Tag Archive: Banijay Benelux

  1. NL Film Shines Bright with Full Moon

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    Media and entertainment powerhouse, Banijay, today announces NL Film, a Banijay Benelux company, has struck a deal with Searchers and Prime Video, to distribute their latest feature film, Full Moon. The very first Dutch film to be filmed entirely in Thailand, it will be released in local cinemas in 2025, as well as Prime Video.

    Full Moon, directed by David Cocheret (De Slet van 6VWO, SpangaS) with screenplay written by  Brian De Vore (SpangaS, Misfit: The Series, Costa!! de serie), follows four friends in their thirties who travel to Thailand for a holiday filled with parties and adventure. When the body of a young woman washes up after a wild ‘Full Moon Party’, the four best friends wind up as the main suspects, and what should have been a carefree holiday quickly turns into a horrific nightmare. Directed by David Cocheret, the four main roles are played by Yannick Jozefzoon (Femi, Santos), Kay Greidanus (Net als in de film, Commando’s), Matthijs van de Sande Bakhuyzen (De Stamhouder, Billy the Kid) and Joep Paddenburg (Jippie No More!, Tegendraads).  

    Dennis Cornelisse, Managing Director and Producer of NL Film: “Full Moon is a remarkable project, having been entirely shot in Thailand with a Thai and Dutch crew under challenging circumstances. Moreover, the film combines various genres from bromance to action thriller, making it a broadly appealing and valuable addition to our portfolio and to Dutch cinema. With its universal theme, we hope to see this gripping thriller gain exposure beyond its Dutch borders and capture global audiences, whilst also demonstrating its great potential as a travelling format.”

    David Cocheret, director of Full Moon: “Filming for a full month in Thailand was an unforgettable experience that I wouldn’t have wanted to miss. Despite the differences between Dutch and Thai culture – such as the necessary blessing of the set by a monk for the Thai crew — we found a common language in the film. I am proud of the crew and look forward to the result.” 

    Full Moon is being produced by NL Film and hs been made possible by the Netherlands Film Production Incentive, Searchers, and Prime Video. The film is currently in post-production and is set to be released in Dutch cinemas in 2025. NL Film is part of Banijay’s broader line-up of over 60 scripted labels globally, with an impressive oeuvre of short and feature-length films, youth drama and television series. 

  2. Scenery Announces Formula 1 Docu-Series Max Verstappen – Off the Beaten Track

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    Media and entertainment powerhouse, Banijay, today announces Scenery, a joint venture with Banijay Benelux, will produce Max Verstappen – Off the Beaten Track for Viaplay. The series, a collaboration between Scenery, Viaplay and Verstappen, offers unique glimpses into the life of the three-time Formula 1 world champion, and comes off the success of last year’s acclaimed documentary, Max Verstappen- Anatomy of a Champion.

    Max Verstappen – Off the Beaten Track presents a unique opportunity for viewers to explore Verstappen’s passions beyond the F1 circuit, providing intimate insights into his character and race craft. Through three 30-minute episodes, director Nick Hoedeman unveils a hidden side of Verstappen not captured by other cameras ever before. Each episode highlights a different aspect of Verstappen’s passion beyond the F1 track, and in this more intimate setting, the series gains a deeper understanding of this global superstar and his love for racing.

    Max Verstappen: “This series shows a side that often remains unseen during the moments on the Formula 1 circuit. ‘Off the Beaten Track’ gives a glimpse of my life, my love for different forms of motorsport and the people who inspire me. I’m proud to collaborate with Viaplay in bringing this unique series to viewers.”

    Isidoor Roebers, Scenery Founder and Producer comments: “We reflect with immense pride on the remarkable journey of creating this series for Viaplay and Max Verstappen. Together with director Nick Hoedeman, our dedicated team crafted a truly distinctive series, filmed on location in Monaco, Las Vegas, Austria, Italy, and Amsterdam. Through this captivating documentary, it has been an honour to delve into the life of Max, a perspective that few have had the privilege to witness.”

