Got Talent and The X Factor producer Syco and superindie Fremantle are rolling out Matthew Morrison-fronted format The Greatest Dancer and are looking to replica the global success of its previous entertainment behemoths.
Nigel Hall, Global Head of TV at Simon Cowell’s company, tells Deadline that he is showing the BBC show, which also stars pop star Cheryl Tweedy, to key buyers this week at Mipcom and that he has a “good feeling” about its international success.
The series features a host of talent from across the world of dance as they give the performances of their lives in the search for the UK’s best dancer. From ballet to jazz; hip hop to Bollywood; the show will feature a number of genres as well as “dramatic” auditions, challenges and live performances.
“The joy of this show is you go from great dancers to the boppers,” Halls tells Deadline. “The programmes I’ve made over the years have all had heart and for me there is a joy about watching a lovely lad with eye make-up hulu hooping with a really proud dad.”
The show marks Cowell’s first co-pro for the BBC, having launched a number of shows on rival ITV. The broadcaster has ordered eight episodes of the entertainment format for Saturday night and will air it in January.
“Over the years, we’ve had massive success with ITV, but the BBC came knocking on the door. With Strictly Come Dancing [Dancing with the Stars] being so successful, they felt there was room for another dance show. No show has every captured the emotion of dance in the way that singing had. So that’s when I put my thinking cap on. From the little kid who goes to a dance school in Sheffield to Beyonce and J-Lo, what do they all have in common?”
Hall said that there’s a lot of global interest in the format and will be talking to buyers at Mipcom all week. He hasn’t yet pitched it in the U.S., but has high hopes. “We’ve obviously got relationships with the networks but we said ‘let’s make it’ and if it’s a hit they will come and buy it,” he said.
Syco’s international chief Abi Doyle will be working with Fremantle, which represents The X Factor and Got Talent, on the roll out.
Fremantle’s Director of Global Entertainment Development Rob Clark tells Deadline, “I’m especially excited about The Greatest Dancer from our partnership with Syco Entertainment; the newest format to come out of our collaboration which has seen so much success over the years. The Greatest Dancer will do for dance what Got Talent did for variety back in 2006, and we can’t wait to show our broadcaster partners in Cannes.”