HomeNewsAn international showcase of TV series beyond American dominance

    An international showcase of TV series beyond American dominance

    Brian Cox (who plays Logan Roy in the

    The 13th edition of the Series Mania Festival presents an interesting paradox. From Marcia Cross, who played Bree Van de Kamp on Desperate Housewives, to Casey Bloys, the head of the American channel HBO, to the showrunner Lisa Joy, who is chairing the jury this year, the Americans are back in Lille after three years of restrictions due to successive waves of Covid-19. And yet, the series that will be presented to festival-goers from March 17 to 24 (more than 70,000 attended last time) come increasingly less from the United States. This serves as proof that the genre is continuing to spread throughout the world despite an uncertain and highly competitive economic context.

    For the first time, the festival will present a Greek series (Milky Way) and an Iranian one (The Actor) in international competition. The public will also be able to discover an astonishing Indo-Pakistani production (Barzakh) in the International Panorama selection, alongside fictional works from countries that regularly have a presence at the festival: Spain, Canada and Israel.

    Read more Series Mania festival looks abroad with 2023 selection

    To this must be added a French competition essentially carried by series developed and performed by women: The Hikers (“The Hikers”), aspergirl and Split. There’s also the now traditional Night of Comedies and a slew of short formats, which make Series Mania an increasingly substantial festival. In all, festival-goers will be able to discover, or even rediscover, more than 50 titles. This year’s Series Mania is organizing a nostalgia sequence around Thierry la Fronde (Terry the Sling), the first episode of which was broadcast exactly 60 years ago and which reminds us, if need be, of France’s rich serial past.

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    “In recent years, the series landscape has continued to globalize,” said Frédéric Lavigne, the festival’s artistic director, “driven by the creation of hundreds of platforms, which are often steered by the work of young filmmakers.” That the opening series, Greek salad (“Greek Salad”), is by Cédric Klapisch, creator of LaCinetek and director of the first episodes of Ten percent (“Call My Agent!”), only confirms the permeability of the two worlds. “The domination of American platforms should not overshadow the strong presence of local players,” added Lavigne. “Moreover, these major platforms are offering more and more non-English content.”

    The creative ecosystem and the economic model of the platforms will be widely discussed in the professional part of the festival, The Forum, as well as during the Lille Dialogues. Several executives and content managers from major platforms – Bloys for HBO, James Farrell for Prime Video, Pauline Dauvin for Disney+France and Marco Nobili for Paramount+ – are expected to give keynotes. Other topics discussed at The Forum will be series marketing, a sensitive issue in this attention-centered economy, and environmental responsibility, “both in what series show and in the way they are produced,” said Lavigne.

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