BBC Studios announced today that the world’s biggest motoring entertainment show, Top Gear, is to have three new local versions commissioned by Discovery Networks Nordics.
Nordisk Film TV, a Banijay Group company and BBC Studios Nordics’ production partner, will produce versions for Denmark, Sweden and Norway.
Discovery Networks Nordics’ Kanal 5 will be the home of the Danish and Swedish versions while TVNorge will host the Norwegian remake. Production will start in the fall with the three new Top Gear series due to air in 2020.
Demonstrating their driving prowess for Norway’s Top Gear will be stunt driver and Formula Drift World Champion (2015) Fredric Aasbø, musician and TV personality Esben “Dansken” Selvig and TV host and vintage car collector Petter Schjerven. Sweden’s presenter line-up includes a six times Speedway World Champion in Tony Rickardsson who will be joined by actor, comedian, musician Marko Lethosalo and Adam Alsing who is one of the country’s best known TV personalities. In Denmark the Top Gear presenters will be long time TV personality and car enthusiast Felix Smith, actor Dar Salim, known for roles in Game of Thrones, Warrior and The Devil’s Double, and former race car driver Jesper Carlsen who is now working as Relations Manager for Danish Formula 1 driver Kevin Magnussen.
Multi-award-winning with a global audience of around 350m, Top Gear takes the world’s insatiable and limitless appetite for the motor vehicle, strips away the boring stats and adds enthusiasm, thrilling stunts and challenges – bringing petrol-fuelled entertainment to a broad audience. Here, cars are always the starting point for epic road trips, over-ambitious projects, and lashings of good old-fashioned mucking about by presenters and celebrities who really should know better. To date, the BBC Studios’ show has sold to over 200 territories around the world, with local versions produced in China, South Korea, USA, Australia, Russia, Italy and France.
Eivind Landsverk, Nordic programme director, Discovery Networks Nordics: “We are so excited to have the privilege to make local versions of one of the world’s biggest entertainment brands. Our mission at Discovery is to power people’s passion, and auto is one of our core fields of entertainment. That said, the magic of Top Gear lies in the show’s ability to attract not only the motor and engine superfans, but also those who do not know the difference between a Lada and a Lamborghini.”
Jan Salling, Head of BBC Studios Nordics – Formats & Productions: “To have one local version of Top Gear land in the Nordics is exciting but three at once takes it to another level. Audiences in these countries are in for a real treat with their very own fellow citizen petrol heads taking control of the wheel and presenting this iconic show Nordic style.”
Peter Hansen, Chief Creative Officer, Banijay Nordic: “It’s an absolute privilege to be reimagining one of the world’s most legendary unscripted titles for the Nordic audience. Building on our existing partnership with BBC Studios Nordics and relationship with Discovery Networks Nordics, we look forward to adding our own spin to the brand to fuel three new must-watch series.”
Duncan Gray, Top Gear’s Commercial Director: “The continued success of Top Gear France, a BBC Studios production for RMC, has shown that well-made local Top Gear formats can create their own style and find their own audiences. Having worked with Banijay and Discovery Nordics in the initial planning for this, I’m sure they will continue this success and create some outstanding Top Gear TV for the Nordic region.”
Top Gear Series 27, with Chris Harris and new presenters Paddy McGuinness and Freddie Flintoff, premiered on BBC Two in June with a peak audience of 2.8 million viewers.