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Critical Content ties with ITVS France, Be-Entertainment in formats pact 

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From left to right, Jenny Daly, Gepke Nederlof and Thierry Lachkar

US production company Critical Content is looking to expand the international reach of its catalogue of formats through a new global strategic initiative.

The SK Global-backed company has signed a first-look production deal with ITV Studios France and a first-look distribution agreement with Belgian distributor Be-Entertainment.

Through those deals, the European companies will “funnel fresh and engaging television formats to their local markets and beyond,” said the Jenny Daly-led US company.

Stéfanie Gelinas, who joined Critical Content at the end of 2023 as exec VP of global formats and development, will help oversee the slates and look to strike similar deals with other global players.

Critical Content’s roster of formats includes Catfish, Great Food Truck Race, Celebrity Game Face and new titles such as Instant Dream Home and Reese Witherspoon’s Get Organized with the Home Edit.

ITV Studios France produces local versions of formats including The Voice, Destination X, Cosmic Love and Notre Histoire de France, while Be-Entertainment’s slate of formats includes Destination X, Musical of Your Life, The Way Out and Finder$ Keeper$.

Daly, who serves as president of Critical Content, said the partnerships “reflect [its] goals of expanding our format footprint beyond US sales.”
ITV Studios France CEO Thierry Lachkar added that the companies “share the same excitement around great content and believe their creative ambition will satisfy the constant need for innovation in the French market.”

Be-Entertainment MD Gepke Nederlof said that the partnership is part of its own initiative to expand its formats business. “The partnership with Critical Content marks the first announcement of a collaboration within our newly created Creative Collective,” she said.

“In the current competitive landscape with big groups growing bigger and bigger, it is getting more important to attract high-quality content to our catalogue. Bringing together strong creative format ideas from Critical Content to our Belgian channels before launching them to the international market is a win-win for all of us, and we could not be more excited to team up with such an amazing team to do so.”

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