(by Janet Balmforth, DRG News)
Leading independent distributor DRG has acquired the rights to the new ground-breaking and emotionally charged, social transformation format Million Dollar Neighbourhood and has sold the rights to a leading US cable network.
The agreement comes on the heels of the announcement of DRG’s first-look agreement with Million Dollar Neighbourhood’s producer, award-winning Canadian company Force Four Entertainment, producers of the property programme Urban Suburban, which DRG also distributes. DRG will launch both the finished programme along with the format as one of the highlights of the distributor’s MIPTV 2012 line-up.
The programme enjoyed a highly successful series debut in January 2012 in Canada securing a series 2 renewal after only five episodes and DRG has successfully sold the rights to the 10 x 60 min first series to OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network in the U.S.
Million Dollar Neighbourhood features 100 Families over 10 Weeks trying to make $1 Million by working together. In the face of crushing debt and a challenging economic landscape, one community attempts to address their financial problems and raise their collective net worth by a staggering 1 million dollars in this unprecedented social experiment. Guided by a financial expert and a clinical psychologist, the neighbourhood strives to reach their target each week in a series of epic financial challenges. They will need to dig deep, downsize, earn, barter, share, swap, scrimp, save and collaborate with their neighbours in ways they never could have imagined. If they succeed, the financial lessons they’ve learned – along with a chance at a weekly prize of $10,000 and a grand prize of $100,000 – will change their lives forever.
Diane Rankin, SVP Acquistions at DRG says: “Million Dollar Neighbourhood is the perfect programme at the perfect time – this is a financial format that takes viewers on an amazing emotional journey and it successfully hits the co-viewing sweet spot for broadcasters as the theme is so universal and both men and women can identify with it. We’re thrilled to be launching this programme with Force Four at MIPTV.”