Duration: Series of 50 minutes. Two to Six parts.
Budget Range: €90,000 - €120,000 (in exceptional circumstances, budgets can be negotiated)
Broadcast: Sunday 21.30
Channel RTÉ One
Season: January 2024 onwards
Open Date: 08th March 2023
Documentaries & Series Sunday Nights
Sunday nights have the biggest available TV audience of the week but competition from big Drama on other channels is often fierce. The very best factual series will be rewarded by a large, loyal audience. This is the home of big returnable formats; Room to Improve, Great House Revival and short, highly entertaining factual series; Dr Eva’s Great Escape and Brendan Grace’s Thanks for the Memories.
We are keen to develop more returnable series that keep the joy in Sunday nights. We are currently well served when it comes to property but are keen to develop lightly formatted returnable series that are welcomed by viewers and become part of their seasonal habits.
Sunday is a time for stories, characters, and entertainment. Room to Improve delivers big audiences because of the quality of its story telling as well as the popularity of key talent. Great House Revival similarly tells big stories over a protracted timeframe guaranteeing a pay-off.
Although DIY SOS and Raised by the Village play earlier in the evening, they have all the ingredients for a Sunday night: strong talent, great storytelling, laughter, and tears. Can you develop other loosely formatted factual series with big dramatic arcs or are there formats that work elsewhere that you think might be adopted for an Irish audience?
The blend of Factual and Entertainment that have delivered well on Sunday Nights. Brendan Grace: Thanks for the Memories (although it ended up playing on Mondays) and Dr Eva’s Great Escape are good examples of programmes that combine talent and entertainment and The Way We Were brought a host of big names to an archive based social history project.
Over the past couple of years there has been a huge appetite for nostalgia and for simpler times, this has probably passed, and we are now looking to celebrate life and relationships in a whole new way.
Travel may be on the cards again but is there a new and immersive approach that delivers the need for entertainment, talent, and human interaction on Sundays?
Most of all we need strong formats and exceptional stories that celebrate universal human values and bring the audience on an emotional journey. We are always looking for the next returnable brand that can become an established part of viewing habits.
We ask, in the first instance, that producers submit ideas into the e-commissioning system Login | RTE (rtegroup.ie) under the programme category "Factual Documentaries & Series, RTÉ One Sundays 21:30 2023"
All ideas are accepted and considered on a rolling commissioning basis. The next group of slots we will be filling are in from T1 2024. Ideas to fill these slots should be fully developed by late April for decisions in early May 2023
Ideally, we would prefer to receive programme proposals that correspond with the above advertised brief(s). However, if you have an idea that does not fit within these briefs and you think it might be of interest to us, please submit your proposal to the General Call-out.