ABC Picks up Israel’s Second Screen Hit ‘Rising Star’

By Jordan Chariton 

ABC has ordered 10 episodes of the hit Israeli show “Rising Star,” a live singing competition where second screen audiences decide winners and losers.

Produced by recently-formed Keshet DCP (a joint venture between Israel’s Keshet International and Dick Clark’s DC Media), “Rising Star” has become a second screen phenomenon in Israel since its launch this fall, becoming the first talent competition featuring a custom app where viewers vote for their favorite competitors, with a singer advancing once they’ve reached the 70% mark.

Viewers calling the shots has paid off for the show, as it has a second screen participation rate 10 times higher than previous shows while maintaining a viewers to second screen participation rate over 30%.

Production-wise, the show also differs from American hits like “American Idol” and “The Voice” in that it is entirely live, with no pre-taped auditions. Performers are also separated from their in studio audiences by a giant LED screen, but united with their digital audiences, as images of digital  voters appear on the stage screen via their Facebook photos, with performers being able to see how high their vote tally is climbing in real time.

The show is set to debut in summer 2014.