Former Gogglebox Entertainment Founders to Create and Produce Unscripted Programs for Global Marketplace
SANTA MONICA, Calif. and LONDON, July 13, 2016 /CNW/ -- Building on its unscripted portfolio, Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), a premier next generation global content leader, announced today that it has acquired a stake in Primal Media, the new production company formed by Gogglebox founders, format creators and executive producers Mat Steiner and Adam Wood. Primal Media will develop and produce unscripted programs in the UK, as well as work with Lionsgate's alternative programming team in the U.S. to produce U.S. formats for the UK market. Lionsgate will distribute Primal Media's content worldwide and will produce formats owned by Primal Media for the U.S. and worldwide market.
Steiner and Wood's extensive credits include UK formats Release The Hounds (ITV2), Cash Cab (ITV), The Code (BBC1), Playing It Straight (C4), Man v Fly (GSN/The Sun), Plain Jane (MTV International), Singing In The Rainforest (Watch), Move Like Michael Jackson (BBC3), The Exit List (ITV) and Breakaway (BBC2), among many others. Their formats have sold across the world, amassing over 15,000 episodes and winning multiple awards, including six Emmys and, in 2016, a Royal Television Society Award for Best Entertainment.
Primal Media has already secured its first two commissions with the return of the award-winning, third season of Release The Hounds and a second season of The Code (BBC1), both for 2017.
The acquisition marks another step in Lionsgate's continued growth into unscripted programming around the world. In the past year, the Company has formed a strategic alliance with leading U.S. reality producer Pilgrim Studios and has developed a growing in-house slate from its alternative programming division, including Kicking & Screaming (Fox), Revenge Body with Khloe Kardashian (E!), Monica the Medium (Freeform), Douglas Family Gold (Oxygen), Tracks (Spike), and many more.
"As Lionsgate's Television Group expands its capabilities in the unscripted market, Mat and Adam are the perfect addition to our growing family of first-rate reality companies and best-in-class producers who are developing formats with global reach," said Lionsgate Television Group Chairman Kevin Beggs. "The deal is a win-win as it provides Mat and Adam the support they need to grow Primal Media while enabling Lionsgate to enhance our footprint in the UK, to expand the pipeline for our U.S. business and to access a fabulous library of product that can be distributed worldwide."
"We have a lot of respect for Mat and Adam, who are among the most prolific and successful unscripted producers in the UK," said Lionsgate UK Chief Executive Officer Zygi Kamasa. "As we grow the Lionsgate UK presence in television, we are very pleased to bring in such a well respected and talented team as the one at Primal Media."
"We are very excited to be working with Kevin, Zygi and the entire Lionsgate team, both in the UK and the U.S.," said Steiner and Wood. "While Lionsgate is a global player in the television space, it continues to have an entrepreneurial spirit that aligns perfectly with what we are trying to accomplish as we develop Primal Media into a major player creating both entertainment and factual entertainment formats with global appeal."
The deal was negotiated by Laura Kennedy, Executive Vice President, TV Operations & Corporate Development for Lionsgate, Alexandra Keen, Executive Vice President, Business & Legal Affairs, Lionsgate UK, and Malcolm Murray, Lucy Strauss and Jeremy Gawade at Lee & Thompson (representing Lionsgate) and Michael Brader and Medwyn Jones at Wiggin (representing Primal Media).
Lionsgate is a premier next generation global content leader with a diversified presence in motion picture production and distribution, television programming and syndication, home entertainment, international distribution and sales, branded channel platforms, interactive ventures and games, and location-based entertainment. The Company has nearly 80 television shows on 40 different networks spanning its primetime production, distribution and syndication businesses. These include the critically-acclaimed hit series Orange is the New Black, the beloved drama series Nashville, the syndication successes The Wendy Williams Show and Celebrity Name Game (with FremantleMedia), the breakout series The Royals and the Golden Globe-nominated dramedy Casual.
The Company's feature film business spans eight labels and includes the blockbuster Hunger Games franchise, the Now You See Me, Divergent and John Wick series, Sicario, The Age of Adaline, Roadside Attractions' Love & Mercy and Mr. Holmes, Codeblack Films' Addicted and breakout concert film Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain and Pantelion Films' Instructions Not Included, the highest-grossing Spanish-language film ever released in the U.S.
Lionsgate's home entertainment business is an industry leader in box office-to-DVD and box office-to-VOD revenue conversion rates. Lionsgate handles a prestigious and prolific library of approximately 16,000 motion picture and television titles that is an important source of recurring revenue and serves as a foundation for the growth of the Company's core businesses. The Lionsgate and Summit brands remain synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the world. www.lionsgate.com
About Lionsgate UK
Lionsgate UK is the diversified UK-based filmed entertainment arm of Lionsgate (NYSE:LGF), the leading independent filmed entertainment studio. The company (formerly Redbus Film Distributors) was acquired by Lionsgate in October 2005 and has since established a reputation in the U.K. as a leading producer and distributor and acquirer of commercially successful and critically acclaimed product, recently releasing crowd pleaser Eddie The Eagle, the multi award winning Brooklyn, the BAFTA Nominated Sicario, and blockbuster London Has Fallen. Upcoming titles for the 2016 slate include Noel Clarke's Brotherhood, Peter Berg's Deepwater Horizon and Damien Chazelle's La La Land.
Joanna Dodd Massey