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SBS adds French Open, five new dramas and renews The Handmaid’s Tale for 2018

SBS today revealed its slate of new programs for 2018, including the French Open, documentaries including Is Australia Sexist? and Muslims Like Us along with five new Australian-commissioned dramas.

Muslims Like Us

Vice and SBS also announced today they would be providing locally produced programs for SBS Viceland in 2018, which will also air across Viceland’s global channels.

SBS managing director Michael Ebeid said: “SBS is delivering its strongest year yet, with differentiated programs and services that set it apart in an increasingly homogenous and competitive media market.

“Through a defined strategic direction, an innovative approach to scheduling and acceleration of our digital services, and as our nation becomes more culturally complex, we’re proud that SBS is engaging more Australians with our important programming across more platforms than ever before.”

Ebeid: ‘SBS is delivering its strongest year yet’

The new slate of shows continues to prove SBS is not afraid to tackle the big issues, with programs such as Go Back to Where You Came From diving deep into the refugee crisis.

Director of TV and online content Marshall Heald said SBS wants to play a constructive role in helping Australians understand who we are.

“We want to encourage Australians to seek out different perspectives, to feel a sense of connection, belonging and empowerment. We want to tell stories that make people think, stories that make people feel, stories that challenge us, stories that inspire us,” he said.

“For more than 40 years, promoting diversity has been at the heart of SBS. We want to tell stories with underlying thematics that help Australians understand that this country’s greatest asset is the diversity of our people. Our differences make us strong.”


Australian-commissioned dramas

The public broadcaster has announced five new Australian-commissioned dramas including Safe Harbour, a psychological thriller filmed and set in Brisbane, while crime drama Dead Lucky will reveal the complexities and tensions in cross-cultural relationships.

SBS On Demand has commissioned its first local program, Homecoming Queens, a semi-autobiographical ‘sad-com’ from an all-female creative team following twenty-something best friends as they reinvent themselves after chronic illnesses.

NITV’s will be taking its first steps into scripted drama with Grace Beside Me, a children’s series adapted from the award-winning novel by Sue McPherson.

Grace Beside Me on NITV

Benjamin Law’s coming-of-age series The Family Law will also return for a third and final season.

Documentaries

Returning series include Filthy Rich and Homeless, which will be back for a second series in 2018, set in a new city and tackling the policies and potential solutions to the homelessness crisis.

A special live version of Go Back to Where You Came From – the documentary series covering the global refugee crisis – will present stories from the front line in real time over three nights.

Informed by the insight that Australia ranks 46th on the Global Gender Gap Index, Is Australia Sexist? will explore the reasons behind the fact that the country has slipped ten places in the last year alone.

In Muslims Like Us, a format originally broadcast by BBC in the UK, ten Australian Muslims with contrasting world views will move into a house together for eight days.

The much-anticipated second season of The Handmaid’s Tale will be fast tracked from the US on SBS and SBS On Demand.

A second season of The Handmaid’s Tale will be coming in 2018

Other US shows coming to the broadcaster include legal drama The Good Fight, along with Knightfall, an epic exploration of the world of the Knights Templar.

Who Do You Think You Are? will also return, this time digging into the pasts of Charlie Teo, Natalie Imbruglia, John Jarratt and Ernie Dingo. Other titles include Marry Me, Marry My Family, and the return of Untold Australia.

Marry Me, Marry My Family

Food shows for 2018 include Destination Flavour, which will head to China, along with Food Safari Water, and the second season of My Restaurant in India.

The story of how a young refugee became one of Australia’s most successful chefs will be revealed in Luke Nguyen’s Food Trail, and Shane Delia’s Recipe for Life will provide New Year’s resolutions solutions in early 2018.

Sport

After adding tennis to its slate in 2017, the French Open will hit screens in 2018 along with the finals of the US Open.

The Tour De France and the refreshed National Basketball League will also return.

Close to 400 hours of football will be broadcast in 2018, including coverage of the FIFA World Cup, the English Premier League, UEFA Champions League and W-League.

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