Outrage at Not So Amazing Race Canada?
So we finally get an Amazing Race Canada, but it looks like its going to be lame version of the American race - with teams not leaving Canada.
Why would CTV do this? Take a well established successful show formula and turn it into a documentary style travelogue?Its all about the money…
…and the huge success that TAR US has been in Canada.
Every fall and spring television season, CTV sends a bucketful of money to Disney-ABC Domestic Television in return for the rights to broadcast TAR US.
I don't know how much money it is, but this has been a relationship that has been profitable for the last 10 years, with TAR US being one of the most popular shows in Canada.
Because TAR US is so successful in Canada, CTV can charge advertisers a lot of money to include their commercials during the broadcast.
Disney-ABC is very hesitant to jeopardize this profitable relationship - so they include a non-compete clause with the distribution rights. CTV is not allowed to air a competitive show that might draw viewers and advertising revenue from TAR US.
Now it seems that Disney-ABC has relented somewhat in return for the franchise fees that TAR Canada will pay. But they still are not allowing TAR Canada to be in any way competitive with TAR US.
You need only read between the lines of the CTV announcement:
"the network has ordered THE AMAZING RACE CANADA, a Canadian-produced, complementary version of the hit international series". Complimentary
is the key word here - not competitive.
"CTV has licensed the Canadian format rights from Disney-ABC Domestic Television and has selected Insight Productions to produce the series in Canada, with the support of Profiles Television."
Note that it says Canadian format rights
- not series format rights. Its a different format that has been licensed in Canada, not the original format.Is CTV being "cheap" by running a Canada only race?
Due to non-competition, CTV is forced to broadcast TAR Canada in the summer television season, when there are fewer viewers and hence fewer advertising dollars available to CTV. This means the revenue that TAR Canada produces for CTV will be much smaller than what TAR US produces for them. Which means a much smaller budget for the show. And there is no way the show can be produced at a loss - BellMedia would never allow it.
Depending on how the ratings go for season one, I wouldn't be surprised if the next edition of the show has a larger budget. But I still don't think we'll see a full TAR for Canada.The Big Brother US effect
A wildcard in this is that Big Brother US will be broadcast during the same summer time period on GlobalTV. How much time are Canadians willing to commit to reality TV during the summer?
Will TAR Canada be allowed to compete for viewers vs Big Brother US? Its a CBS show that is broadcast on Global TV in the summer.
Interesting to note that Big Brother Canada is being produced by Insight Productions as well, so in theory they could have two shows being broadcast at the same time and competing against each other.How did the Australians manage to get a "full" international race?
TAR AUS is broadcast in the Australian winter - the prime viewing time for television. Predicted advertising revenues for TAR AUS were great enough to budget for a full scale race. And there is no way an Australian version would compete with the US version so they weren't saddled with the same restrictions.Will we ever see a full international version of TAR Canada?
I don't think Canada will see a full international version until TAR US "jumps the shark". (Like a celebrity version) Once there is a cancellation of at least one season of TAR US, TAR Canada can be broadcast during a high ratings period in Canada, which should allow a larger budget and a "real" race.