Freedom for tramps: “Heads & Tails”
It seems they produce “a human dream”, carefully packed at easy-going format with humor and interesting information which will be very important for travelers practically among their trip. What was the beginning of this success and how it was indeed, — we have asked to the finance director of the show Nikita Chizhov.
Looking deep inside ourselves we should be fair to admit that all people actually want the same things: to be free, always young, and to burn their life in a flame of traveling adventures. Unfortunately, not every one of us can be brave enough to risk their life stability and go beyond the edge of their comfort to fulfill some uncertain dreams, but THEY did, yes, they really did it.
“Heads & Tails” tried to combine ordinary life with a dream, and, as a result, today we can enjoy an extraordinary product — the unique entertaining-educational project, which has quickly become one of the most highly-rated travel-shows.
It is a project created and produced since 2010 by Teen Spirit Studio video production company. The program was nominated and received TV “Taffy” Prize in the category “Best entertainment program” in 2014 and was honored in 2015 at a few nominations of Ukrainian prize “Triumph”: “Best information and entertainment”, “Best director of the television program”.
The most active audience in social networks among other TV shows is VKontakte with more than 650 thousands subscribers, YouTube — 406 thousands subscribers and 63 millions of views and Facebook with more than 122 thousands subscribers.
They seem to produce “the human dream”, carefully packed in easy-going format with humor and interesting information, which will be of great practical value for travelers on their trips.
We have questioned the Financial Director of the show Nikita Chizhov about the beginning of this success and how it became so.
— Actually it started with Jana Badoeva and her wish to act in an unusual and exciting TV show. It was the beginning of everything; anyway, it was not as easy as it seems to people now. Our success today is the result of a lengthy process with a lot of fails which ended in a lot of money wasted uselessly. Now we are successful because after every new fail we continue our attempts.
Nowadays, being the most well-known and well-loved travel-show in the territory of almost all post-Soviet states and broadcasting in the territory of modern Commonwealth of Independent States, it has become a favorite of all Russian-speaking states including Ukraine, Russia, Baltic States, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia and even Kirgizstan.
The travel-show has already visited all continents providing the people on the other side of the TV screen with an amazing opportunity to travel with them all around the world without even leaving their houses.
The first steps were made from the most well-known cities of the world. Then the team decided to show the real traveling conditions of exotic countries spending a month for tour preparation. Usually the show covers 4 or 5 cities during the trip.
Furthermore, today “Heads & Tails” are working on a round-world trip which is expected to cover 40 cities and will last 270 days. It is the 12th season of the travel-show and it has been in preparation for 4 months.
Usually there are proximately 7 or 10 members of the team involved in a trip. They are divided into two groups with two trip directions and two storylines within the show. Two trip directions in accordance with the tossed coin: the luxury one and the limited one.
The idea was to show the audience that you can travel on a very modest budget. The experience gained after the launch of the show was fantastic, and the audience fell in love with it. It provides useful advice on how to see the whole world cheaply. You can spend the night not only in a cheap hostel, but for free, for example, in a monas-tery or by hospitable hosts.
At the same time, it shows the life and experience of the people who do not need to limit their budget, showing all pros and cons of luxury traveling.
As all great things grow from a small wish, the idea of the show emerged from the desire to create something extraordinary, combining fun and business.
The show storyline is always the same, but it is always unexpectedly marvelous and fun. One city and two anchormen with the lot deciding, who is going live on one hundred dollars, and who is going to use a golden bank card during their trip.
Heads or tails — and you are a millionaire or a pauper. You live in luxury apartments or spend the night in an ordinary hostel. Dine in an exclusive restaurant or subsist on humble fast food.
Unfortunately for the one and for the good of the other hero of the show, the gold credit card does not mean a guarantee of an unforgettable vacation, as the practice shows that sometimes a hundred dollars is quite enough and even more than enough for you to have unforgettable impressions from the trip that will stay in your memory forever.
The course of every show always depends on the coin toss: heads or tails. We asked Nikita the question which interests our audience in the first place: “Indeed, is it really true that one person has no spending limit and uses the gold credit card during the trip and the other one has to get along with just 100$ for everything?”
“According to the rules, there are two anchors in the show and one of them has to get along only with a 100$ per two days: from the Saturday morning till the Sunday evening, but sometimes some anchors are trying to cheat the rules. They are contriving to eat some unaccounted hamburger or to use a taxy instead of a bus, but, frankly speaking, no more than this. Concerning the credit card, it is really unlimited as it is the reason of our show. However, for purchases over 10,000$ it is necessary to have the permission of the producer from Kyiv. Frankly speaking, the possibility to spend money is very limited indeed. They can spend it on some service or entertainment, but in accordance to the inner rules of the show, it is strictly forbidden to buy any valuable goods: stocks, financial instruments, real estate, cars and jewelry – everything that could be converted into money at any time. There are also some restrictions concerning charity and gambling, but generally there are almost no limits to anything related to the traveling.
The aim we are trying to reach is to show that traveling can actually be available for everyone. The show stimulates people to travel and gives them really useful advice as well. The television is able to transmit only the third part of the perception, that`s why we can confirm that it is possible and not very complicated indeed to get along and to see the world as it is in any city all over the world. Moreover, all members of the team: operators, scriptwriters, directors and even anchors admit that it is possible to have much brighter impressions if you travel on a modest budget. Luxury traveling is more comfortable but less interesting as all 5 stars hotels, best ever cars, yachts and helicopters are the same everywhere, no matter where you are, everything is very similar. Anyway, ordinary people like to pry into the life of the rich and they have such opportunity due to our show.”
Today, after a lot of challenges which they have met during the creation of the travel-show, Nikita Chizhov shares their secret with us.
— The main reason of their success is obviously the persistence of all team members whatever happened to do this the second one is a unique format of the show which combines humor and useful insider information for travelers highlighted from all angels.
There was an attempt to create something similar in Turkey, but the results were primitive, frankly speaking. They wanted to steal the idea, but they did not actually know how to create this kind of show format. I should say that, nevertheless, it is not as easy as it seems. But still, it is possible for any media production and for any region of the world, and TeenSpirit is even ready to share its secrets with those who want to repeat our trick. We are ready to couch media companies to create something similar using their sources.
The most attractive feature of the show is its excellent sense of humor: the show always chooses wonderful and charismatic anchors: Alan Badoev, Jana Badoeva, Andrei Bednyakov, Lesia Nikituk, Anastasia Korotkaiya, Nikolai Serga, Eugeniy Sinelnikov and Regina Todorenko — all of them make the show alive, and sometimes it even seems as if you personally know these people; they make the show bright and sparkling with fun dialogs and humor.
Combined with unique and extraordinary format, it makes the show an unbelievable sparkling adventure. Sometimes, even forgoing restrictions and forbiddances during the creation of the video, the team unveils the hidden real life of the place and city they visit. It seems nothing can stop the team in their aspiration to show their audience the totally naked city, revealing its innards, and the most unexpected moments of the big city life, both charming and disgusting.
As we can see, the combination of two factors: creative and crazy people in love with their job and elegant humor and fearless desire to create for the sake of creation, — has given birth to a marvelous product which has hypnotized almost the entire adventure seeking audience in the major part of post-Soviet media space.
Best wishes to “Heads & Tails” for your future plans and we hope you still have something up your sleeve to surprise us.