– Hosted by James Duthie, pilot is first project in Bell Media's content deal with United Artists Media Group and Highway Entertainment –
– New innovative format gives budding entrepreneurs the chance to make their dreams come true through the help of the consumer crowd –
– Celebrity entrepreneur experts Amber MacArthur and Ron Tite round out cast –
To tweet this release: http://bmpr.ca/1BO346w
OTTAWA, March 6, 2015 /CNW/ - The customer is always right! CTV announced today from Prime Time in Ottawa the start of production on the new one-hour reality series pilot, DREAM FUNDED: LET THE CROWD DECIDE, produced by CTV in association with Entertainment One (eOne), Highway Entertainment, and United Artists Media Group. The pilot is the first project from Bell Media's partnership with United Artists Media Group (a newly formed joint venture among MGM, Mark Burnett, Roma Downey, and Hearst Entertainment) and Omnicom Media Groups' Highway Entertainment. Hosted by TSN's James Duthie, DREAM FUNDED: LET THE CROWD DECIDE offers entrepreneurs the opportunity to earn up to $50,000 by pitching their untested business ideas to a crowd of 100 real consumers. Production begins today in Toronto through March 10.
"DREAM FUNDED puts an entertaining spin on the crowd-funding phenomenon, where the crowd invests in everyday products, making dreams come true for emerging entrepreneurs while creating a feel-good show," said Phil King, President – CTV, Sports, and Entertainment Programming. "With our partners' stellar background in non-scripted entertainment, we anticipate the pilot will deliver high-stakes drama and real-life happy endings."
"We're thrilled to be working with a market leader like CTV to bring this innovative format not only to Canada, but the world," said C. Scot Cru, Executive Vice President of International at United Artist Media Group who brokered the deal with CTV and Highway Entertainment. "Phil and his team have been great partners helping us to bring DREAM FUNDED to life."
"Highway Entertainment is thrilled to be working with UAMG, eOne, and Bell Media on this exciting project," said Adam Ivers, President & CEO Highway Entertainment. "This endeavour exemplifies our laser-focused efforts to establish Canada as the next proving-ground for great formats, and working with these companies gives us a great head start."
An original take on crowd-funding, DREAM FUNDED: LET THE CROWD DECIDE, puts all the power in the hands of the crowd, and in the span of one hour, makes dreams come true. In the pilot, seven budding entrepreneurs, known as the "Dreamers", will introduce their original product to a crowd of 100 curious customers, who each have $250 to support the Dreamer and new product they feel has the most potential. Throughout the show, celebrity entrepreneur experts Amber MacArthur and Ron Tite offer advice and feedback to the Dreamers, helping to elevate their pitches to a higher professional level. At the end of the episode, the Dreamers take home all of the money invested by the crowd, up to $25,000. And to raise the stakes even higher, the Dreamer who has earned the most receives an additional $25,000.
With more than 15 years of hosting experience, Gemini and Canadian Screen Award-Winner James Duthie brings his natural charisma to the role of host of DREAM FUNDED. One of Canada's most respected and popular broadcasters, Duthie is the host of TSN's extensive and award-winning hockey, Grey Cup, and Super Bowl coverage. In addition to his TSN duties, Duthie hosted two Olympic Games for CTV, is a two time best-selling author, and also hosted the half-hour CTV prime-time special titled WILL FERRELL ON SPORTS AND STUFF with superstar Will Farrell. His entertaining and sharp-witted style has made him a fan favourite across the country as well as one of the nation's most-followed media personalities on Twitter.
Along with host Duthie, the cast also includes celebrity entrepreneur experts Amber MacArthur and Ron Tite, two of the most respected marketing and business minds in the country. Amber MacArthur heads her own company with her brother called Konnekt, and has been a regular business host and expert for BNN, THE MARILYN DENIS SHOW, CP24, Fast Company, CNN, CBS, and Sirius Radio. Branding and Creativity Expert Ron Tite is CEO of The Tite Group, a content marketing agency based in Toronto, and was named one of the "Top 10 Creative Canadians" by Marketing magazine.
Known as the "Dreamers", the seven budding entrepreneurs featured in the pilot of DREAM FUNDED are:
- Danielle Tchao and Freda Langelo from Toronto
- Meghan Athavale (CEO) from Winnipeg
- Rachel Paulter and Andrew Martinko from Waterloo, Ont.
- Dimitri Poliderakis from Laval, Que.
- Bob Stueck from Toronto
- Joe Pantaleo and Stefano Karabas from Scarborough, Ont.
- Misko Dzamba and Jason Yu from Port Credit, Ont.
Bell Media, Canada's premier multimedia company, previously announced a partnership with United Artists Media Group and Highway Entertainment to create new television formats for Canadian and international audiences.
In addition to creating its own award-winning original factual programming, CTV has developed and broadcast some of the most successful reality format adaptations in Canadian broadcasting history.
