SINGAPORE, Dec. 8, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — The 22nd Asia TV Forum & Market (ATF), Asia’s leading entertainment content market and conference, has wrapped up its Opening Week of activities. In line with the progressive resumption of in-person engagements, ATF adopted a hybrid format this year, with its in-person Opening Day held at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, taking place alongside its digital platform — ATF Online+.
The event was officially opened by Singapore’s Minister for Communications and Information, Mrs Josephine Teo, who announced that two Singapore media companies, Beach House Pictures, and Clover Films, will work with Curiosity Stream and iQIYI to create content for a global audience. Singapore will also continue to provide opportunities for upskilling the local industry, with Netflix conducting workshops for up to 20 local screenwriters to hone their craft in series writing next year.
ATF 2021 saw 2506 unique attendees from 61 countries and regions participating, including 16 official pavilions and 139 speakers, judges, and speed daters. The first three days saw more than 11,738 meetings arranged, underpinning ATF’s importance as a key industry platform to facilitate business dealings.
An extensive list of 3,983 programmes is listed on the ATF Online+ platform, which continues to be available on-demand and will be updated with fresh content up to June 2022.
Partnerships and Deals Announced at ATF2021
Further reinforcing ATF’s standing as a premier entertainment content platform to do business in Asia, the event saw a significant number of announcements made by both buyers and sellers across the region:
- Chinese online video platform iQIYI announced its plans to launch six more Southeast Asian originals in 2022, consisting of five new Malaysian and a first Thai original production. The company also announced a partnership with Alipay+ in a bid to increase accessibility of their platform and content to audiences across the region.
- Singapore-based video entertainment platform Viddsee announced a partnership with MNC Pictures, one of the largest production houses in Indonesia, to launch an accelerator programme to develop outstanding Intellectual Property (IP) for filmmakers in the Viddsee network.
- British free-to-air TV network, ITV Studios, saw a raft of deals made in Asia Pacific for scripted and non-scripted content across its catalogue, including pre-sales for brand-new shows Anne, The Ipcress File, Holding, Redemption, Our House and series two of Noughts + Crosses. Netflix has also purchased its award-wining format, Love Island USA S3, to be streamed in select territories in Southeast Asia.
- All3Media International also made further headway into the Asian market. The UK-headquartered studio announced that their TV series, Help and The Tourist have been licensed to Chinese companies, while Australian contemporary political thriller series Total Control has been licensed by broadcasters and streamers across Asia and Latin America.
- Dori Media Group also announced the sale of their hit telenovela, Argentina, tierra de amor y venganza or Argentina, Land of Passion and Revenge to Contents Seven Co. Ltd., one of Japan’s major film and TV content distributors. Contents Seven has acquired 60 episodes of the series and will oversee its localisation in the territory, handling translations for the Japanese subtitles. The series is slated to premiere mid-2022 on J:COM’s LaLa TV.
Other announcements made during the week came from Amazon Prime Video, who unveiled plans to expand its streaming service within Southeast Asia. The company also announced plans to open a regional office in Singapore and said that it would add Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, and Singapore to its Asian production footprint.
Hye Jung Hwang, Chief Content Officer of South Korean streaming giant TVING, also shared that the company will be investing USD 335 million towards the creation and acquisition of fresh content, with 40 to 50 new originals coming out of TVING next year.
ATF also saw a slew of companies on a buying spree, with companies such as Indonesia’s NET TV, Vietnam’s Galaxy Play, China’s Tencent Video, Turkish Broadcaster TRT World and Los Angeles-based Synergetic Distribution on the lookout for fresh content and new partnership opportunities.
ATF Pitches: Winners Announced
Continuing its tradition of giving breath to fresh ideas and undiscovered Asian talent, the winners of the ATF Animation, Formats and Chinese Pitches were announced after a series of pitches that took place virtually. This year’s winners were selected from over 203 entries across 25 regions:
- ATF Animation Pitch: Future Bros by One Animation Pte Ltd. (Singapore)
- ATF Formats Pitch: Dice of Life by TV Asahi Productions Co. (Japan)
- ATF Chinese Pitch (Theatrical / Online): 慕娘列车by Nova Goh (Malaysia), and谁主真相by Shengfa Liang (Hong Kong SAR)
- ATF Chinese Pitch (Best Online Drama Series): 再给他一次犯罪机会by Yeoh Chooi Keen & Liew Mei Ying (Malaysia)
Filipino-Kiwi MHM Productions also clinched the top prize at this year’s SEASCREEN Project Market for its for its supernatural thriller, The Witch Doctor.
