TV REAL SCREENINGS FESTIVAL (WINTER/SPRING 2023)
The latest edition of the TV Real Screenings Festival, in time for Realscreen Summit, showcases 16 fantastic new and returning properties from across the factual landscape, including wildlife, true crime, factual entertainment and lifestyle.
Clicking on each show title below will take you directly to the trailer.
Science and knowledge content is a key pillar in the ZDF Studios unscripted portfolio, with the company spotlighting three titles in this area in the TV Real Screenings Festival. Naked—Sex and Gender, produced by Spiegel TV and Primitive Entertainment in association with Crave/Bell Media, ZDF/ARTE and ZDF Studios, explores how views of gender have evolved over the years. “In this groundbreaking series, we gain a balanced and nuanced view of how sex and gender influence every stage of life, from birth and childhood through puberty, starting a family and into old age,” says Ralf Rückauer, VP Unscripted. The company is also touting a second season of Ancient Engineering, an Off the Fence production for Curiosity Stream, in which each stand-alone episode showcases an engineering milestone, such as the construction of the Colosseum. Rückauer also highlights the three-part climate change title Surviving Hothouse Earth, which delivers “a fascinating insight into the scientific research being undertaken to help mankind find a solution.” On the history doc front, ZDF Studios is offering the six-part War Gamers, which premiered on Curiosity Stream.
Off the Fence is also promoting several history titles, including the 12-part series Truthseekers. “We all know there’s a never-ending appetite for mysteries,” says Stefanie Fischer, managing director of sales. “For buyers looking for new answers and angles to stories such as the pyramids and the Bermuda triangle, this is the series to watch.” Fischer also highlights the four-part History’s Ultimate Influencers, noting: “Our buyers are always looking for new ways to explore history and people. This series looks at the biggest names of our past, from a modern lens, making icons such as Nelson Mandela and Marilyn Monroe more relatable to today than ever before.” The five-part Giants, meanwhile, is a new nature/wildlife series fronted by biologist and conservationist Dan O’Neill. “Dan is one of the best on-screen talents we’ve seen for a long time,” Fischer says. “He brings energy, fun and authenticity to this packed series full of incredible CGI and the biggest animals to live on Earth today.”
Autentic Distribution recently took on sales for the Terra Mater Studios catalog, including the two-part Once Upon a Time in Tsavo. “Terra Mater Studios is known for compelling blue-chip wildlife documentaries and this title is a perfect example,” says Mirjam Strasser, head of sales and acquisitions, calling it a “visually and emotionally captivating story about remarkable relationships in the wild.” The varied Autentic lineup also includes the history doc Berlin 1933—Diary of a Metropolis and the 12-part factual-entertainment series GRIP. “Speedy, high-resolution cameras record what is invisible to the naked eye and edgy, contemporary music turns this car magazine into top-quality visual entertainment,” Strasser says.
All3Media International is also showcasing a diverse slate in the TV Real Screenings Festival, encompassing true crime, lifestyle and more. Caravan’s one-hour special The Secret World of Incels “offers unprecedented access to the men behind the keyboards,” says Rachel Job, senior VP of non-scripted content, of filmmaker Ben Zand’s investigation into the world of the involuntarily celibate. There’s also the four-part Rise of the Billionaires, about Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg, Sergey Brin and Larry Page. The Kardashians: Billion Dollar Dynasty, meanwhile, is a two-parter “told with impressive journalistic rigor, featuring incredible archive footage and new insights from high-profile contributors,” says Job. The Optomen documentary “offers an illuminating and refreshingly unbiased take on the Kardashians’ journey to unparalleled fame and influence.” On the lifestyle front, Job highlights Gordon Ramsay’s Future Food Stars and the ninth season of Escape to the Chateau.
Rounding out the TV Real Screenings Festival highlights is the four-part The People vs the Klan, about Beulah Mae Donald, who took on the Ku Klux Klan after the brutal murder and lynching of her son. “This series will have you on the edge of your seat,” says Loren Baxter, head of acquisitions at Off the Fence. “Expertly produced and extremely timely, we revisit the unjust murder of Michael Donald and a mother’s relentless appeal for justice.”