    Peter Nørrelund, Viaplay Group EVP and Chief Sports & Business Development Officer says: “Our collaboration with Max Verstappen on Off the Beaten Track is a testament to our commitment to delivering exclusive and captivating content. In this series, we’ve opened the doors to a side of Max that goes beyond the fast-paced world of Formula 1. This isn’t just about racing; it’s about uncovering the essence of a global superstar. We are thrilled to offer viewers an intimate look into Max’s passions and pursuits outside the circuit, highlighting the depth of his character, and the fervour that fuels his success. We’re proud to present this unique and compelling series that adds another dimension to Max Verstappen”.

    The news follows Banijay’s recent launch of Banijay Sports, which signalled its ambitions to grow across sportainment, documentary and digital, via new partnerships, content investments and M&A.

  3. NL Film Announces New Senior Team

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    Banijay Benelux today confirms new senior team at NL Film with Dennis Cornelisse taking over as Managing Director and Wynand Chocolaad joining as Head of Productions, with both roles effective immediately.

    Cornelisse, who previously served as Producer at NL Film, is replacing Alex Doff, COO at Banijay Benelux. Having been the driving force behind many successful productions including The Golden Hour, Anoniem,Rundfunk, Neem me mee, Costa!! and De Regels van Floor, he will take over the strategic direction of NL Film and strengthen the portfolio of projects in development.

    Peter Lubbers, CEO at Banijay Benelux: “Dennis’ deep knowledge of the world of films and drama series combined with his experience, proven track record, and leadership, make him the perfect candidate to take on NL Film. I look forward to seeing the next phase of growth and creative ambition he will bring to the label.”

    Reinforcing the creative team, Chocolaad is joining as Head of Productions. Previously at Lemming Film, he brings a wealth of experience having spent 16 years at NL Film, where he built, and subsequently maintained strong ties with the creative team. In addition to supervising all productions, he will ensure departments are fully supported and maximised.

    Recent hits for the Amsterdam-based production company NL Film include Golden Hour (NPO), Modern Love(Amazon Prime Video), and feature film Costa.

  4. Scenery Partners with Sarah Jessica Parker and Banijay Rights on Front Row

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    Scenery, a joint venture with Banijay Benelux, today announces it is partnering with Sarah Jessica Parker’s Pretty Matches Productions on Front Row, a feature-length premium documentary following a group of talented Ukrainian ballet dancers, produced in collaboration with Banijay Rights. The Emmy-award winning producer and actress will serve, alongside The Ruderman Foundation, as Executive Producer with Scenery (Human Playground for Netflix) producing.

    Front Row is directed by Miriam Guttmann (multi-award-winning director of Seeds of Deceit) and is represented globally by Banijay Rights, the global distribution arm of media and entertainment powerhouse Banijay.

    In this extraordinary feature, Guttmann follows a group of Ukrainian dancers in exile, as they form a new ballet company, ‘United Ukrainian Ballet’. While performing Alexei Ratmanskiy’s version of ‘Giselle’ in Washington D.C., Alexis, one of the leading ballet dancers, befriends Oleksandr, a front-line soldier, who lost both his legs in battle on the Ukrainian border with Russia. A friendship forms and Oleksandr is welcomed into the rest of the ballet company. Subsequently joining the ballet company, he remains even more determined to dance with his disability.

    A tale of adversity, the devastation of war remains evident through video calls between the dancers and their families back home, contributing to a deep sense of survival guilt among the dancers, especially given Oleksandr’s condition. Through collaborative choreography and performances, the Front Row, and the front line, symbolically merge, emphasising the strength and resilience of everyone involved.

    Sarah Jessica Parker is an award-winning actor, producer, and businesswoman. Parker starred as Carrie Bradshaw on the HBO television series Sex and the City (1998-2004), a role she reprised on the HBO Max show And Just Like That which premiered in 2021. Parker served as an executive producer for both series. She recently starred on Broadway opposite her husband, Matthew Broderick, in the revival of one of the great American comedies, ‘Plaza Suite’, which will be showing at London’s Savoy Theatre for the very first time from Wednesday, January 17th through Sunday, March 31st.

    Parker also currently serves as a Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors for the New York City Ballet.

