vai al contenuto della pagina vai al menu di navigazione



Organized by
Luca Barra and Paola Brembilla

in collaboration with Andrea Esser, the Media Across Borders network
and the ECREA Television Studies section



Venue: Salone Marescotti
Date: 23-24/05/2017

live streaming

Free entrance


Media Mutations, the international conference on audiovisual media, comes to its ninth edition. This year’s theme is the cultural and industrial role of global formats in television production, distribution and viewing practices.

In the last fifteen years, following a long history that already started in the early years of the medium, television around the world has been constantly and successfully broadcasting global formats. Beginning with Big Brother, Survivor and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, and later with The X FactorMasterchefPeking ExpressIn Treatment, The BridgePulseras Rojas and many others, formatted shows have contributed to the creation of a shared television aesthetics, spreading best practices in production, distribution and marketing, and increasing genre proximity across the world. At the same time, differences and national specificities are still at work, and the success of global formats in individual national markets depends on their successful localization. The process of formatization is now used in both TV fiction and entertainment production, and it is relentlessly expanding, both at the economic and cultural level, and in a convergent media scenario.

The conference aims to expand academic knowledge on this phenomenon, establish new research perspectives in the field, and strengthen our understanding of national and transnational distribution and reception practices. The focus will be on cultural and linguistic format issues, on legal, economic and productive aspects of format development and format trade, and on the different genres and types of formatted audiovisual products.




Tuesday, May 23

Saluti istituzionali
Giuseppina La Face, direttrice, Dipartimento delle Arti, Università di Bologna
Greetings and Introduction

Luca Barra and Paola Brembilla, Università di Bologna

10:00 Industry. Format Production and Distribution
Chair: Ed Vollans, Middlesex University

The Transnational TV Production Industry. A System of Connections and Exchanges
Jolien Van Keulen, Vrije University, Brussels
The U.S. Market for Television Formats. Repurposed Content and Industry Lifecycles

Paul Torre, University of Northern Iowa
Circulatory Histories of Canadian Television Networks in 1990s Latin America

Ira Wagman, Carleton University, Ottawa
’s Global TV Creators. Industrial and Professional Narratives in a Format-Driven Industry
Leora Hadas, University of Nottingham

11:45 Unscripted/01. Formatting Talent Shows
Chair: Riccardo Fassone, Università di Torino

A Well-Oiled machine. Investigating the Italian Street Food Format Unti e Bisunti
Marta Perrotta, Università Roma Tre
Levels of Production in Transnational Television Formats. The Global, Local and Hyper-Local Levels of Making
Indian Idol
Lauhona Ganguly, The New School, New York     
Art is a Format. The Challenging Story of an (Italian) Talent Show

Daniela Cardini, Università IULM, Milano

13:00 Lunch Break

14:30 Keynote Address
Beyond Television. Theorizing the Format in Cultural History
Jérôme Bourdon, Tel Aviv University
Chair and discussant: Peppino Ortoleva, Università di Torino

15:30 Scripted/01. Emerging Markets
Chair: Roberta Pearson, University of Nottingham

Bron/Broen, the Pilot Episode as Space between Cultures, and (Re)Negotiations of Nordic Noir
Tobias Steiner, Universität Hamburg
“Original Good, Adaptation Bad”. Investigating the Deeper Reasons behind Australian Audience Preference for the Nordic Versions of Forbrydelsen and Bron/Broen
Pia Majbritt Jensen, Aarhus University
Crossing the Western Borders. The End as the Beginning of New Television Flows?

Şebnem Baran, University of Southern California 
Is There a Community in
Umutsuz Ev Kadınları? The Reception of the Turkish Version of Desperate Housewives
Deniz Berfin Ayaydin, Vrije University, Brussels


Wednesday, May 24

9:30 Industry Spotlight (in Italian)
Chair: Guglielmo Pescatore, Università di Bologna

Distratta Italia. Perché importiamo i format e non li esportiamo
Massimo Scaglioni, Centro di Ricerca sulla Televisione e gli Audiovisivi, Università Cattolica
’erba del vicino… Il format e la gestione del rischio
Federico Di Chio, Mediaset/RTI

10:45 Keynote Address
Here to Entertain Us. How TV Formats Changed Television
Jean K. Chalaby, City, University of London
Chair and discussant: Enrico Menduni, Università Roma Tre

11:45 Unscripted/02. Representation and Identity in Formats
Chair: Giovanni Boccia Artieri, Università di Urbino “Carlo Bo”

An Italian Franchise in Search of a Format. Creative, Productive and Representational Strategies in Real Time’s Italiani Made
Cecilia Penati and Anna Sfardini, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Milano   
Your Andalusian Face Sounds Familiar. The Persistence of Regional Stereotypes in Original and Adapted TV Formats in Spain

Juan Francisco Gutierrez Lozano, University of Málaga
Poverty as Television Spectacle. Shaming Low-Income People in Reality TV Programs

Irena Reifova, Charles University, Prague

13:00 Lunch Break

14:30 Scripted/02. Between Standardization and Creativity
Chair: Jolien Van Keulen, Vrije University, Brussels

The Curious Adventure of the Failed Format. Sherlock and Elementary
Roberta Pearson, University of Nottingham
“The Way Forward”. Quebec’s New Narrative-Based Formats and the Search for a Global Audience
Stefany Boisvert, McGill University, Montreal
Excavating TV Formats. Using Multimodal Digital Tools for Comparatively Analyzing Adaptations of the Quebec Sketch Comedy Series
Un Gars, Une Fille
Edward Larkey, University of Maryland, Baltimore County

15:45 Audiences. Transmedia Formats
Chair: Stephanie Janes, Royal Holloway, University of London

Winxology. Grooming the Future Female Consumer
Ellen Nerenberg, Wesleyan University and Nicoletta Marini Maio, Dickinson College         
What Are We Talking About When We Talk About Food? The Evolution of Foodie Genre Storytelling

Alfonso Amendola and Novella Troianello, Università di Salerno
One World for All. Audiences, Exhibitors and United Worldbuilding

Bärbel Göbel-Stolz, Karlshochschule, Karlsruhe

17:00 Final Remarks
Andrea Esser, University of Roehampton



Logistics and Communication
tel. 051 18899687