Orange invests in TV programming

Orange and Endemol are teaming up to produce a network ITV series called Orange Playlist.

The Orange-funded series, which was ordered by the ITV night-time commissioning editor, Carol Groves, is a television take on the long-running Radio 4 programme Desert Island Discs.

The venture marks an attempt by ITV to step up its advertiser relationships in the funded-programming arena.

The Orange roster agency Cake advised the telecommunications company to invest in advertiser-funded programming, while Endemol's Initial subsidiary devised the concept for the show.

The show will air in a late-night slot from 23 September and is scheduled to run for six months. Each episode will feature an interview with a celebrity on five songs they have chosen in five predefined categories: the past, the present, the future, a dedication and the celebrity's all-time favourite track.

The relevant music videos will be played around their choices and the format will also include a run-down of the top fives in the singles, download and ringtones charts.

Sales of ringtones and music downloads now outstrip singles sales and will form a substantial revenue stream for Orange and ITV.

Endemol has also produced an Orange Playlist-branded website and WAP service to complement the show. Viewers will be able to access the full download, singles and ringtones charts and will also be able to download tracks featured in the series.

Initial has been working with Orange on a number of projects and format ideas. The production company experimented with music downloads on its Fame Academy series for BBC1.

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