Networks are about to start rolling out their Upfronts, their 2014 Programming Launches. Yes the word ‘Upfronts’ is an American term, but it’s now widely used in our local industry.
The first will be Foxtel, next week in Sydney, in conjunction with sales arm MCN. This will include “innovation and programming in 2014.” Foxtel has always had some great features in its technology, so hopefully it’s ready to reveal the next IQ.
A week later Seven begins their Upfronts roadtour in Sydney. Go-to guy Brad Lyons, head of network production, is tipped to open the presentation. Watch out for some cheeky punchlines. Seven execs have been busy in Cannes so they should have some new announcements to make. Hbbtv is Seven’s new buzzword.
In the last week of October SBS has a 2013-14 Showcase, which usually includes the summer period. SBS makes the most of the summer “off” season by screening some flagship content. Will we hear about a third season of Go Back for 2014 and more local Drama?
An ABC Upfront will take place in Sydney in late November. It has plenty of new Drama up its sleeve.
Nine is tipped to stage theirs in early December. The network has often combined its Upfronts with a Christmas lunch for clients and media, although it varied from that last year with brunches (a cheaper option given alcohol is out). It will be interesting to see if Adelaide and Perth are added to their roadtrip this year.
TEN had a lavish Winter Party mid year so it’s likely to present theirs later rather than sooner. Their focus is also on their new breakfast ambitions at the moment. And so is their spend.
Upfronts is always a time of exciting new content, casting announcements, axing confirmations, ratings boasts and execs who manage to wander off script.
This year promises to be no different.