Former IFC head of original programming Debbie DeMontreux has joined Michael Davies’ Sony TV-owned production company Embassy Row as SVP of Development & Programming. DeMontreux, who is starting this month, will oversee development of new projects as well as all programming currently in production. DeMonreux spent 25 years at AMC Networks, most recently as SVP of Original Programming at IFC for the last 7 years, until resigning at the end of last year. Under her watch, IFC launched its flagship comedy series, Portlandia, as well as Comedy Bang! Bang!, Maron, sketch comedy The Birthday Boys, executive produced by Bob Odenkirk and Ben Stiller; and Will Ferrell’s miniseries The Spoils of Babylon.
IFC has unveiled a slate of new and returning comedy projects, along with projects in development, ahead of its upfront tonight in New York. New programming for 2015 includes American Documentary (working title), a docu-parody created by Saturday Night Live vets Fred Armisen, Bill Hader and Seth Meyers; and American Storage (working title), a scripted half-hour comedy starring Rob Huebel (Childrens Hospital, Human Giant). IFC is also collaborating with CollegeHumor on the first-ever Comedy Music Awards, a satire of traditional awards shows incorporating the best of the comedy and music worlds. Returning for an expanded fourth season is Comedy Bang! Bang! hosted by Scott Aukerman (Between Two Ferns With Zach Galifianakis), and a sophomore season of its original sketch comedy The Birthday Boys, executive produced by Bob Odenkirk (Breaking Bad) and Ben Stiller, featuring the LA comedy troupe of the same name. IFC is also currently developing Westside from Joel McHale (Community), and The Bank from Teri Weinberg (Ugly Betty). The slate comes out a week after Pete Aronson was tapped as IFC’s new head of original programming. Here is the full list:
IFC has promoted Blake Callaway to the newly created position of EVP of marketing and digital media. Formerly SVP of marketing, Callaway will oversee all aspects of IFC’s marketing efforts including consumer and industry campaigns, on-and-off-air creative, digital media, and integrated …
At some point before comedies like Portlandia, Maron and Comedy Bang! Bang! made their way to the network, it was knows as Independent Film Channel (IFC for short). During the TCA press tour today, president and GM Jennifer Caserta made the name-shortening …
IFC’s new parody of epic TV miniseries, The Spoils Of Babylon, From Funny or Die, boasts a boatload of Saturday Night Live alums behind and in front of the camera: Will Ferrell, Kristen Wiig, Matt Piedmont, Andrew Steele, etc. Six, half-hour episodes will premiere on IFC in early 2014. Not surprisingly, the SNL alums got asked, during Winter TV Press Tour 2014, to weigh in on the controversy that erupted this season over the lack of black female cast member on the NBC late-night series. In response to the controversy, Lorne Michaels in the past several days has hired not only a black comedienne for the cast, but also two black female writers.
“If you can give little insight, was this ever really anything? And is this ultimately good for the show, and what it means,” one critic asked the Spoils panel, a little unclearly.
EXCLUSIVE: IFC‘s SVP Original Programming Debbie DeMontreux has resigned. Her last day is today, and a search is underway for a replacement. “After 25 years with the company, Debbie DeMontreux has decided to leave to pursue new opportunities,” IFC said in a statement to Deadline. “She has made a significant contribution to the success of IFC and we wish her all the best.” DeMontreux oversaw the development and production of IFC’s original series, including Portlandia; Comedy Bang! Bang!; Out There; Maron; R. Kelly’s hip-hop opera Trapped In The Closet, which is returning for a new installment; as well as the upcoming limited series The Spoils Of Babylon, from Funny or Die and Will Ferrell, and sketch comedy series The Birthday Boys, produced by Ben Stiller and Bob Odenkirk. While several IFC shows have achieved cult status and Portlandia has been raking in awards nominations, the network is yet to reach a wider audience the way its sibling AMC has — something the network is hoping for with the high-profile and star-studded The Spoils Of Babylon.
