EXCLUSIVE: Hit Australian unscripted format You Can’t Ask That is heading to the U.S. following a deal between Oz broadcaster ABC and U.S. producer Current Flow Entertainment, which has picked up English and Spanish-language remake rights for the territory.
The unflinching and heartwarming show, which has been hailed for its diversity, offers intimate glimpses into the lives of people who are often marginalised in society. Featuring participants from all walks of life, the show breaks down stereotypes by answering questions people tend to feel uncomfortable to ask. Each episode focuses on a single group (such as people of short stature, fat people, suicide attempt survivors, former cult members, recent war veterans, Muslims, refugees, ex-reality TV stars, blind people and others) and challenges them with frank and often confronting questions, all of which are sourced anonymously from the public.
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The original Australian version of the show is currently in post-production on its sixth season, with formats already sold by ABC Commercial into Canada, Spain, Norway, Netherlands, Italy, Poland, New Zealand and Israel.
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The deal was negotiated by and between Linda Lichter of Lichter, Grossman, Nichols, Adler, Feldman and Clark on behalf of Current Flow Entertainment and Katherine McMillan of ABC Commercial.
Alexander Vinnitski, CEO of LA-based Current Flow, said: “There is no format quite like You Can’t Ask That and the timing for its introduction to the American audiences couldn’t be better than it is now. We have been living through the turbulent times of social distancing and self-isolation as well as political disarray in America and all we want is feel connected with each other and understand each other better. You Can’t Ask That achieves an amazing feat of bringing people closer by helping remove stigmas and prejudices from those we tend to otherwise ignore and write off in society and see them in a much different and positive light. If you saw the incredible clip of Tyler Merritt on the Jimmy Kimmel Show called Before You Call The Cops, which aired on the day of George Floyd’s death, you most certainly had an emotional glimpse into You Can’t Ask That even if you didn’t know it.”
He continued: “Lastly, the show is very contained, which allows for both its English as well as Spanish language versions to be produced cost effectively during and after the pandemic.”
“With its universal themes and unique ability to explore our differences, You Can’t Ask That has been extremely popular with audiences around the world,” added Jessica Ellis, Head of Content Sales & Distribution, Australian Broadcasting Corporation Commercial. “We’re thrilled to be partnering with Current Flow Entertainment and look forward to seeing what the future holds in the US territory.”
Vinnitski has previously worked at companies including Tanya Wexler’s Co-Op Entertainment and film sales firm The Exchange.
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