've seen potholes in the ratings of people like The masked singer Y Lego masters, although it also has episodes of Beat Shazam and its new competition format Definitive label finished.
ABC is dealing with challenges in American idolBut the network also has some unscheduled programs in the can. In addition to the musical spin-off of The Bachelor, has Jimmy Kimmel's celebrity edition Who wants to be a millionaire? deposited for April and mini golf competition format Holey Moley ready for a likely early summer arc. However, soon you will have to make decisions in programs like The Bachelor In Paradise, Shark Tank Y Dancing with the stars, which are traditionally broadcast in late summer and early fall.
NBC has been seriously affected. The net America has talent shortened his audition recordings and has postponed recordings for American Ninja Warrior. You should also consider what to do with The voices live shows, once their prerecorded episodes run out in late April. But the biggest challenge will come from the cancellation of the Tokyo Olympics, with NBC losing hundreds of hours of programming over the summer.
One suggestion is to run programs originally planned for NBC's universal cable universe, such as the new version of Talpa's crazy and aquatic format. Cannonball, commissioned by USA Network, on the broadcast channel.
Rival networks are now re-evaluating summer plans, particularly weighing whether they now attempt to schedule shows during the Olympics period after many decided not to counterprogram against NBC during games.
International formats, particularly finished British shows, are also expected to hit American schedules in a way that has never before been seen outside of a few experiments on The CW.
Streamers aim to maintain momentum during the crown crisis
Elsewhere, streamers also hope to maintain momentum in their unscheduled efforts. Netflix documentary series Tiger king About Wild Animal Caretaker Joe Exotic was well timed, as it fell on the weekend when most major US cities. USA were blocked, Apple released Oprah speaks COVID-19 with Idris Elba last week and the Amazon fashion series Making the cut (left), starring Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn, launches on March 27.
Earlier this week, Netflix renewed a series of unscripted shows, including the social experiment produced by Studio Lambert. The circlehip-hop competition Rhythm + Flow Y Love is blind and the casting began.
Love is blind evidently it has been an outbreak for the streamer; Following the singletons in isolation capsules in search of love, the show became Netflix's main show in several markets, including the US. USA and the United Kingdom, after its launch on Valentine's Day. The quarantine has only helped the numbers, adding to the social buzz of the likes of the SNL parody. Kinetic Content CEO Chris Coelen, who created the format, tells Deadline: "I'm glad people are enjoying Love is blind And if that is as a result of (being home during the Coronavirus), in a small way it is helping people to be happy. "
Even digital platforms like Facebook Watch are affected, to some extent, by the shutdown. Ample Entertainment is producing the second season of 9 months with Courteney Cox, which analyzes the pregnancy journey for a wide variety of topics. Ample is kind of lucky because about 90% of the show is self-reported by contributors and has edited around half of the episodes for the Mother's Day release, but still needs to film some scenes with Cox. Ample co-founder and co-president Ari Mark tells Deadline that he will likely shoot them himself friends star in LA, observing Corona's friendly guidelines.
How the Cable Business Is Dealing With Covid-19
The cable business is daily bread for a host of nonfiction producers with Discovery, A + E Networks and Nat Geo contributing hundreds of hours of original programming each year. There is a fear that schedules will start to run out later this year and these networks, as well as the NBCU and ViacomCBS cable operations, will need backup plans. Discovery, which was also affected internationally by the cancellation of the Olympics, is believed to have had a COVID-related green light meeting earlier this week.
Wheelhouse founder Brent Montgomery, who had to pause on a major History project as well as a series for Netflix, says: “The cable was already in crisis mode and this will exasperate that. We have seen what the main media actions have done on linear platforms, but when this comes out there will be a new openness to new business models. Unscripted has always been resilient and we see that there is a great opportunity since networks have huge holes, "he adds.
Jim Casey, the head of Paless Productions, agreed it was "uncharted territory" for the business after calling the teams back for the Travel Channel program, which included Dead files Y The Holzer Archives. "Cable networks will be the hardest hit: streamers don't have holes in their schedules because they don't have schedules, so we're trying to focus on helping our loyal customers (in the cable space)," he says.
Casey says producers need to adapt, while still thinking about production values. "You will never be able to do an intimate scene between two people who are having a dramatic conversation, you will not be able to do it The real housewives on Skype, but there is a lot of success in paranormal self-portrait shows, and the younger MTV audience has a much greater tolerance for (self-portrait shows), he adds. "People could be broadcasting Contagion Y Outbreak but that is a morbid curiosity that is very temporary. I feel that by the time the programs we're producing now, nobody really wants to think about (Coronavirus). "