Wednesday, March 20, 2024

Wheel of Fortune: SABC picks up raft of game show format titles, BBC and Netflix content.

by Thinus Ferreira

The SABC has picked up a further raft of game show format titles through Primedia Studios like Raid the Cage, and Wheel of Fortune, while it's partnering with Netflix on a Winnie Madikizela-Mandela documentary series and is adding a 2-hour block of premium BBC content for SABC3 primetime in a deal with BBC Studios.

The SABC said viewers will see its three TV channels going through a mutation over the next three years. 

The South African public broadcaster on Tuesday evening made several show announcements at an event for media, advertisers and other partners dubbed "SABC Video Entertainment Content Festival 2024" in Fourways, Johannesburg - the first of what the SABC said would be a new type of content showcasing event.

The broadcaster used to have quarterly content screenings for SABC1, SABC2 and SABC3 which fell by the wayside years ago but on Tuesday said it planned to communicate about its content, schedules and programmes more again.

Lala Tuku, the acting head of SABC video entertainment, said the SABC is "on a mission to reimagine how we entertain our audiences".

To celebrate 30 years of South Africa's democracy the SABC will curate library content from its archives which will be played out across SABC1, SABC2, SABC3 and on a pop-up channel as part of "Shifters and Shakers: 1994 - 2024", showcasing iconic moment in programming on the public broadcaster.

"Viewers will get an opportunity to see some of the greatest moments again and we will showcase some hits," Tuku said. "We understand that we're in a competitive landscape but we stand proud of the archives we have as the public broadcaster. We've got a rich history of content in sports, arts, culture and religion and education."

"We're not blind to the plethora of competitors and content providers that have come into the space, but we stand firm and believe that the new content offering that we are going to showcase and give to our viewers will really put us into a competitive edge."

David Makubyane, head of SABC channels, said changes like Skeem Saam moving to a later timeslot on SABC1 and Afrikaans content shunted from SABC2 to SABC3 is because of changing content consumption patterns and the entrance of multiple video streaming services like Showmax, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Disney+.

"Twelve years ago we commanded as the SABC about 54% of market share with our three TV channels. Now we fast forward, we've got new entrants into the market. The media landscape has changed completely. Why we launched SABC+ is to also respond to this. The changes that you see on our channels is a response to this change that we are talking about."

"You're going to see this mutation of our brands as we go through into the next three years."

"SABC1 is really going to be about the youth - focused on young people, their dilemmas and issues. SABC2 is a family proposition channel. We're looking at the entire family and the diverse representation of family that we have in this country. SABC3 is focused on the millennials, the millennial lifestyle, the progressive audiences of this country who are also global thinkers."

In factual content the SABC is partnering with Netflix South Africa on The Trials of Winnie Mandela, while SABC will broadcast Just call me Arch about the life of Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

Following pickups of The Masked Singer SA and Deal or No Deal SA for second seasons, as well as Ready Steady Cook SA that just started on SABC3 and taking over MasterChef SA from M-Net for SABC3, Primedia Studios also acquired new game show formats like Raid the Cage, as well as Wheel of Fortune SA from Paramount Global for the SABC.

The Voice South Africa that was on MultiChoice's M-Net channel on DStv for three seasons is also being revived by Primedia Studios for SABC1 which will bring the singing competition to a public audience for the first time for a 4th season from 28 September at 18:00.

SABC1: Revamped Seli
SABC1 also has Sjava's 1-Man Show starting on 15 June at 20:00, with the travelogue show Breaking Down Borders airing from 3 July at 18:00.

The lifestyle show Selimathunzi is getting revamped as Hotspot Selimathunzi or abbreviated as Hotspot Seli, from 4 July at 18:00. The 2024 MetroFM Music Awards will broadcast on SABC1 on 27 April at 20:30.

Roxic, starting 8 October at 18:00 on SABC1 is a new talk show "confronting the toxicity in relationships as we counsel them through therapy on the journey to healing".

SABC2: Raiding in the cage
A new season of Taste Master will start on SABC2 on 23 April at 19:00 while Primedia Studios and Rose and Oaks Media are producing the new game show Raid the Cage that will start on 27 May.

In Raid the Cage, two teams battle it out to win prizes. One contestant has to answer questions in order to win time for the teammate who has to run and grab prizes and move it out of a cage - perhaps even pushing a car out - before the doors slam shut.

Big Day for 25K starting in June follows couples who plan their big wedding day with a R25 000 budget.

SA's Got Talent is also getting revived by Primedia Studios, which is also returning to SABC2. After the show that started on SABC2 switched to for several seasons, SA's Got Talent will now see a 9th season on SABC2 from 5 June at 19:00, with two episodes a week on Wednesdays and Thursdays.

SABC3: BBC primetime and Wheel of Fortune
In a partnership with BBC Studios, the SABC is adding a 2-hour block of premium BBC content - dramas, talkshow, documentaries and lifestyle programming.

Previously only seen on pay-TV on MultiChoice's set of BBC channels on DStv, a raft of BBC shows which will now be seen on SABC3 on weekdays from 21:00 to 23:00.

The second season of The Masked Singer SA, a Primedia Studios and Rose and Oaks Media production, starts on SABC3 on 13 April at 20:30. The 5th season of MasterChef SA, a Primedia Studios and Homebrew Films production, will start on SABC3 on Saturday 22 June at 19:30.

Wife Swap SA is also coming to SABC3 from Monday 1 July at 18:00. 

Crown Chasers, a reality show built around the Miss SA pageant competition will start for a second season on SABC3 from Saturday 22 June at 20:30, with the finale of Miss SA 2024 - hosted by Bonang Matheba - on Saturday 11 August at 19:30.

The 11th season of Tropika: Island of Treasure starts on SABC3 on Saturday 21 September at 18:30.

Primedia Studios also acquired the Paramount format game show Wheel of Fortune for South Africa. 

The SABC says that the game show, hugely popular in America, will run as a weekday strip on SABC3 on weekdays from 8 April.