    Sarah Jessica Parker, Executive Producer, Pretty Matches Productions: “Front Row puts perseverance and the human condition on display against the punishing backdrop of war. Giving these dancers an international platform to tell their stories through the power, beauty and grit of ballet is a profound honor.” 

    Isidoor Roebers, Founder and Producer Scenery: Front Row is set to be a fascinating insight into the world of ballet, showcasing the unwavering determination and dedication of a group of dancers from Ukraine. Front Row is a nuanced and multi-layered piece, giving a sneak peek into an untapped world of dance and adversity. Sarah Jessica’s involvement in the project, thanks to our partnership with CAA, will undoubtedly add an enriching and inspiring dimension, making it an unmissable title for buyers around the globe.”

    Simon Cox, EVP Content & Acquisitions, Banijay Rights, said: “We were captivated to join Scenery in producing this incredible story from the outset and now with the equally passionate Sarah Jessica Parker on board, we are excited to present this feature documentary to the international market.”

    Front Row is made possible with the support of the Netherlands Film Production Incentive and Banijay Rights, which will globally distribute the title. Sarah Jessica Parker and Alison Benson executive produce for Pretty Matches Productions, with co-executive producer Claire Demere and associate producer Gaby Edwards. The film is supported by executive producers The Ruderman Foundation and Bart Meuter.

    The film is currently in postproduction and is expected to be complete in early 2024.

    The project joins Banijay’s prestigious slate of documentaries unveiled for MIPCOM 2023.

  5. Young People Embark on SimpelZodiak’s The Life Trail

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    Media and entertainment powerhouse, Banijay, today announces SimpelZodiak, part of Banijay Benelux, will produce adventure reality The Life Trail for Videoland. This eight-part series was developed by SimpelZodiak and RTL Creative Unit, together with Nasrdin Dchar, Walid Benmbarek, and Erik Wegewijs.

    Society is more complex than ever, and young people are among those struggling with their mental health, their self-esteem, and the question of how to approach challenges life throws their way. In The Life Trail, eight young people will embark on a life-changing adventure through Switzerland to improve their psychological wellbeing and overcome their greatest challenges. For some, that is depression and loneliness, whilst for others it could be  struggling with their gender identity. Well-known Dutch actors Nasrdin Dchar and Walid Benmbarek will also face the intense challenges and accompany the team as they head towards the finish line, guided by the inspiring Erik Wegewijs (SAS: Who Dares Wins), a former member of the Royal Netherlands Army’s elite special forces unit (KCT). At the end of the show each person that completes the trip will be able to open their bespoke prize, a gift designed to spark their dreams.

    Justine Huffmeijer, Managing Director at SimpelZodiak says: “This new format is authentic, emotional, and a real journey of self-discovery. The Life Trail is a balance between celebrity-led and relatable moving content, and we hope to empower audiences and those taking part. It has been great to work with RTL Creative Unit, Nasrdin Dchar, Walid Benmbarek and Erik Wegewijs to bring this format to life.”

    James Townley, Chief Content Officer, Development at Banijay adds: “Set amongst a breathtakingly cinematic background this new IP brings a fresh angle to adventure reality as it is intimate and addresses authentic mental health issues many young people face.  SimpelZodiak and RTL Creative Unit have beautifully captured this, and alongside motivational and engaging talent, have developed a format ripe for adaptations.”

    SimpelZodiak is a specialist in reality, adventure, crime and factual entertainment, with the aim of telling stories with impact, which leave viewers inspired and entertained. Amongst its slate is Good Luck Guys, Hunted, Survivor, SAS: Who Dares Wins and Your Home Made Perfect.

  6. Topkapi Films Announces New Management Team

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    Banijay Benelux today announces a new management team at Topkapi Films, with Sebastian Korteweg joining the high-end scripted production company on 1st September.

    Korteweg will become part of the management team alongside Laurette Schillings, Frans van Gestel and Arnold Heslenfeld. He will assume business responsibilities, with a specific remit to connect the storymakers who craft compelling content with the business teams who are geared towards ensuring the company’s series and films effectively reach the right audience. Korteweg will eventually succeed Heslenfeld who is retiring in 2024.

