MIPTV: Local TV Shows Top Ratings Worldwide, Report Finds

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The age of the global television hit seems largely over, according to a study of global viewing habits presented by Eurodata TV Worldwide at the MIPTV market in Cannes.

Local series, and not U.S. imports, dominate the ratings worldwide, according to a new study of global viewing habits by analysts Eurodata TV Worldwide.

According to the Eurodata's One TV Year in the World report, presented at the MIPTV market in Cannes on Monday, local scripted series top the ratings charts in most international territories. Comparing ratings data from across Europe, North America, Asia and Latin America, Eurodata found that scripted series top the ratings in three quarters of territories worldwide. And 80 percent of those hit series are local productions.

The decline of U.S. series internationally, and the rise of local productions, creates new challenges for U.S. networks and producers who look to the global market to help finance their shows. While the increase in digital and SVOD platforms has meant there are more buyers out there hungry for content, the deep-pocketed commercial broadcasters are increasingly wary of the Made in America brand.

“You can't really make money with a U.S. show these days. They're too expensive and they don't deliver the ratings,” noted a buyer for one of Europe's leading free-to-air networks.

Global viewers, however, still seem to be open to foreign formats. Eurodata found several success stories among reality and game show formats when they are adapted for the local market. Perhaps the biggest is South Korean format The Masked Singer, which has been a ratings smash in the U.S. for Fox. Eurodata also cited new Danish game show All Against One, which added to its local success by topping the charts in nearby Norway.