IFC Films acquired North American rights to the Zach Clark-directed comedy White Reindeer, which stars Anna Margaret Hollyman, Laura Lemar-Goldsborough, Lydia Johnson, Joe Swanberg and Chris Doubek. Clark, who wrote the script, produced with Daryl Pittman and Melodie Sisk, Kevin Clark and Joan Peacock are exec producers. The film will …
UPDATE 8:20 AM: IFC made a couple more programming announcements this morning. The network has greenlighted Garfunkel & Oates, a 10-episode half-hour featuring the female comedy-folk duo Riki Lindhome (Garfunkel) and Kate Micucci (Oates), for a 2014 premiere. It will spotlight the personal and professional lives of the duo whose career choices – singing satirical and sometimes dirty songs — leaves them with little in common with their peers, and no one but each other to turn to for support and understanding. The series is produced by Abominable Pictures and executive produced by Lindhome, Micucci and Jonathan Stern (Childrens Hospital). Additionally, IFC has entered into a first-look deal with the new television division of podcast network Earwolf and is currently developing The Embassy. It stars comedian and podcast regular James Adomian (Childrens Hospital) who will play multiple characters, and is being co-written by Adomian and Scott Aukerman (Comedy Bang! Bang!). Set in the Washington D.C. embassy of the fictional nation of Costa Verde, the series follows a controversial hacktivist as he seeks asylum, with his public antics putting the small country on the world’s radar for the first time. IFC also is developing a comedy project with writer/producer Rolin Jones (Friday Night Lights).
When it comes to this year’s Foreign Language Film Oscar race, it seems Sundance Selects just can’t catch a break. Coming out of Cannes, the company headed by Jonathan Sehring — who also runs IFC — looked like it easily could have two of the five nominees in the category, especially after its acquisitions took two of the top three prizes at Cannes. The French sensation Blue Is The Warmest Color won the coveted Palme d’Or (usually a key factor in considering a film for Oscar submission), while the Jury Prize (essentially third place) went to Japan’s moving and extremely well-received Like Father, Like Son, which so infatuated Cannes Jury President Steven Spielberg that his DreamWorks is negotiating for an English-language remake.
It seemed at the time that both would be a cinch as their respective countries’ entry in the race, and Sundance Selects was riding high. But as Deadline reported in July, a quirky Academy rule that requires a foreign entry to have opened by September 30 in its country of origin KO’d Warmest Color’s chances, despite Sehring’s best efforts to turn it around. Unfortunately Wild Bunch, the film’s French distributor, was dead set on releasing it October 9, and a qualifying run was ruled out. Now, in what for me is an even more stunning setback, the seven-member Japan Movie Producers Association ignored its country’s high-profile Cannes winner and instead chose a more obscure film, The Great Passage (Fune O Amu) from 30-year-old director Yuya Ishii, the youngest ever to represent Japan in the Oscar contest. That film was released in April — doing nice, if unremarkable, business at the box office. Like Father, Like Son is scheduled for a September 28 release in Japan, a date presumably chosen to make it eligible for the Oscar race. But it’s not to be.
IFC has ordered a second season of comedy series Maron from Fox Television Studios. The 13-episode season will debut next year. Marc Maron exec produces, writes and stars. Here’s IFC’s announcement:
NEW YORK, NY –July 23, 2013 – Boomer lives! And so does Maron on IFC. The network announced today the renewal of the critically acclaimed comedy series Maron for a second season with 13 all new half-hour episodes, up from 10, scheduled to premiere in 2014.
“In many ways, Marc is a perfect representation of IFC and our approach to comedy,” said Jennifer Caserta, president and general manager of IFC. “He also seems to be in need of a less dysfunctional family, so we’re happy he’s returning to ours for an expanded second season.”
We already scooped the some of the top castings in The Spoils Of Babylon, IFC’s six-episode epic miniseries spoof produced by Ferrell and Adam McKay’s Funny Or Die, including Tobey Maguire, Kristen Wiig and Haley Joel Osment. Now IFC has officially unveiled the cast of the project, which also includes Jessica Alba, Val Kilmer, Michael Sheen and Tim Robbins, as well as more details about the mini. Here is the release: