BBC Showcase targets big spenders

U.K.'s TV export event aims to attract buyers from Asia

LONDON -- Fresh seasons of "Doctor Who," "Survivors" and "Misfits" will be among the programs looking to lure big spends from international buyers at the upcoming BBC Showcase.

Billed as the U.K.'s biggest television export event and the only one to be hosted by a single distributor, the annual BBC Worldwide market is aiming to attract more buyers from Asia and provide fresh format sales, organizers said.

BBC Worldwide managing director, sales and distribution Steve Macallister said: "Registrations are strong from around the world, with Asian participation the highest for years and digital attendance on the up as buyers from iTunes and Nokia attend for the first time."

Running Feb. 21-24, the BBC Showcase not only features over a thousand hours of programming but also sees the broadcaster persuade top telly talent to turn up to get buyers to sign on the dotted line. This year is no different, with Louis Theroux, Matt Smith, Benedict Cumberbatch, Rupert Graves and Martin Freeman all expected to be on hand to glad hand.

Other titles on show include "Married Single Other," a tale of three very different couples all trying to work out what makes an ideal "twosome"; "Strike Back," an action story of the interlinked lives of two former soldiers in the Middle East; and series two of the Kenneth Branagh Swedish detective drama starrer, "Wallander."