SBS will explore the refugee crisis over three nights in real time in Go Back Live, the latest iteration of Go Back to Where You Came From.
The broadcaster’s factual slate of 29 new shows for 2018, spanning documentaries, food, entertainment, news and current affairs, includes Is Australia Sexist?, Marry Me, Marry My Family, Muslims Like Us and a second season of Filthy Rich and Homeless.
SBS also announced that it and Vice will develop locally produced programs to screen on SBS Viceland Australia and Viceland’s 50-plus global channels, but did not provide any details.
At the upfronts launch in Sydney SBS MD Michael Ebeid; said: “SBS is delivering its strongest year yet, with differentiated programs and services that set it apart in an increasingly homogenous and competitive media market.
“Through a defined strategic direction, an innovative approach to scheduling and acceleration of our digital services, and as our nation becomes more culturally complex, we’re proud that SBS is engaging more Australians with our important programming across more platforms than ever before.”
Director of TV and online content Marshall Heald said: “At SBS we want to play a constructive role in helping Australians understand who we are. We want to encourage Australians to seek out different perspectives, to feel a sense of connection, belonging and empowerment. We want to tell stories that make people think, stories that make people feel, stories that challenge us, stories that inspire us.”
Homecoming Queens the first scripted commission for SBS On Demand, is a semi-autobiographical ‘sad-com’ from Michelle Law and Chloë Reeson. Law and Liv Hewson play best friends who have to reinvent their lives after suffering chronic illnesses. The online series from Generator Pictures will screen as a 60 minute special and as 7 x 8 minute episodes.
CJZ’s Go Back Live is touted as one of the most ambitious live television events in Australian broadcasting history, which will dig deeper into the asylum seeker and refugee debate with a sense of urgency.
Following on from Is Australia Racist?, Joined Up Films’ Is Australia Sexist? will explore an issue that is dominating global headlines at a time when Australia ranks 46th on the Global Gender Gap Index, down 10 places in the last year.
Also from CJZ, Muslims Like Us will follow 10 Australian Muslims with contrasting world views as they move into a house for eight days, resulting in passionate debates, honest disagreements, humour and insights into what it is like to be an Australian Muslim today.
CJZ’s Marry Me, Marry My Family will look at diverse sets of couples as they try to bridge the gap between their cultures and balance their families’ expectations with their own dreams.
Blackfella Films’ Filthy Rich and Homeless will be set in a new city, yet to be revealed, and promises to raise the bar higher by tackling the policies and potential solutions to a crisis that shows little sign of improving.
Who Do You Think You Are? will reveal the fascinating pasts of subjects such as Charlie Teo, Natalie Imbruglia, John Jarratt and Ernie Dingo, produced by Warner Bros. International Television Production Australia.
Genepool’s documentary Vitamania will explore the science and history of the $100 billion a year supplements industry.
Mint Pictures’ The Ghan is an immersive three hour event that invites viewers on a real time journey on the iconic train ride from Adelaide to Darwin.
The Untold Australia series continues in 2018, highlighting often unheard multicultural stories from rural rabbis to Lebanese beauty pageants. It includes Periscope Pictures’ Mirrabooka; IKandy Films’ Miss Lebanon; Unicorn Films’ RARA Rabbis; and Chemical Media’s The Cocos Question.
The food slate includes Destination Flavour China, in which Adam Liaw explores the ancient and diverse culinary traditions of China; Shane Delia’s Recipe for Life from Essential Media and Entertainment; and Kismet Productions’ Food Safari Water hosted by Maeve O’Meara.
Peter Kuruvita will look at some of Western Australia’s most popular food destinations in season two of Peter Kuruvita’s Coastal Kitchen, produced by The Precinct; master chef Sarah Todd returns to India for season 2 of My Restaurant in India, produced by h.squared; and Luke Nguyen’s Food Trail from Creative Media will chronicle how a young refugee became one of Australia’s most successful chefs and restaurateurs.
The international line-up includes Knightfall, an A+E Studios’ drama commissioned by the US History channel, which follows the Knights Templar, the elite warriors of the Crusades; Mars, a six-part series produced by National Geographic which envisions the first manned mission to Mars in 2033; and the second seasons of The Handmaid’s Tale, which will be fast tracked from the US on SBS and SBS On Demand, and legal drama The Good Fight.