The Shmooze

Fox vs. NBC Fight Heads to Holy Land

By Anne Cohen

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Breaking news: Fox is mad at NBC. Again.

This time, the network has taken the fight to the Holy Land, calling Israel a “third-world country without clear regulations,” because the country’s willingness to fund NBC projects over Fox ones.

According to Haaretz, NBC will receive up to 22 million shekels ($6.4 million) in funding from various government agencies,while the Fox’s funding request was turned down. So obviously, rule of law must have broken down completely.

NBC is scheduled to start shooting “Dig,” a six-part series about an FBI agent investigating the murder of an archeologist (the idea came from Keshet CEO Avi Nir), in Jerusalem in the coming months.

Fox is currently filming “Tyrant,” a series about the life of an Arab dictator written in cooperation with Homeland creator Gideon Raff. Though the pilot was filmed in Morocco, the set was moved to agricultural land near Kfar Sava. According to Haaretz, production costs on “Tyrant” are estimated at $30 million, with about 1,300 people providing services on and off-set.

Which one is better for Israel’s image, archeological thriller or Arab despot? Apparently, Fox thinks the latter.


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