21 - 24 JUNE 2021 / EDITION N°32


Sunny Side of the Doc

Sunny Side Welcomes Ushuaïa TV & Histoire as Silver Partners

Ushuaïa TV & Histoire, Silver partners of Sunny Side of the Doc 2019

A wholly-owned subsidiary of the TF1 Group, the thematic channels Ushuaïa TV and Histoire offer a wide range of documentaries, magazines, films and fiction on their respective themes: Ushuaïa TV is the only discovery channel that places the protection of the planet at the heart of its programmes and Histoire is the generalist channel on history. A rich and varied offer based on an ambitious and dynamic acquisition and production policy.

Ushuaïa TV and Histoire are proud to be associated with the 30th anniversary of Sunny Side of the Doc as Silver Partners. It is the perfect opportunity to present their ambitions and developments to French and international partners.


3 questions for Christophe Sommet, CEO of TF1 Thématiques


Stand up for Science! What is your policy in terms of pre-purchases and co-productions for Science and Nature documentaries?

Science and nature documentaries are essential genres in the editorial line of Ushuaïa TV. Exploring, marvelling and respecting are the driving forces behind the tv channel, which is the only one to be committed and has been placing the protection of the planet at the heart of its investment choices for almost 15 years.

The chain has been pursuing an ambitious production policy based on science for several years. In 2016, it launched the French-Canadian series Sur les routes de la science (10 x 52′ with MDAM, 4K) with science journalists Marie-Pier Elie and Emilie Martin. Each year, the channel invests 150 hours of documentary and magazine productions, in which science and nature play a key role.

A promise of discovery, science is present when it comes to alerting and acting on major environmental issues (Thermostat planétaire; 52′ with Les Films en Vrac), exploring the splendours of nature (Le labyrinthe secret de Namoroka; 2×52′ with Kwanza), understanding the past (La Terre des Géants ; 4 x 52′ with French Connection Films), accompany the major scientific exploration missions (Polar Quest; 52′ with Flair Production, Under the pole; 52′ collection with Zed) and celebrate their emblematic figures (Haroun Tazieff, le poète du feu; 52′ with Ekla Production, Paul-Emile Victor, j’ai horreur du froid; 52′ with Ekla Production).

All these programs have the same goal: to popularize science in order to reveal the great spectacle of nature, always in an informative and entertaining way. Like the series Curieuse de nature with biologist Myriam Baran, which is also aimed at a young audience.

In addition, Ushuaïa TV has been involved for three years in Pariscience – a partner of the Sunny Side of the Doc – to enable a young director to produce his first scientific film thanks to a €25,000 grant. The 2018 winner, Guillaume Lenel, has been selected at the SSD Talent Hub this year to present our Astéroïdes, le nouvel eldorado spatial (co-produced with Nomades TV), which will be broadcast next autumn. It is a source of pride for us.


New narrative experiences are undoubtedly a major challenge in attracting a younger audience to documentary subjects. Tell us about the innovative ambitions and immersive content you will be presenting in PiXii Festival this year.

The Ushuaïa TV and Histoire channels are innovating and offer in the MyTF1 VR application a rich offer of content that allows the public to immerse themselves and extend the experience of certain linear content. This is the case in particular for the modules La Terre des Géants (with French Connection Films and Chuck Production), 700 requins dans la nuit (with Le Cinquième Rêve and Les Gens Biens Production) or Egypte, les temples sauvés du Nil (with Sequana Media). In 2017, Ushuaïa TV also launched the first weekly 360° VR version of a TV show with Bougez Vert VR.

But the channels also offer independent content such as L’homme derrière Notre-Dame de Paris and V2, L’arme secrète d’Hitler (with Targo). Since September 2018, Ushuaïa TV has also been positioning itself in the podcast market with the weekly meeting Les aventuriers de l’environnement. At the end of the year, Histoire will also offer a series of podcasts on the C’est un complot collection! (with ADLTV).

These initiatives meet today’s expectations and, beyond the image effect, make it possible to attract an audience that is complementary to the linear audience.


30 years of Sunny Side of the Doc is something to celebrate! What message would you like to send to the documentary planet that will gather in La Rochelle from June 24 to 27?

We are particularly pleased to be present this symbolic year for this market. Sunny Side of the Doc is the documentary world’s must-attend event to meet all its major international players, all in a friendly atmosphere.

We are constantly looking for original, clever and relevant documentaries that allow us to distinguish ourselves in the audiovisual landscape. Meeting producers and distributors from different countries is therefore essential and Sunny Side is the ideal place to do so.


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