SABC licenses new network series from BVITV

MUMBAI: Buena Vista International Television (BVITV) has concluded a new agreement with the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) for the free television licensing of new and returning live action series, and hit features. This was announced today by BVITV vice president, sales EMEA Alison Homewood at MIPCOM.

With this agreement, South African viewers of SABC1 will be able to see the brand new drama series Kevin Hill, which has recently begun airing on the television network UPN in the US.

The show stars Taye Diggs (Ally McBeal) as a young lawyer enjoying a glamorous, self-centred life, until a tragedy in the family means he has to take guardianship of his infant cousin. Kevin has to quickly rethink his priorities in life as he learns to cope with, and enjoy, this new responsibility. The series is executive produced by Mel Gibson, Bruce Davey and Alex Taub. It is written by Jorge Reyes, and produced by Touchstone Television and Icon Productions.

In addition, SABC has licensed another series (season five) of the multi award-winning family comedy series My Wife and Kids starring Damon Wayans, which has been a number one rated show in South Africa, and a huge hit internationally, and season three of the kids comedy series That’s So Raven, both for broadcast on SABC1.

The channel SABC3 will continue to broadcast the two time Emmy-winning reality show The Amazing Race (licensing its sixth season), where 11 teams of two people battle each other in a gruelling race around the world. At each destination, the teams compete in a series of tasks, some mental and some physical, before learning their next destination.

Features in the package will include the acclaimed titles 10 Things I Hate About You, with Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles, High Fidelity, based on the Nick Hornby novel and starring John Cusack, and the cult dark comedy Rushmore, with Bill Murray.

SABC have also licensed the powerful drama The Joy Luck Club, adapted from the best-selling novel by Amy Tan, and the poignant comedy-drama The Straight Story, based on the actual journey of 73-year old Alvin Straight. Straight, upon learning that his estranged brother had suffered a stroke, decided to travel hundreds of miles to see him the only way he could - on an old John Deere lawnmower.

For BVITV, this agreement was negotiated by Maria Bayman, executive director of sales, strategic markets and Kerry Henchy, sales executive, strategic markets.

Homewood said, "This agreement will give SABC’s viewers a great choice of entertainment, from the newest network series like Kevin Hill, to classic Hollywood films. We’re particularly pleased to see returning shows such as My Wife and Kids and The Amazing Race continuing their success on SABC’s channels."

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