Rogers and VICE to Create Major Production Studio for Canadian Content

VICE to deliver Canadian-made news and entertainment programming across "the holy trinity" of mobile, web and TV in 2015 

Studio to develop and collaborate with the next generation of young directors, filmmakers, journalists and producers across Canada

TORONTO, Oct. 30, 2014 /CNW/ - After 20 years of traversing the globe to create the gold standard in print, photojournalism and video, VICE Media will return home to Canada to team up with Rogers and establish a state-of-the-art multimedia production studio. The new Toronto studio, which will operate under VICE's creative direction, will be dedicated to producing the very best Canadian content for mobiles, tablets, computers and TV screens and will be exported around the world.

The VICE Canada Studio will address the dramatic shift in Canada's media landscape, as young people increasingly consume news and entertainment from their mobile and digital devices (nearly 70 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds receive news and entertainment from their mobiles, tablets or a computer, versus only 30 per cent of 40-year-olds and over).

"We wanted to build a powerhouse for Canadian digital content focused on 18 to 34-year-olds," said Guy Laurence, President and Chief Executive Officer, Rogers. "VICE was the obvious choice to partner with. They started in Canada but then moved to New York to prove they could build a global media company, which they've done.  However, they've never forgotten their Canadian roots and have always wanted to open a Canadian production studio. I'd worked with Shane's team on small projects before but this time we sat across the table and said let's do this and let's make it big. We're going to shake up Canada with exciting, provocative content and we'll export it around the world."

Shane Smith, Founder, VICE Media, said: "It was 20 years ago, deep down in the port of Old Montreal that we set out to try and make a magazine that didn't suck. This year we return to the homeland, all our hard lessons learned, to build from scratch a completely horizontally and vertically integrated ultra-modern media entity. Essentially we are building a content creation hub that will generate premium video for a cutting edge media company that will program - simultaneously - the holy trinity of convergence; mobile, online, and TV."

"Our partner on this ambitious project will be Rogers. We'll build something truly special, deeply innovative and dedicated to the youth of this country. Rogers and VICE will program the content created out of our studio on its mobile platforms, its online outlets and its television properties. This revolutionary idea puts us not only at the forefront of tech/media space in Canada but we believe our bold experiment will be followed by media and tech companies around the world. Why? Because this is the future of media. We are excited as hell to be doing this with them and excited as hell to build our most ambitious project to date in Canada," Smith added.

VICE Canada properties will form part of a $100 million joint venture between Rogers and VICE Media that includes:

  • The VICE Canada Studio, a multimedia, state-of-the-art production facility based in Toronto, will:
    • Produce Canadian-focused content including news, drama, documentaries and programming covering food, sports, fashion, tech, and more, for all screens;
    • Partner and collaborate with Canada's best young directors, producers, journalists, editors and filmmakers, giving them the tools and guidance to create the next wave of great content coming out of Canada;
    • Include an incubator featuring programming and workshops intended to develop and foster students and burgeoning journalists across Canada.
  • The VICE TV Network, a dedicated Canadian TV channel distributed throughout Canada;
  • Mobile content, including exclusives and adapted content;
  • VICE's network of Canadian digital properties, featuring more Canadian content.

The VICE Canada Studio will make a range of content including:

  • Daily mobile blasts of exciting Canadian-made news and information including exclusives for Rogers and Fido customers;
  • VICE TV Formats, a brand new slate of television formats developed, produced and made with new Canadian talent to air on the VICE TV Network;
  • VICE Plus, mobile adaptations of VICE's new and best-known franchises, including the environmental show TOXIC; and F*CK THAT'S DELICIOUS starring the rapper and former chef Action Bronson, as well as pilots for new VICE shows.

VICE Studio, VICE Mobile, and VICE PLUS will launch in Canada in 2015. 

About Rogers Communications
Rogers Communications is a leading diversified public Canadian communications and media company. We are Canada's largest provider of wireless communications services and one of Canada's leading providers of cable television, high-speed Internet and telephony services to consumers and businesses. Through Rogers Media, we are engaged in radio and television broadcasting, televised shopping, magazines and trade publications, sports entertainment, and digital media. We are publicly traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: RCI.A and RCI.B) and on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: RCI).  For further information about the Rogers group of companies, please visit rogers.com.

About VICE Media
VICE is a global youth media company and the industry leader in producing and distributing the best online video content in the world. Launched in 1994 as a punk magazine, VICE now operates out of 36 offices globally, and has expanded into a multimedia network, including the world's premier source for original online video, VICE.COM; an international network of digital channels; a television & feature film production studio; a magazine; a record label; and a book-publishing division.

VICE's digital channels include VICE Sports, a sports channel; MUNCHIES, a food channel; VICE News, a dedicated news channel; Noisey, a music discovery channel; The Creators Project, dedicated to the arts and creativity; Motherboard, covering cultural happenings in technology; THUMP, focusing on global dance music and culture; and Fightland, a channel dedicated to the culture of MMA. VICE acquired British fashion publication i-D in 2012 and re-launched i-D's digital presence at i-D.co, a video-driven fashion site. In 2013, VICE launched a news-magazine series on HBO titled VICE. The Emmy Award-winning series just completed its second season; seasons three and four to air in 2015 and 2016.

Image with caption: "Guy Laurence, President and Chief Executive Officer, Rogers and Shane Smith, Founder, VICE Media announce partnership, including state-of-the-art multimedia production studio (CNW Group/Rogers Communications Inc.)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20141030_C5502_PHOTO_EN_7352.jpg

SOURCE: Rogers Communications Inc.

For further information: Paula Lash, Rogers Communications, Paula.lash@rci.rogers.com; Michelle Lomack, Rogers Communications, Michelle.Lomack@rci.rogers.com, 416-819-2783; Alex Detrick, VICE Communications, Alex.detrick@vice.com; Cappi Williamson, VICE Communications, Cappi.williamson@vice.com

RELATED LINKS
http://www.rogers.com

Custom Packages

Browse our custom packages or build your own to meet your unique communications needs.

Start today.

CNW Membership

Fill out a CNW membership form or contact us at 1 (877) 269-7890

Learn about CNW services

Request more information about CNW products and services or call us at 1 (877) 269-7890