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Channel Information

Country Focus 101: The Netherlands

Photo by O Paisson CC BY 2.0

The football World Cup has just kicked off  in South Africa and the upcoming (30th June – 1st July) Televisual Intelligent Factual Festival has a new international focus this year, so it’s time for us to look abroad to some international broadcasters. This week we have an at-a-glance guide to Dutch channels; last week it was Canada; still to come, Australia.

Ned 1

Overview

  • The largest public broadcaster in the Netherlands.
  • Key audience is 20-49 years – although they do also have older viewers. The aim is to include younger viewers rather than specifically target them.
  • They like to ‘rest’ hit formats between seasons.

Hit Programmes

  • Farmer Wants a Wife
  • Spoorloos (a missing relatives show)
  • Prettiest Girl in the Class (reality format in which former classmates are reunited and, via interviews and archive, it tells the story of the girl deemed to have been the prettiest).
  • DNA Unknown (series that follows people who are trying to identify their birth fathers)
  • The Reunion (reunites former classmates. A recent special reunited the classmates of Anne Frank)
  • Radar (consumer watchdog series)

Key Executives:

Marcel Peek, Chanel Manager

Ned 2

Overview:

  • The Netherlands oldest-skewing and most public-service orientated channel.
  • It is the fourth largest channel in the country.
  • The channel has a manly factual and cultural focus to its programming.
  • Daily documentary slot at 23.00 (from September 2010) – with an emphasis on different genres eg. art or biography on different days of the week. Slot will be filled with Dutch and foreign documentaries – a mix of archive, original and acquired.

Hit Programmes

  • De Oorlog (The War) – Documentary series about WWII
  • De Beagle – Ten-month multiplatform project following an expedition following in the footsteps of Charles Darwin.
  • Battle of the Choirs (but too expensive for the channel to continue)

Key Executives:

Bart Römer, Channel Manager

Gerard Timmer, Director of Programmes

Ned 3

Overview:

  1. Public service channel with a remit to be innovative.
  2. Launched TV Lab in August 2009 – over the course of one week viewers were invited to vote for their favourite programmes from 19 pilots. The two top shows were picked up for a series in the autumn schedule. Eight projects will go to air from TV Lab in total. TV Lab will be repeated in August 2010 (the submission process – open to foreign programmes – lasted for one month in February 2010. Look out for a similar submission call in February 2011). TV Lab is also open to ideas from viewers who will be paired with an independent producer if their idea is selected. In the last round more than 500 viewers submitted their ideas. Read more about TV Lab.
  3. Targets 20-49 year olds and is in direct competition with the commercial channels.
  4. The channel schedule starts at 19.00.

Hit Programmes:

  • They Know What You Did? (format in which contestants’ memories are erased by hypnosis)
  • 71 Degrees North (adventure reality format)
  • Family Matters (expert helps families with problem kids)
  • Ranking the Stars (entertainment show)

Key Executives:

Roek Lips, Channel Manager

Net5

Overview:

  • Female-skewing channel – seen as an alternative destination for sports avoiders
  • Starting to focus more on property makeovers and docusoaps
  • Keen to find another big reality show like The Block

Hit Programmes:

  • Love Without Borders (following Dutch women who set up a new home in a foreign country in order to be with their true love)
  • The Block
  • Ruby Wax Goes Dutch

Programme Failures:

  • Come Dine With Me
  • Table of Five (daily stripped discussion show)
  • The View (local version of US show)

Key Executives:

Karin de Groot, Channel Manager

RTL4 

Overview:

  • RTL’s flagship channel
  • Consumer help shows are a staple part of the schedule – health, finance, weightloss and DIY advice.
  • Thursday evenings have a paranormal theme.
  • Cookery shows are popular on the channel. Herman den Blijker is the Dutch Gordon Ramsay.
  • Most shows are locally produced, but sometimes they take foreign factual entertainment acquisitions such as Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen and Secret Millionaire.

Hit Shows

  • I Love Holland (entertainment show)
  • The X Factor
  • De TV Kantine (entertainment show)
  • Ushi and Dushi (hidden camera spoof celebrity interview show)
  • All You Need is Love (relationship show)
  • Let’s Dance (Dancing With the Stars)

Key Executives:

Erland Galjaard, Programme Director

RTL5

Overview:

  • RTL’s second largest channel
  • Targets a younger audience – 20-49 year-olds
  • Female-skewing formats air on Mondays; adventure programmes on Thursdays; edgy, broad entertainment on Sundays.
  • Opportunities in 19.00 – 20.30 slot from autumn 2010.
  • Happy to talk to international suppliers.
  • Looking to secure more local ad-funded programming.

Hit Programmes:

  • Who’s the Chef?
  • Pressure Cooker
  • Take Me Out
  • Benelux’s Next Top Model
  • Expedition Robinson
  • So You Think You Can Dance?
  • Rude Tube
  • Project Runway

Key Executives:

Remko van Westerloo, Channel Manager

SBS6

Overview:

  • Seeking locally-made programmes to replace acquired programmes such as Grand Designs
  • Looking for cooking shows with broad, family appeal.

Hit Programmes:

  • Popstars
  • K2 Seeks K3 (Dutch girl band search for new member)
  • Best Idea of the Netherlands (show featuring inventors)
  • Top 25 (list show)
  • Trauma Centre (docusoap)
  • The New Uri Geller – audition show in which aspiring Uri Gellers show off their mentalist skills
  • Save My Holiday (consumer show)

Key Executives:

Eric van Stade, Director of Programmes

Information courtesy of C21 Media Primetime Strategies 2010/2011

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