2016 was marked by the rise of programmes created in France, and fiction in particular.

“One factor behind this success is the selection of subject material that is completely in line with the expectations of a global audience,” – Frédéric Vaulpré, Eurodata TV Worldwide Director.

For several years now, French thrillers have been showcased around the world. Resolutely influenced by Scandinavian creative output, these thrillers have become increasingly exotic, intense and mysterious. French production has managed to lead this trend by adding a dose of realism and well-structured storylines: Cannabis, The Frozen Dead and Ouro serve as perfect examples.

French made factual programmes also attempt to give a response to topical issues that are raised all over the world: the place of the new generations, relationships with technology, society’s influence on behaviour. This can be seen in formats such as: How I Became Invisible and Alone at Home.

In youth television, looking at cartoons, those created in France are also in step with foreign production, in particular as regards the global trend for female empowerment: in many foreign formats, the main character is a heroine who takes on subjects that were previously the sole domain of male heroes, such as defending the city (Fantasy Patrol) and taking part in sporting clashes (Bella and the Bulldogs). This is also true in France where heroines fight crime (Mirette Investigates) and hunt for treasure (Pirata & Capitano).

Of the new factual, fiction and entertainment programmes broadcast on French screens in 2016 (excluding one-off programmes), the majority were local productions: 55% of new launches were produced in France. More and more of these local programmes are being exported : 186 shows created in France launched abroad in 2016 – 26% more than in 2015; these exports are dominated by factual programmes, followed by fiction and entertainment.

This means that France is now ranked third in the TV export rankings globally (excluding one-off programmes),  up one place from 2015. Additionally, it is now the leading non-English language exporter globally, ahead of Germany.

Some exported French formats have gone on achieve global success. In the fictional genre, The Bureau has been a hit in several countries. For example, in Portugal, when it first aired, audience figures for the RTP2 channel increased by 40%.  The documentary series “Face to Face”, which presents key moments from history through the lens of the rivalry between two leading personalities, has been exported to a large number of countries. This series also won the Prix Export 2017 awarded by TV France International. Finally, the cartoon Molang continues to travel well in 2017, finding success with audiences in Belgium, the United States and Australia.

The findings have been compiled by Eurodata TV.

“This study underlines the growing attraction for French programmes, as well as the quality of audio-visual content production in France that has an appeal outside of our borders,” – Mathieu Béjot, Managing Director of TV France International.

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