Rapid TV News - Asian OTT video service Viu sets sights on Original productions
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PCCW's pan-Asian over the top (OTT) video service Viu is on course to develop 70 original titles this year for its 16 million monthly active users, according to a company executive.

Janice LeeMDPCCWViu Original 26April2018

Speaking at the APOS conference in Indonesia, PCCW Media's managing director Janice Lee said the locally produced content will amount to over 900 episodes by the end of 2018 - in Indian, Chinese, Indonesian and Arabic languages.

"With the evolution of OTT streaming service and consumers' adoption, quality content with strong relevance is key to our continued high engagement with viewers. Viu aims to introduce refreshing local production in various markets, including Spotlight 2 produced by Bollywood director Vikram Bhatt, and Kenapa Harus Bule? by award-winning Indonesian director Andri Cune," said PCCW Media Group MD Janice Lee (pictured, right).

"Our latest Viu Original series development of The Bridge is a remake of a popular international TV series with Asia context and filmed in Singapore and Malaysia. By working with top tier local talent and production houses, we fulfill our brand promise to provide Viu-ers with compelling localised entertainment."

Viu is a 'freemium' model video-on-demand (VOD) service, providing free, advertising supported content for all viewers as well as enhanced features to premium subscribers.

As well as working with established directors, in Indonesia Viu has 'crowd sourced' Viu Original ideas in an event called Viu Pitching Forum. Here young filmmakers are encouraged to pitch their ideas before a team of experts, including producers, directors and scriptwriters. Viu will fund shortlisted ideas and collaborate with professional filmmakers to produce them for airing.

In its home base of Hong Kong, Viu said it enlists local YouTubers and KOLs to join the production team, and develop engaging content for millennial audiences.

"We are encouraged by the overwhelming positive response from viewers for Viu Original and we will continue to create many more fresh and engaging originals tailored to our millennial Viu-ers. We are especially proud to provide a platform for young talent in local markets to showcase their creativity and gain popularity among our viewers," added Lee.

Viu Original has also recently launched full feature movies High Jack, co-produced with Phantom Films in India, and Indonesian satirical comedy Kenapa Harus Bule?. Both films will air in cinemas as well as being streamed on Viu.

Further extending its Original reach, Viu has also collaborated with Sun Network's pay-TV channel Zoom TV and Gemini TV, a Bollywood pay-TV channel, to deliver its original content to free TV and pay-TV audiences in India. It is a scheme Viu is keen to explore further, the company said.