In May as part of ABC’s internal restructure the Children’s department, headed up by Libbie Doherty (pictured), expanded to become Children’s and Family.
Speaking last week at the Australian Children’s Content Summit, she expanded on what kind of content was being sought and what Family might entail.
“We are absolutely still commissioning for ABC ME, our heartland scripted comedy, like Spooky Files for those of you that were here in the room earlier today… Little Lunch, that sort of genre of television, absolutely. Animation is also still very much core for that audience. So we’re always looking for fantastic properties in that area,” she said.
“Family, is the wonderful new string to our bow in the Children’s team. It’s still early days in working through exactly what that strategy is, but certainly for us it will be something to do with families, around 8 to 15 year olds primarily…. probably something to do with Family. I know that sounds deadly obvious, but that’s probably something to think about.
“So we do really want those ideas where we feel that a parent and a child are actively going to sit down and watch something together. So that’s the lens that we’re through at the moment. Obviously Scripted is going to be something in that space, possibly some sort of Factual formats are also something we’re looking at.
“But we will certainly come back to the industry with a better briefing once we know a little bit more.”
But ABC is not about to expand into Young Adult content.
Jennifer Collins, Head of Screen, told TV Tonight, “ABC Childrens and Family doesn’t play in the YA space. That’s an incredibly difficult audience to capture and isn’t in our current planning.
“Our focus remains on premium preschool and primary age audiences. We would love to engage family audiences where there are co-viewing opportunities.”