DREAM FUNDED: LET THE CROWD DECIDE is produced by CTV in association with Entertainment One (eOne), UAMG, and Highway Entertainment. eOne's Margaret O'Brien and Loren Mawhinney serve as executive producers as well as Stuart Coxe who is also showrunner; Scot Cru, Dan Munday and Jim Roush are executive producers for United Artists Media Group; and Adam Ivers is executive producer for Highway Entertainment. For Bell Media, Robin Johnston is Production Executive. Corrie Coe is Senior Vice-President, Independent Production. Mike Cosentino is Senior Vice-President, Programming, CTV Networks. Phil King is President - CTV, Sports, and Entertainment Programming.
About Mark Burnett
Mark Burnett, Chief Executive Officer of the United Artists Media Group (an MGM company), is a six-time Emmy Award winner. Burnett has produced more than 2,900 hours of television programming, which regularly airs in more than 70 countries worldwide. The company Burnett leads, United Artist Media Group (UAMG), currently has network series including SURVIVOR (CBS), THE VOICE (NBC), CELEBRITY APPRENTICE (NBC), and SHARK TANK (ABC). Burnett is one of very few producers to have had a renewed series on each of the four major networks and to have multiple series win their time slots on five nights of television in the same week.
Additionally, Burnett and his wife Roma Downey have produced (under UAMG's LightWorkers Media banner) the 10-hour miniseries THE BIBLE that premiered on History Channel in March 2013 and the 2014 feature film Son of God (20th Century Fox). They are currently in production on "A.D." (NBC) and THE DOVEKEEPERS (CBS), both scheduled to premiere in 2015. They are also in pre-production on the feature film Ben Hur with Paramount and MGM, set to be released in 2016.
Mark's television profile includes a strong presence in award show franchises, having produced the MTV MOVIE AWARDS from 2007 to 2011, the VIDEO GAME AWARDS, and the 2011 PRIMETIME EMMY AWARDS. Burnett and UAMG are set to produce the 2015 PEOPLE'S CHOICE AWARDS, which Burnett has produced since 2010.
Time magazine named Mr. Burnett one of the world's most influential people. He has won BRANDWEEK'S Marketer of the Year Award, The Brandon Tartikoff Legacy Award, the PGA Norman Lear Award and the prestigious ROSE D'OR FRAPA Format Award. Burnett was inducted into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame in 2010 and was honoured with a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame. He served two elected terms on the Board of Directors for the British Academy of Film and Television Arts in Los Angeles. Burnett became CEO of United Artists Media Group in 2014.
About United Artists Media Group
United Artists Media Group (UAMG) is a joint venture among MGM, Mark Burnett, Roma Downey and Hearst Corporation, focused on developing, producing and financing premium content across all platforms, including scripted and non-scripted television programs, motion pictures and digital content.
About Entertainment One (eOne):
Entertainment One Ltd. (LSE:ETO) is a leading international entertainment company that specializes in the acquisition, production and distribution of film and television content. The company's comprehensive network extends around the globe including Canada, the U.S., the UK, Ireland, Spain, Benelux, France, Germany, Scandinavia, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and South Korea. Through established Film and Television divisions, the company provides extensive expertise in film distribution, television and music production, family programming, merchandising and licensing, and digital content. Its current rights library is exploited across all media formats and includes more than 40,000 film and television titles, 4,500 hours of television programming and 45,000 music tracks.
About Highway Entertainment
Highway Entertainment is a division of Omnicom Media Group, and was founded in 1996 to create program funding opportunities. Highway Entertainment operates in the areas of program development, financing, production and distribution.
About Omnicom Media Group
Omnicom Media Group (OMG) is the media services division of Omnicom Group Inc. (NYSE: OMC), the leading global advertising, marketing and corporate communications company, providing services to over 5,000 clients in more than 100 countries. Omnicom Media Group includes the full service media networks OMD and PHD as well as a number of specialty media communications companies.
About Bell Media Independent Production
Bell Media has commissioned some of Canada's most-watched and most-acclaimed original programming, working with the best Canadian independent producers in the country. Hit CTV series include ratings success stories SAVING HOPE, MOTIVE, the record-breaking THE AMAZING RACE CANADA, and MASTERCHEF CANADA. Among the scripted series on Bell Media pay and specialty channels are the three-time Emmy®-nominated hit DEGRASSI, the internationally acclaimed ORPHAN BLACK, the most-watched original series in Space history BITTEN, Bravo's most-watched new drama 19-2, TRANSPORTER – THE SERIES, dramedy SENSITIVE SKIN, and the upcoming KILLJOYS. Bell Media specialty channels are also home to hit factual series HIGHWAY THRU HELL, COLD WATER COWBOYS, and CANADA'S WORST DRIVER, among others.
CTV is Canada's #1 private broadcaster. Featuring a wide range of quality news, sports, information, and entertainment programming, CTV has been Canada's most-watched television network for the past 13 years in a row. CTV is a division of Bell Media, Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio, digital, and Out-of-Home. Bell Media is owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada's largest communications company. More information about CTV can be found on the network's website at CTV.ca.
For further information: Amy Doary, Unit Publicist, DREAM FUNDED: LET THE CROWD DECIDE, 416.710.6079 or [email protected]; Jacqui VanSickle, CTV Networks, 416.384.5091 or [email protected]; Allie Page, CTV Networks, 416.384.4596 or [email protected]