The globalization of entertainment industry is influencing the world second largest economy, China. Many Chinese TV channels choose to buy copyright from popular foreign programs and do the Chinese version. The Voice of China is quite an success in China, however The X-factor is not that lucky.
Just like The Voice of Holland, The X-factor is a music reality television competition program with four celebrity tutors. It was created in UK. In 2013, just one year after The Voice of China has released, Hunan TV announced to produce the Chinese version of The X-factor. On the opposite, it turned out to be a failure by receiving lots of negative comments from audience and professionals. The ratings are low as well.
To analysis the reason, we should start with the contestants, although at the beginning there are more highlight points for audience, the contestants are main reason for audience to keep watching. Apparently, the level of contestants is very disappointing. According to the online comments, audience doesn’t want to listen to them.
Secondly, the staff from The X-factor 100% copy their filming technique and shooting script to Chinese one. Lots of overhead shoots, live and promo shots grafted host site quickly and then switch to red carpet, mentor appearances and contestants stands beside welcome them etc. but full replication, and high-density interspersed made audience shout ‘dizziness’.
Since the cultural differences, the adaptation of the audience is not the same, so this caused discomfort. For original The X-factor version, its audience always love to directly express emotion and love to see the intense frequent scenes. However the traditional Chinese audience really need time to adapt and accept.
On other side, the PK game between mentors, between the mentors and the players are the biggest bright spots in addition except singing competition. And the mentors are often the most prestigious music producer, and the top international stars of various fields. Of course, these outstanding mentors are based on the European and American music market prosperity. However, in China, ‘cross field’ mentors took the opportunity in reality shows. Domestic reality show, have taken advantage of the program from the contest between mentors. This allows some of unprofessional mentor be involved in to a music program, so that they could not act properly during the show. Among these 4 mentors: a professional singer, an actress, a producer and a rock star. When the mentors interact with each other, the conflicts are making audience tired of watching.
To sum up, I believe that the failure of The Chinese X-factor is caused by fully copy without any localization, positioned too high, producing too extreme, and bad mentor choices. This is way far away from ordinary Chinese audience.