    Laurette Schillings, Partner and Producer at Topkapi Films says: “Sebastian’s experience and knowledge is very complementary to Topkapi. His experience is second to none, having honed skills at high-profile institutions. His background demonstrates he has a similar mindset to us here, and we are extremely pleased with his arrival. We would also like to thank Arnold for his dedicated years at Topkapi and wish him all the best for a well-deserved retirement. “

     

    Sebastian Korteweg says: “In this new role as Producer at Topkapi, I’ll be able to fulfil my long-held aspiration to work on ground-breaking drama series and films for a diverse and international audience. I’m very much looking forward to working together with an enormously talented and experienced team of professionals.”

    Korteweg has held numerous senior positions in the film industry. In recent years he was Content Acquisition Manager at Pathé and a programmer of Royal Theatre Tuschinski. He is also a committee member at Cinekid and a guest lecturer at the Netherlands Film Academy.  Korteweg began his career at Eyeworks Film & TV Drama, and in his career he has held responsibility for the planning and co-production of films at RTL and Videoland, as well as sold film rights at Penguin Random House in Barcelona.

    Topkapi Films will be bringing their premium content to this year’s Venice Film Festival, with their latest film Holly, produced by Prime Time and Mirage in coproduction with Dardenne brothers’ Les Film du Fleuve, Tarantula, Topkapi and Agat Films,  making its international debut. Meanwhile, at the forthcoming Netherlands Film Festival, two series, Santos and Mocked Up, will premiere this September. Also coming up is the launch of their latest feature film on Netflix, Happy Ending.

  7. NL Film and BNNVARA Unveil Second Season for Hit Crime Drama Anonymous for NPO

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    Banijay Benelux today confirms NL Film has landed a second series commission of tense thriller Anonymous. The series is a co-production between NL Film and BNNVARA for broadcaster NPO.

    When crime has a grip on the country and systems seem to be failing, a couple emerges to take justice into their own hands. History teacher Jurre and prosecutor Saar each relentlessly battle the criminal underworld, fighting for the safety of their family. There is one twist: they don’t know about each other. Saar fights her battle against the criminal gang ‘Cabo’ as a public prosecutor, while Jurre does it his way, as Anonymous.

     

    The debut series of the crime thriller garnered an average of 1 million viewers each episode via TV and on-demand platforms and can still be streamed via NPO Start. Banijay Rights handles international distribution.

    The cast of Anonymous includes Jeroen Spitzenberger and Anniek Pheifer portraying the complex characters of Jurre and Sarah. The ensemble also features Mies van Rooijen and Sil van der Zwan. The series is directed by Diederik van Rooijen.

    Dennis Cornelisse, Producer at NL Film, says: “In a world where justice hangs in the balance, Anonymous is a gripping thriller about a couple’s relentless pursuit fighting for what they believe is right, and a reminder that every day heroes walk among us. As a creative company, it is always brilliant to have the opportunity to delve deeper into a story with a returning series and we look forward to working with BNNVARA and NPO on the new season.”

     

    Diederik van Rooijen, Director, adds: “Anonymous is far from over. Thanks to the many loyal followers, a second season is in the works for this successful crime series. I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve created, and the show has been so embraced by viewers. The fight against crime has only just begun for Jurre and his family!”

    Recent hits for the Amsterdam-based production company NL Film include Golden Hour (NPO), Modern Love (Amazon Prime Video), and feature film Costa.

  8. NL Film Unveils New Creative Team

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    Banijay Benelux today unveils the new creative team of NL Film, with acclaimed director Anne de Clercq joining to lead the charge, along with senior promotions from within the business.

    The new Creative Director, de Clercq will manage NL Film’s creative team and portfolio, alongside her directing work. She will work closely with Jochum ten Haaf, who has been promoted to Head of Development, along with Creative Producers Henriette Drost and Claire Zhou. The NL Film ‘Creative Room’ will develop new stories and acquire IP to strengthen the business, producing films for large audiences as well as internationally driven drama series.

