S4C orders more episodes of quiz series following success of Celtic format partnership


Welsh broadcaster S4C has commissioned more episodes of the quiz show Celwydd Noeth, the Welsh version of the series The Lie by Scotland's STV and Ireland's TV3.

The announcement comes as producers and broadcasters from Celtic countries gather in Dugavarn, County Waterford, Ireland, for the 2016 Celtic Media Festival – 20-23 April. The festival celebrates media in the Celtic countries and minority languages and brings the industries together to talk, form partnerships and share ideas.

The Welsh version Celwydd Noeth is made by independent producers Cwmni Da and was first broadcast on S4C in January 2015. The partnership with STV and TV3, along with format co-owners GroupM Entertainment and distributors Red Arrow International, has proved successful in producing a high-quality entertaining series which has been a hit with S4C viewers.

Elen Rhys, S4C Content Commissioner for Entertainment says, "We're thrilled with the response Celwydd Noeth has had from viewers and, as a result, we're pleased to announce that we've commissioned more episodes for broadcast next year. But viewers won't have to wait that long, since we already have more new episodes in the bag, ready to show on S4C in September."

Celwydd Noeth is produced for S4C by Cwmni Da, based in Caernarfon, Gwynedd. Neville Hughes, Cwmni Da Creative Director, says that the partnership with TV3 and STV has many advantages for them as programme makers;

Neville Hughes says, "This partnership meant we were able to take a proven and successful quiz format and really make it our own. The simplicity of the competition rules appealed to us; firstly for the entertainment value but also because we could give it a Welsh identity for the S4C audience."

The quiz is dubbed 'the quiz with no questions'. Working in pairs, all the competitors have to do is pick out the lie from among a list of true facts. Each level wins them more money for the pot, but each level also increases the list of facts, and more chances to trip up. Sound simple? Not when you're under the studio lights with only 30 seconds on the clock!

Cwmni Da introduced experienced presenter Nia Roberts, a familiar face in Welsh broadcasting, to lead the S4C series, and the producers worked closely with a team of translators and academics to tailor the questions for the Welsh audience without straying from the quiz's uncanny ability to catch people out under pressure.

There were also benefits to production values, as all three partners filmed their series together in the same studio – sharing resources, time and experience.

Neville Hughes explains, "Sharing a studio in Dublin, filming our own series in quick succession to STV and TV3, cut down costs dramatically without skimping on quality. It resulted in a slick and professional production which would have been very difficult to achieve to such a standard if we were working alone from scratch with the budget available to us. We very much look forward to going back to the studio to work on more episodes.

"We have gained hugely from the experiences of the other producers and were also pleased to share with them what we had learnt. For example, we were the first to make a celebrity version, broadcast over Christmas 2015, showing that the format can work for special themed episodes too."

The filming of the next series of Celwydd Noeth is expected to take place at the end of the year, or early 2017. Quiz fans in Wales should keep an eye out for their chance to take part.

In the meantime, new episodes of Celwydd Noeth will be screened on S4C in September.


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