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The International Encyclopedia of Media Studies, 7 Volume Set by Fabienne Darling-Wolf, Radhika Parameswaran, Erica Scharrer, Vicki Mayer, Sharon Mazzarella, Kelly Gates, John Nerone, Angharad N. Valdivia

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12

Global Ugly Betty

International Format Trade and the Production of National Adaptations

Lothar Mikos and Marta Perrotta

ABSTRACT

The global television landscape in the first decade of the twenty-first century is a complex terrain of contradictory developments and trends. On the one hand, there are globally successful formats and series. On the other hand, each national TV landscape presents its own adaptations of successful programs from other countries. From 2002, the Colombian telenovela Yo soy Betty, la fea (I Am Betty, the Ugly One) has traveled around the world in dubbed and adapted versions. This chapter deals with the comparative study of the original format and of four adaptations (in Germany, Russia, Spain, USA), focusing on licensing, production, and how these conditions have impacted the narrative, dramaturgical, and aesthetic structure of these different national adaptations. The global franchise of scripted and non-scripted formats as a complex network of flows and counterflows frames the chapter.

The global television landscape in the first decade of the twenty-first century is a complex terrain of contradictory developments and trends. On the one hand, there are globally successful formats and series like Big Brother, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? – or Sex and the City and Lost. On the other hand, each national TV landscape presents its own national adaptations of successful programs from other countries. The same audiences that are fascinated by such international ...

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