    Dennis Cornelisse, Production Director at NL Film, says: “Anne is one of the best in the business, she is multi-talented, inspiring and a highly in-demand creative. With her infectious enthusiasm and knowledge about the profession, along with her track record as a director, she will add great value to our company. The team is now complete with Jochum, Henriette and Claire and we can’t wait to see the new projects they develop together with Anne.”

     Anne de Clerq, Creative Director NL Film, adds; “I have a huge amount of energy for this new step in my career. NL Film is widely known for its quality drama and films, which perfectly suits my penchant for telling beautiful, catchy stories with imperfect characters. I am very much looking forward to working and collaborating with my new ambitious colleagues.”

    Versatile drama and film director, de Clercq has an extensive track record across film, television, and commercial content. A specialist in feel-good films that don’t shy away from the pain, she is one of the most sought-after directors in the Netherlands. Recent credits include cinema hit Soof 3 and Snelle- Zonder Jas Naar Buiten, a documentary about Dutch rapper and singer Snelle.

    Meanwhile, new Head of Development, ten Haaf is mostly known as an actor for his role as Vincent van Gogh in the West End and Broadway. His love of drama originated with his writing career, and his credits include numerous successful series including Commandos, Heer & Meester and Dokter Tinus.

    Recent hits for the Amsterdam-based production company NL Film include Golden Hour (NPO), Modern Love(Amazon Prime Video), and feature film Costa.

  9. Banijay Benelux Acquires Majority Stake in Jonnydepony

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    Banijay Benelux today announces it will further expand its scripted activities in Belgium through a majority stake in production company, Jonnydepony.  Further broadening its drama portfolio and content offering both locally and internationally, the label will join the Belgian footprint alongside Banijay Belgium, which is behind successful soap opera, Familie.

    Jonnydepony, founded in 2015 by Philippe De Schepper, is an independent production label specialising in the development and production of high-quality drama series like acclaimed Black-out (distributed to eight countries), Transport (selected for Series Mania) and Arcadia (soon to be seen at VRT, KRO-NCRV and WDR/SWR). Led by Helen Perquy (co-owner since 2018) and Philippe De Schepper, it is known for its efficient and professional delivery of alluring international (co)productions.

    Peter Lubbers, CEO Banijay Benelux: “Jonnydepony has built up a brilliant reputation in Belgium, but also in the Netherlands and Germany, under the leadership of Helen and Philippe. A unique duo with an extremely creative and successful signature, the label is a magnet for great talent in front of, and behind-the-camera. We welcome the team with enthusiasm and look forward to expanding the scripted offer together.”

    Helen Perquy & Philippe De Schepper, both CEO and Producer Jonnydepony: “We are proud to enter a new phase together with our team and become part of a renowned international player. In the rapidly evolving media ecosystem, it is nice that a partner like Banijay, which values IP rights, is strong in global distribution and has a global creative network, joins forces with our company. We look forward to working with the group to further grow our business in both the local and international markets.”

  10. Banijay Benelux Partners with Topkapi

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    Banijay Benelux today confirms it has formed a strategic partnership with Amsterdam-based Topkapi. In officiating its relationship with the Flying Dutchmen and The Terrible Eighties drama producer, the group further expands its scripted portfolio and strengthens its footing in the international market, driving further development and co-production opportunities in the drama and film space.

    Behind films like Piece of My Heart and Close Topkapi is an established production company with more than 25 years of experience in development and production across drama and film. Creatively and business-led by Laurette Schillings, Arnold Heslenfeld and Frans van Gestel, the international entity has been at the forefront of 50 international co-productions, and has over 100 titles in its catalogue. Its award-winning offering includes Academy Award and BAFTA-winning film Another Round, and Close, which is currently in the running for four European accolades.

    Peter Lubbers, CEO Banijay Benelux: “We are very much looking forward to working with Topkapi, which has a great reputation for high-quality drama series and films both locally and internationally. With an impressive global creative network that fits seamlessly with our co-production ambitions beyond our national borders, the label is a perfect fit for our family.”

