Australian entertainment is having a moment. “Bluey” has become a favorite of children and parents around the world and has even led to American kids speaking with Australian accents. “Neighbors,” the long-running Australian soap opera that helped launch the careers of stars like Russell Crowe, Kylie Minogue, and Chris Hemsworth, was given a second chance after being picked up by Amazon Freevee. And three new Australian series have reached 10 times the demand for the average series in the U.S. since May.
Leading the pack is Amazon Prime Video’s “Deadloch,” which premiered in June. “The Clearing,” a Disney+ original thriller available on Hulu in the U.S., was released around the same time as “Deadloch” and had similar demand. Since Aug. 5, “The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart,” another Prime Video original, has had higher demand in the U.S. than any other Australian series released this year.
Then there’s the influence of Australian entertainers to consider. Sarah Snook just wrapped up her thrice-Emmy-nominated role as Shiv Roy in HBO’s final season of “Succession,” and the biggest blockbuster of the year, “Barbie,” stars an Australian, Margot Robbie (though some might question her Aussie credentials after she momentarily forgot that “barbie” means something else entirely back home).
The enthusiasm for Australian shows is convenient for American studios, since the country could be a source of imported content to help media companies fill any gaps left by ongoing strikes. But in the longer term, American audiences might find that series from Down Under appeal to their tastes, given the countries’ common language and cultural similarities.
Children’s series from around the world have been successful in breaking into the U.S. market and reaching levels of demand higher than many U.S. series. But “Bluey” in particular has been steadily increasing in demand over the past few years as more American families fall in love with this Aussie import. For the past year, “Bluey” has consistently had higher demand than “Peppa Pig” and in some months had even higher demand than “Pokémon.” Still, “Bluey” is just one example of a broader uptick in demand for Australian content in the U.S.
While “Bluey” has been gradually building up its audience for years, a string of recent new series have helped drive demand for Australian content higher in the U.S. We can look at U.S. demand for British series in the past few years as a point of comparison. The U.K. continues to be the largest source of imported English-language content in the U.S.
Over the last three years, the average demand for new British series in the U.S. was greater than American demand for new Australian series. But that changed this year. As of August, the average demand for new Australian series in the U.S. is nearly double the average demand of British series that have premiered so far this year.
There could be more Australian shows coming to the U.S., especially if the Hollywood strikes drag on. “Bay of Fires” (like “Deadloch,” a dark comedy crime drama set in Tasmania) has seen strong growth in American demand since premiering on July 16. However, it is not yet available to stream in the U.S., making it a potentially lucrative acquisition for any streamer looking to capitalize on the current Australia mania.
Christofer Hamilton is an industry insights manager at Parrot Analytics, a WrapPRO partner. For more from Parrot Analytics, visit the Data and Analysis Hub.
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