The first five episodes of Season 2 of Top Gear China have amassed a combined audience of 217 million across TV and online. The Honyee Media show, which launched October 19 on Shanghai Dragon TV, was No. 1 in its time slot for the past four weeks across all cable and pay TV channels nationwide, with an average weekly audience of 9 million tuning in to watch live. The fifth and latest episode of a run of 10 drew the highest audience to date, more than 11 million viewers. Top Gear China’s first five episodes also 173 million total views across eight of the country’s largest online video websites. The opening episode was the second-most talked-about topic across all Chinese social media. “The success of Top Gear in China once again demonstrates the unique appeal of the world’s favorite motoring entertainment show,” said Paul Dempsey, President of Global Markets at BBC Worldwide, which licensed the format to Honyee Media.” It’s also testament to a successful collaboration between our own UK producers and their Chinese counterparts who have recreated a British institution for a whole new audience.”
Reagan is set to become an international co-production as producers have announced a financing and co-production agreement with Juan Garcia Peredo’s Spain-based Elipsis Capital. The historical drama’s story is told through the unique voice of Viktor Petrovich, a KGB agent who closely followed Ronald Reagan since his days in Hollywood. From the classroom to the Oval Office, the film follows Reagan’s steps from boyhood to his eventual defeat of the “Evil Empire.” The cast includes David Henrie as young Reagan, Robert Davi as Soviet General Secretary Leonid Brezhnev and Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa as Japanese Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nasone. Howard Klausner wrote the script. “We are very excited to have Elipsis Capital as a partner,” said Mark Joseph, who is producing Reagan with Ralph Winter. “We’re gratified to realize that the international interest in our film is just as strong as that of the American audience.” The deal was negotiated by Stanley Preschutti for the Reagan film and KPMG Spain’s Alberto Burgeon Minguela at the Toronto International Film Festival. “Ronald Reagan isn’t just an American icon — his story of going from a small American town to Hollywood and then the White House is of interest to people all around the world,” Burgueno Minguela said.