FNE at DISCOP Budapest 2011: Slovenia

By Matic Vecko

    LJUBLJANA: Original programming is currently down slightly in Slovenia, but there are some bright spots on the market as a whole, including local adaptations of reality formats and fiction programmes. And with regional international players on the Slovenian market, as well as growing cooperation among former Yugoslav republics, the trend is likely to strengthen.

    The TV market in Slovenia is dominated by national public broadcaster RTV Slovenija (www.rtvslo.si), CEE broadcaster Central European Media Enterprises (www.cetv-net.com) which owns POP TV, Kanal A, and POP BRIO, and commercial television TV3 (www.tv3.si), which is part of the Modern Times Group (www.mtg.se).

    RTV Slovenija is the source of most of the original locally produced television content. Among its most popular programmes are entertainment shows Na zdravje, Spet doma and NLP. In 2011 RTV Slovenija reduced the number of originally produced entertainment shows from four per week to two; however, new formats will be introduced in the fall of 2011. RTV Slovenija usually produces its own original fiction series and television films, a notable exception being the sitcom Brat bratu (2008), which was an adaptation of British sitcom Only Fools and Horses.

    One of the most popular adaptations currently running is POP TV`s second season of the show Slovenija ima talent, an adaptation of the British Got Talent format. In 2011 POP TV also launched the game show Minuta do zmage, adapted from the American Minute to Win It original. In the fall POP TV will launch an updated version of the reality show Kmetija (an adaptation of the Swedish reality show The Farm), which was already aired from 2007 to 2009. Adaptations of foreign programmes at POP TV is usually carried out independently, without involvement of the original creators, with the content fully localized and adapted for Slovenian audience. POP TV is not currently involved in coproduction of any format shows or fiction series with other countries, but management says the channel is always willing to participate in coproductions if the final product shows potential for the local market. They point to their positive experience with the crime series Balkan Inc., created in coproduction with Croatia, Bosnia and Serbia. POP TV also successfully sold adaptation rights for its highly successful original sitcom Naša mala klinika (2004-2007) to Croatian and Serbian television networks.

    Another popular adaptation in 2011 is the gastronomic reality show Riba na oko, (Fish on The Cake) produced by TV3. The launch of a new season is already planned for the fall. TV3 is increasing investments into its programming, which will lead to the introduction of new adaptations of reality shows, format shows, and a locally produced fiction series this fall, with specifics and titles still to be announced. TV3 participates in coproductions with neighbouring and other European countries. Being a part of the international Swedish corporation MTG, it also frequently cooperates with Baltic and Scandinavian countries, and when adapting foreign programmes, it frequently collaborates with the original creators. TV3 also plans to offer its new original locally produced programmes for sale on the international market.

    When buying new adaptation rights, both major commercial TV stations POP TV and TV3 employ a dynamic policy, deciding between formats (scripted fiction series, reality shows, etc.) according to the current demands and response from the viewers. An overview of the local television production in Slovenia in recent years shows that formats and reality format adaptations have dominated the market. There are only two locally produced scripted fiction series being aired at the moment; Moji, tvoji, najini on RTV Slovenija and Lepo je biti sosed on POP TV, the latter an adaptation of the Slovak sitcom Susedia (Neighbors).