Facebook and Instagram parent company Meta has made an unusual inroad into Vietnam with reality show “Let’s Feast Vietnam,” which launched on Netflix this week in parts of Asia.
The 10-episode “Let’s Feast Vietnam” (aka “Hành Trình K? Thú”) is part cooking competition and part-way travelogue. It also borrows something of the ‘reels’ short video feature that makes social media apps so addictive, in that contestants are required to produce video clips along their journey.
The show involves 14 content creators from six countries who embark on a voyage through the Southeast Asian nation, encountering beautiful landscapes, learning culinary arts and being required to take on challenging missions.
Destinations include the historic capital of Hanoi, the natural wonders of Ha Long Bay, buzzy commercial capital Ho Chi Minh City and pearl island Phu Quoc.
The contestants are accompanied by various celebrities and influencers who act as commentators along the way. These include celebrity couple (leading Vietnamese actor) Tran Thanh and (Korean singer) Hari Won and supermodel pair Minh Trieu and Ky Duyen.
The contestants’ reels and a mass of behind-the-scenes footage will be made available on the fan pages of the contestants and the commentator celebrities, with an estimated 50 million followers on Facebook and Instagram.
A prize of VND500 million ($21,000) will go to the team with the best reels, chosen by their fellow participants. A further VND300 million will go to pair that produced the reels with the most views and interaction on social media.
Directed and produced by Nguyen Phan Quang Binh, the show is produced by Vietnam’s BHD Media and Meta in association with Vietnam’s Ministry of Culture, Sport & Tourism. It began airing within Vietnam on AVOD platform Danet and in other parts of Asia on Netflix. In other territories, rights sales are handled by BHD.
“After ‘Proud Vietnam’ and many programs under the ‘Facebook for Vietnam – #FB4VN’ campaign in 2020, this is a continuation of Meta’s efforts in making international friends in a new and effective way. [It contributes] to promoting the development of the post-pandemic digital economy, especially the tourism industry, building the national brand of Vietnam as a safe, friendly and attractive destination,” said Khoi Le, country director at Meta.
A range of commercial sponsors include: Vinpearl, VinWonders, Vinfast bikes, SM Green Smart Taxi, Vietjet Air, VIB Super Card, Cocoxim and Sabeco Saigon Special Beer.