Feedback from Attendees
This year’s ATF continued to provide attendees with a vibrant and engaging platform that served to advance the business of media and entertainment.
- Krishi Dutt, Director, VR Films & Studios Limited: ATF 2021 was an amazing online experience. I did miss the physical Market but was able to make the most of the current circumstances with ATF’s seamless infrastructure. I attended the Korean, Turkish, Asian and Japan Content sessions – they were all very informative. I also connected with content sellers for acquisition for our new OTT Platform “VROTT”, where we showcased International Content (Films, Series) after localising them in Hindi and other Regional Indian Languages. Thanks to ATF, we have planned meetings with content sellers which run into next week as well. It was an excellent effort and I wish ATF the very best for 2022 and hope for a physical market then.
- Ben Heng, Acquisition, POPTV: I found the ATF staff to be very helpful in providing me with assistance, which I am grateful for. Thank you for all the arrangements made at ATF.
- Ryan Lee, Content Acquisition Executive, Sarawak Media Group: Based on the meetings that I have attended, I found that there are well established companies that we can network with, both directly and internationally. The sessions have been very important and beneficial for future co-operation, which I hope will bring about great entertainment content for audiences everywhere.
- Nathalie Labid, Head of International Sales and Acquisitions, GAD Distribution: I would like to thank you as the first few meetings that I had went very well, and the event was also very well organised.
- Bujin Enkhjargal, NBC Co, Ltd., Mongolia: The list of exhibitors at ATF has been very good for us this year. Thank you for all the arrangements you have made.
- Michelle Chan, Director, Acquisition, Stellar Inflight Pte Ltd, Singapore: Everything went well. I really enjoyed the virtual meeting room at ATF.
Yeow Hui Leng, Group Project Director of ATF, said, “We are humbled by the industry’s continuous support of ATF as a trusted and proven Asian platform from which to network, learn and forge new partnerships. Against this backdrop of renewed optimism and energy, I look forward to meeting our attendees in-person at ATF next year.”
Justin Ang, Assistant Chief Executive for Media, Innovation, Communications & Marketing, IMDA, said, “The Singapore Media Festival, of which ATF is an important part, has once again proven to be Asia’s most important deal-making platform, and one that contributes greatly to the Singapore media industry’s vibrancy and growth. The creative journey to bring to life the fruitful conversations and connections made at this year’s SMF has just begun. I look forward to the exciting outcomes of these connections at a future SMF!”
Held as part of the Singapore Media Festival, the next edition of ATF and ScreenSingapore will return from 7th – 9th December 2022.
About Asia TV Forum & Market (ATF) 2021
1 – 3 December 2021
Into its 22nd edition, Asia TV Forum & Market (ATF) – the region’s leading entertainment content market and conference – is the proven industry platform to acquire knowledge, network, buy, sell, finance, distribute and co-produce across all platforms. It is the premier stage in Asia to engage with the entertainment industry’s top players from around the world. It’s where the best minds meet, and the future of Asia’s content is shaped. For more information, please visit www.asiatvforum.com
About ScreenSingapore 2021
1 – 3 December 2021
ScreenSingapore – Southeast Asia’s definitive marketplace for filmmakers, producers, distributors, financiers, and film buyers to explore co-production opportunities, seek financing, make deals and learn about the changing film landscape. In 2021, ScreenSingapore will host the SEAScreen Project Market and Conference, in partnership with the Southeast Asian Audio-Visual Association (SAAVA) and Ties That Bind: Asia/Europe Producers Workshop (TTB) to connect promising filmmakers and producers from Southeast Asia and Europe with international co-producing partners, festival programmers, distributors, commissioners, and financiers. For more information, please visit www.screensingapore.com.sg.
About RX Global
RX is in the business of building businesses for individuals, communities and organisations. We elevate the power of face-to-face events by combining data and digital products to help customers learn about markets, source products and complete transactions at over 400 events in 22 countries across 43 industry sectors. RX is passionate about making a positive impact on society and is fully committed to creating an inclusive work environment for all our people. RX is part of RELX, a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers. www.rxglobal.com
About the Singapore Media Festival (SMF)
The Singapore Media Festival, hosted by the Infocomm Media Development Authority, is one of Asia’s leading international media events, where the industry meets to discover the latest trends, talents and content in Asia. Taking place from 25 November to 5 December 2021, the Singapore Media Festival brings together the Asia TV Forum & Market and ScreenSingapore (ATF|SS), Singapore International Film Festival (SGIFF), VidCon Asia Summit and Singapore Comic Con (SGCC) 2021. For more information, please visit www.imda.gov.sg/sgmediafest.