Report: British Series Gaining More Ground Abroad


While American series do continue to dominate on international schedules, a new report finds that European productions, especially British ones, are increasing their share.

Eurodata’s 2017 Scripted Series report highlights a rise in originals. In 2017, there were even more new programs: three series out of ten are original series; 70 percent of series are broadcast on the leading channels. The report also finds that series are made up of episodes with longer running times but there are fewer of them.

Last year, more than half of the series proposed during prime time on the main channels studied in the report were local series. More than nine times out of ten, the top series in each of the countries studied is a local series. They are particularly popular in Denmark, Italy and Israel. However, these local creations decreased slightly last year both in terms of the hourly program volume broadcast and their audience. The decrease was from more series co-productions: 10 percent of the top series in 2017 were co-productions—4 points more than a year earlier.

Besides local originals and co-productions, imported international series still represent a major share of the series broadcast and watched around the world. Where these shows come from, though, is changing. The share of British productions in the volume of imported series broadcast during prime time increased by 3 points in one year, reaching 11 percent. U.K.-originated shows enjoyed much success in 2017, especially in Scandinavia.

“The success of series has led to increasingly strong competition between content creators,” said Abed Laraqui, research and clientele manager with Eurodata TV Worldwide. “TV viewers demand new programs, new content and originality. There has never been so many new creations among the highest international audiences as in 2017.”