Celebrity Dancing shows attract millions of viewers. ITV plans to launch a new celebrity dancing reality show to rival its competitors and get a piece of the action. It’s all about providing great entertainment, and focusing reality shows around celebrities is a sure-bet winner.
While they are celebrating this weekend for the ratings victory of their reality format over their rivals at the BBC (with Saturday’s run of Britain’s Got Talent getting more viewers than The Voice UK), the UK’s leading commercial terrestrial broadcaster ITV are not resting on their laurels, after commissioning a new series that will be a direct competition with the public broadcaster in more ways than one.
New series Shall We Dance? is scheduled for a launch in August in a weekly Saturday 7pm slot (presumably as a lead-in for popular singing contest The X Factor, which starts at a similar date), and is not only seen as a timeslot challenger to the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing (which is expected to air in September), but also a direct imitation of the format, having already performed a similar feat with the launch of figure skating competition Dancing on Ice in 2006.
The concept, said to have been greenlighted as a ‘big-budget series’ last Thursday (11 April), will hire a number of ‘well-known choreographers’ to work behind-the-scenes, but the focus will be on the six celebrities that are competing as pairs with their partners, running for six weeks and offering a wide range of themed dancing weeks, as opposed to Strictly Come Dancing‘s more limited ‘ballroom’ genre. An ITV source stated of that feature, and its relevance to a general audience: “Strictly can be a bit old-fashioned. We’ll have Bollywood one week and street dancing the next. It’ll be much more fun.”
A source of the deal previously said to the Daily Star Sunday of the proposed show overall: “ITV has seen Strictly pull in massive ratings for ten years and they want to get in on the action. It’s a pretty ruthless move to launch a dance show at the same time of year. The BBC won’t like this at all – it could spell the end for their flagship show. Strictly has regularly aired at the same time as X Factor in the past. But this year the BBC will have to compete with another dance show. This is bound to ruffle a few feathers.”
ITV plans a new celebrity dancing show — to compete in the same time slot as BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing. Will you watch? It will be interesting to see what they add to the celebrity dancing show paradigm.