    Frans van Gestel, Producer Topkapi: “In Banijay Benelux, we have found an international operating partner that allows us to realise our ambition in the field of co-producing international series. The clout of its wider sales and distribution arm allows us to bring our new titles and catalogue, with more than 100 different films and series, to the attention of parties outside the Netherlands and also build new relationships with international writers, directors and producers.”

    Banijay Benelux has built a strong track record in scripted via NL Film, which to date has been behind hits including Penoza, Modern Love, Van der Valk and Commandos, and with EndemolShine Scripted, responsible for Bonnie & Clyde, Roombeek and daily drama, GTST.

  11. Banijay Benelux Appoints Alex Doff, Chief Operating Officer

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    Banijay Benelux, the leading home for content producers across the Netherlands and Belgium, has expanded its board of directors to include a new Chief Operating Officer – Alex Doff. Sitting on the board with CEO, Peter Lubbers and CFO, Colin Delahay, he will also continue as Managing Director, NL Film.

     

    In his new role, Doff, collaborating closely with the territory’s production labels, will be responsible for the business and organisational management of Banijay Benelux. As part of his remit, he will also oversee its Legal, Operations and Business Affairs departments. Elsewhere, Delahay will take care of Finance, IT and M&A, and Lubbers, the overarching group and talent leadership.

     

    Peter Lubbers, CEO Banijay Benelux: “With Alex, we have gained a reliable, strategic, and above all, pleasant business partner, who knows the market both on a local and international level. With years of experience within the media, on a financial and business level, he brings an enormous network, and his passion for film and television is invaluable for our organisation.”

     

    Alex Doff, COO Banijay Benelux: “Banijay Benelux is a truly creative hub, where every conceivable genre is developed and produced by our labels. A versatile group that offers true opportunity and growth prospects for its talent, there is so much potential for growth and I look forward to working with Peter and the wider team on maximising it.”

     

    Doff began his career at John de Mol Productions, after which he worked for four years as Business Director at Endemol. Then taking on a short adventure at RTL, where he was responsible for the acquisition of Dutch Content, he moved to Talpa Productions as Business Director and later became Manager Operations of Talpa International. A few years on, he was appointed Business Director of Talpa Fiction and also held the position of Finance Director of Talpa Global. In 2020, he joined ITV Global Entertainment as Finance Director and in March 2022, moved to NL Film as Managing Director.

  12. Banijay Belgium Brings Back Fear Factor

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    Banijay Belgium, a Banijay Benelux label, today announces it will produce an all-new season of the iconic format Fear Factor for SBS owned, Play4.

     

    With the biggest comedian in Belgium, Alex Agnew as the host, Fear Factor is set to become the reality game show of the Flanders. Heroes are created as duos face a series of terrifying, yet incredible challenges to win a cash prize. How will they get on when having to tightrope walk between skyscrapers or be submerged underwater in a cage? Will their teammates’ encouragement embolden them to confront their fears, or will they be unable to complete the phenomenal tasks? In this series stars will be created as only the bravest team will accomplish all the awe-inspiring challenges and take home the money.

     

    Originally created by EndemolShine Netherlands, Fear Factor is internationally renowned with numerous series in India and the US. Following its success, EndemolShine Netherlands created a spin-off for younger viewers, Cool Factor. This iteration was popular in Belgium airing for six seasons on Nickelodeon.

     

    Isabelle Dams, CEO of Banijay Belgium says: “Guts, adventure, and excitement are in the very DNA of Fear Factor and we have developed challenges which will amaze contestants and viewers in Belgium.  Alex Agnew is bold, loud, and ultra-cool, making him the perfect host for the show. This new commission showcases our unbounded creativity, and it is a great addition to Banijay Belgium’s 2022 slate.”

     

    Lucas Green, Global Head of Content Operations at Banijay comments:Fear Factor is a classic format where learning to overcome fears and take on unbelievable challenges is as relevant today as when it first aired. We are seeing a strong resurgence of the show globally and we’re excited to see Banijay Belgium take the show to the next level with its local flare added to this reboot.”

     

    Banijay Belgium produces premium content in numerous genres, from factual to comedy and even feature films. Working closely with national and international broadcasters’ credits include Familie, Hunted, Extreme Make-over Home Edition and GR5.