NHK looks for international audiences

Early September saw me invited to Tokyo to be an adviser to Japanese broadcaster NHK at their pitching event. The aim of the event was to encourage their producers to develop and produce for international as well as Japanese audiences. And to do that they needed to test them on some outsiders. Which is where I, Patrick Hoerl, Ann Julienne, and Tony Chow came in. A day of prep,  a day of pitches, and a day of followup. Well organised, and taken extremely seriously by NHK management in a large conference room on the 22nd floor. It was a good opportunity to see what the Japanese audience generally got – and to try and help broaden those ideas for a public beyond Japan. Sayumi, Yuko, and Miwako at NHK work very hard to convince the programming department that they should develop for other audiences, and I suspect the discussions carried on for a few weeks after the pitch itself.



By Krishan Arora

I'm an experienced television executive and producer. I started out at the BBC in London, working as assistant producer and director on a variety of documentary and magazine programmes. I then went to France to be one of the first programmers at Arte in Strasbourg when the channel launched in 1992. Returning to London after three years in France, I became Producer and Head of Development for documentary company Antelope. There I produced docs for all British broadcasters, with many co-productions on international subjects including the award-winning feature documentary Srebrenica - A Cry from the Grave, produced for BBC, NPS, PBS, and WDR. After a year developing and producing through my own company Electrify, I rejoined the BBC in 2001 as Commissioning Executive in Factual, commissioning Science, History and Arts documentaries and series from independent producers for all four BBC channels. In 2005 I became the BBC’s Independents Executive, responsible for the BBC’s strategic relationship with the UK independent television production sector across all genres – factual, drama, comedy and entertainment. In mid-2011, I went back to the world of production and consulting, for clients including NHK, Steps International, the Sunny Side markets, French production company Gedeon, and now the Australian broadcaster SBS. Of Indian and German parentage, I'm based between Copenhagen and my native London.