The singing competition genre has gone off-key in the U.S., but ABC is hoping that a hit series from Israel — Rising Star, in which audiences vote in real-time, via the show’s app —will get it back on track. As I wrote at Quartz,
Speaking to reporters at the Television Critics Association’s winter press tour in January, ABC Entertainment Group President Paul Lee called Rising Star “the next generation of reality shows,” adding, “It’s almost like a modern Colosseum. I mean, people are literally voting up or down. … And it really has been a big hit over there. We think it will be a star maker over here.”
Easier said than done. After all, TV success in one country does not always translate to another. For every American Idol—based on the British series Pop Idol—there is an X Factor, which couldn’t replicate the UK original’s success here. (Rising Star has also been sold to France, Germany, Italy and Russia.)
I have my doubts for several reasons, most notably the fact that the show will air in four different time zones, meaning that not everyone will be able to vote “live.” And it was just two summers ago that ABC announced another heavily-hyped singing competition, Duets, which faded quickly. It seems unlikely that Rising Star will fare any better.