SCREEN AFRICA EXCLUSIVE: South African public broadcaster SABC is to issue a substantial Request For Proposals (RFP) book before the end of September this year. The book will contain commissioning briefs for all three SABC channels and across all genres, including documentary.
“This will be the biggest RFP book to be released since 2008. Parts of the book will look at ring-fencing some of the content so that it can be produced by up and coming filmmakers, as well as women.
“One of the SABC3 briefs is for documentaries to fill a soon to be introduced documentary slot on Sunday nights at 20h30. SABC3 is looking for high end documentaries about South Africa. There are so many stories in this country that need to be told and we want to be able to ship these stories out to the rest of the world,’ said SABC’s general manager of channels, Leo Manne.
He spoke to Screen Africa directly after the collective SABC Spring Showcase held on 23 July at Summer Place in Johannesburg. All three channels presented their line-ups for August, September and October.
Manne also revealed that by September at the latest, fully fledged heads for each of the three channels, as opposed to acting heads, will be in place.
“This will allow us to plan for the next three years. SABC is in the challenging position of being a public service broadcaster that has to operate in a commercial environment. While we can’t compete with the likes of pay-TV platform MultiChoice, with its first window access to Hollywood blockbuster films and overseas TV series, we’re happy with our second window in the terrestrial domain. And, there are certain things that are unique to the SABC, such as our focus on local stories,’ commented Manne.
At the Spring Showcase, SABC1 revealed that its upcoming shows include the brand-new season of the popular dance show, So You Think You Can Dance. The gay lifestyle drama series, After Nine, is also coming back for a new season, as well as Bar One Man Hunt.
Other upcoming titles include: Skeem Saam 2 (drama); Single Guys (comedy); Vuka Kleva (docu-reality); Smovana (reality series on cars); and, In Debt S2 – the reality show on finding solutions to personal debt crises.
SABC1 will also be celebrating popular soapie Generations’ 20 years on screen with a Generations Special in September, incorporating distinctive episodes from previous seasons.
Regarding SABC2’s line-up, the popular series Jam Sandwich continues its musical journey into the spring with its innovative third season. Also coming up is the ninth season of Afro Cafe, as well as the return of Motswako for a new season with a new presenter, a new set and riveting topics.
Popular series returning on the channel include: In Plain Sight (Season 6), 50/50 (Season 5), Big Break Legacy (Season 2), Ga Re Dumele, 90 Plein Street and I want to sing Gospel.
SABC3 will soon host the American soapie, Bold and Beautiful, which was previously on SABC1.
The 17th season of The Amazing Race returns to SABC3, as well as the second seasons of the popular local productions, Centrum Guardians and Ultimate Braai Master.
International series coming up on SABC3 include: Brothers & Sisters, Top Gear USA (Season 2), The Exes (Season 2), Big Bang Theory (Season 4), Desperate Housewives (Season 5), Rules of Engagement (Season 6), Supernatural (Season 7) and Two & a Half Men (Season 8).
BBC’s Natural History is sure to keep nature and animal lovers entertained in the spring with more expert knowledge and insight into the world around us.
Report by Joanna Sterkowicz