BBC Worldwide today announced that it has commissioned The Great South African Bake Off for BBC Lifestyle in South Africa. The series, which will search for South Africa’s finest bakers, will be produced by local production company Rapid Blue and will air in late 2015 as part of BBC Worldwide’s ongoing commitment to provide high quality local programming.
Applications to become a contestant on the show are now open nationwide and information on how to apply can be found at www.bbcsouthafrica.com. The application process will close on Sunday 24 May and shooting for the 10-part series will take place in Johannesburg.
Joel Churcher, Vice President and General Manager Africa, BBC Worldwide said: “Building on the success of SAFTA award-winning Come Dine With Me South Africa, The Great South African Bake Off promises to be event television at its best, serving up passion, skill and mouth-watering excitement. I look forward to working with Rapid Blue to create this exciting new local commission for South African audiences.”
Kully Kaur Bains, Head of Programming Africa, BBC Worldwide commented: “Baking is currently one of the hottest global cooking trends, and the fact that Bake Off has an outdoor and sunny style makes it the perfect fit for South Africa, home to local treats such as malva pudding, milk tart and Koeksisters. I can’t wait to see what delicious goodies local bakers dream up.”
Duncan Cooper, BBC Worldwide’s Executive Producer for Formats and Local Production, will oversee the commission. He added: “It’s exciting to see Bake Off spreading its wings and doing so well around the world. I’m sure it will lend itself extremely well to South Africa’s vibrant and exciting mix of culinary influences. I can’t wait to see (and sample) the no-doubt colourful and mouth-watering range of bakes.”
BBC Worldwide has now licensed the Love Productions format to 17 countries including France (M6), Australia (Nine Network), Italy (Discovery), Poland (TLC), Belgium (VTM), Ireland (TV3), Denmark (DR), Norway (TV3), Sweden (TV7/Sjuan), The Netherlands (MAX), Finland (MTV3), Ukraine (1+1) and Germany (ProSiebenSat.1).
Love Productions has also licensed the format to CBS in the US with Paul Hollywood on the judging panel, resulting in 18 international commissions of the BBC One hit show worldwide.
The Great South African Bake Off builds on the success of the popular BBC series The Great British Bake Off, and will see amateur bakers compete to be named South Africa’s best home baker. The executive producer for the series will be Julie Swanston, VP of Commissioning at BBC Worldwide.
The award-winning Great British Bake Off, now in its fifth season, premieres on BBC Lifestyle on April 21st. The programme’s compelling mix of dreams and passion, competition and drama has made it a huge hit with South African viewers; BBC Lifestyle’s audience more than doubled for its series 4 premieres. In the UK, series 5 drew its highest ever ratings with more than 13 million viewers tuning in for the final episode.