La 7 is Italy’s answer to Channel 4. It’s also our first broadcast TV client in mainland Europe. We’re working with Italian film-maker Michelangelo Girardi and celebrity chef Simone Rugiati on “Food Maniac”, a series of web films which are the channel’s first programmes exclusively released online.
Programmes are filmed on location in Milan, edited in batches and released on La 7’s web site every Friday. The response so far has been fantastic, with a steadily growing audience and lots of social media interaction. The innovative series has also had coverage in the Italian national press – notably La Stampa and La Repubblica.
Having Simone to front the films helps a lot – as well as being a top chef, he is a natural performer and attracts a much younger audience than any UK cookery programme. His cooking style is like a culinary “remix” – taking classic dishes and giving them a fresh, contemporary style, working on his own or alongside guests – social cooking with friends.
Each film is shot on our own Canon 6D DSLR, with innovative use made of slow motion camera techniques. Scripts are by Michelangelo and Simone and there’s a lifestyle story behind each recipe – it’s an approach that we’re keen to replicate here in the UK, introducing a younger audience to proper cooking and real food.
Allora, until then, it’s Italian only I’m afraid.