Format Doctor reboots at CPH Festival 2018



CPH logo 2018.png‘Reboot’ is the buzzword for dusting off old hit shows and remaking them, the cyber-reference somehow implying that they have been reinvented for the Millennial generation

The US, UK and many other countries are awash with Reboots, as broadcasters attempt to ‘de-risk’ output by attempting to recapture the old magic – and ratings – of former favourites.

From scripted to gameshows, reality to talk, no genre is safe from the Reboot phenomenon.

But does this tactic work? Format Doctor Justin Scroggie will argue that many Reboots find themselves reborn into a scarcely recognizable world for which they are unprepared.

Tech has changed the viewer/screen relationship, which is shorter and longer, more demanding and more emotional. By contrast, the latest onscreen talent may be too ironic, too self-referential to host an old format. Contestants are more central to the action, more savvy about production, more interested in building their own brand, whilst viewers have become consumers who prefer crowd-sourcing opinion to deferring to professionals. The production methods and facilities that once supported old shows are often no longer available.

In this session, Justin applies his trademark forensic style to identify what has changed, how as a creator, producer or broadcaster you need to respond to these changes (whether your show is a Reboot or not), and ultimately asks whether Reboots are the answer – or the problem.

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