The successful and weird phenomenon known as the Eurovision Song Contest reportedly will see a North American version in the near future. The song competition, which pits European countries and others including Israel and Australia, against each other for the campiest song possible, could launch in the U.S. in 2021.
Israel won the contest last year and is hosting the finals by default.
The European Broadcasting Union has asked Swedish production company Brain Academy to shop the concept, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
“Outside of sports, the Eurovision Song Contest is the biggest TV show on Earth, it unites a continent and everybody gets to vote,” Peter Settman, CEO and creative director of Brain Academy, told THR. “We can’t wait to introduce this wonderful competition to the biggest TV market in the world. TV/video audiences are getting bigger every year so this is the perfect time to bring this exciting show to the American public.”
The North American version is officially being developed as the “American Song Contest,” the EBU confirmed to the trade magazine.
The Eurovision Song Contest is entering its 64th year and draws about 200 million viewers worldwide, with more than 40 countries competing. Although many of the winners go on to obscurity, it had one standout winner in a group called ABBA.
“For over six decades the Eurovision Song Contest, powered by public service media, has brought audiences together with its values of diversity, universality and inclusivity,” said Jon Ola Sand, executive supervisor of Eurovision for the EBU. “As part of the EBU’s overall strategy to grow the brand it’s time for Eurovision to go stateside to reach even more viewers. We’re delighted that this growth will be overseen by some of the people that have created some of its’ brightest moments.”