Shine International has taken on international distribution for ITV’s Code Of A Killer and Channel 5’s Rome: The World’s First Superpower. The former, produced by World Productions, tells the true story of Alec Jeffreys’ discovery of DNA fingerprinting in the 1980s and its first use by detective David Baker (played by David Threlfall) in solving a double murder only three miles from Jeffreys’ lab. James Strong (Broadchurch/Gracepoint) is set to direct the two-part drama, which shoots in September. Rome: The World’s First Superpower is co-produced by 360Production and GroupM Entertainment. It looks at the major heroes and villains from Hannibal and Julius Caesar to Spartacus and Cleopatra and tells the story of how one small city among many conquered the world and then ran it for nearly 1,000 years.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Shine Cracks ‘Code Of A Killer’; CBS, M6 Extend Partnership; Dogwoof Bites ‘The Overnighters’; More
Global Showbiz Briefs: Shine International Preps Branded On-Demand Channel; ‘Small Time Gangster’ Heads To Romania; More
Shine International Launching Branded On-Demand Channel
In a first for Shine International, the sales and distribution division of Shine Group is launching a branded on-demand streaming channel. Initially going out in the U.S. via Roku, the channel will offer more than 200 hours of multi-genre programming including The School, Got To Dance, The Magicians, Eternal Law and The Sandhamn Murders. Content is available for free with advertising, or can be rented ad-free.
‘Small Time Gangster’ Heads To Romania As ‘Umbre’
HBO Europe will start production next month in Romania on Umbre, a local version of Australian series Small Time Gangster. The eight-parter is set to air on HBO Romania in early 2015, Film News Europe reports. The dark comedy follows a taxi driver whose side job is working for a Bucharest mobster. After he accidentally kills someone, he can’t extricate himself from the mob. Igor Cobileanski (The Unsaved) is directing from a script by Bogdan Mirica. The original aired on SBS in 2013 and is distributed internationally by DRG Formats.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Shine International Brings Digital Business In-House; Miso Film Orders Crime Drama ‘Acquitted’; More
Shine International Taps Kerry Ball As SVP Digital Business Development
Shine International, the sales and distribution arm of Elisabeth Murdoch’s Shine Group, is bringing its digital business in-house. The indie has appointed Kerry Ball to the newly created post of SVP Digital Business Development. Ball will lead digital sales strategy and manage day-to-day sales to digital and home entertainment platforms for Shine International represented properties. Prior to Ball’s appointment, the business was managed on a consultancy basis by Gordon Synn, who brokered VOD deals of The Hour to Amazon, multi-title agreements with Netflix, library deals with Hulu and an output partnership with China’s Youku Tudou. Synn will hand over to Ball when she takes over later this month. Ball will be based in London. She joins from Canada’s Stingray Digital, where she was VP for Europe. Prior to Stingray, she spent eight years at NBCUniversal. Shine International properties include The Bridge, Broadchurch, The Face and MasterChef.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Netflix Execs Headed Back To France For Expansion Talks; Patrick Malone Joins Goldcrest Post; More
Netflix Execs Headed Back To France For More Expansion Talks
Last week, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings said the company was eyeing “substantial” European expansion in 2014. His comments came a little more than a month after execs from the streaming service met with staff of French President François Hollande to discuss an entry into France. According to local media reports, Netflix execs now are due to return to France to meet with industry folk within the next week. Pascal Rogard, head of authors’ rights group the SACD, told Le Figaro that the situation is coming into focus with a possible launch later this year. Netflix is available in 41 countries including France’s neighbors to the north such as the UK, the Netherlands and the Nordic region. A French launch has been rumored over the years, but moving into the fiercely protected territory is ornery in part due to a complex film-windows chronology that prohibits movies from appearing on monthly SVOD services until three years after a theatrical release. There is no such protection for TV series, but Netflix’s House Of Cards already airs on local pay-TV leader Canal Plus, which would see the service’s arrival as competition. In a conversation with analysts, Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos was asked last week whether the service would be out of certain markets with its key originals because it had already sold them to local providers. “It depends,” he said. “There’s multiple windows, and we’ll continue to have those negotiations as we get closer to those launches.” It’s expected that should Netflix enter France, it would have to adhere to obligations to invest in local content. Culture Minister Aurélie Filippetti told Le Journal du Dimanche this weekend, “Netflix should be an additional player, not a stowaway.” It’s also believed that Netflix is eyeing a move into Germany. With regard to expansion, MoffettNathanson Research’s Michael Nathanson said last week that “it remains difficult to figure out the ultimate size and value of Netflix’s international opportunity” due to the company’s “undisclosed new market entries, minimal transparency and continual reinvestment.”
Under the first-look development and distribution deal, Shine International will represent tape and format rights for new television output from 44 Blue Productions. The pact was brokered by Rasha Drachkovitch, President of 44 Blue, Stephanie Drachkovitch, EVP and Co-Owner of 44 Blue, and Tania Jacobson, SVP Sales and Acquisitions, Americas. Deal takes effect immediately. 44 Blue’s slate includes Wahlburgers on A&E, Lockup franchise reality series on MSNBC, Pit Bulls & Parolees (Animal Planet), Split Ends (Style) and Married To The Army: Alaska. Shine International’s third-party titles include 24 Hours In A&E , Anything Goes, Killers Behind Bars, Hoarding: Buried Alive and The School. Scripted includes Archer, In The Flesh, Real Humans and The Listener.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Ecosse Films Inks 3-Year Deal With Shine International; Film4′s Katherine Butler Headed To UK’s Raw; More
Ecosse Films Inks First-Look Deal With Shine International
The UK’s Ecosse Films has pacted with Elisabeth Murdoch’s Shine International in a three-year, first-look deal that will see the latter handle the producer’s TV sales and distribution. Ecosse’s TV credits include three seasons of Mistresses for BBC One (the U.S. remake was recently renewed for a second season by ABC); Life Of Crime for ITV and biopic Fleming for Sky Atlantic HD. Ecosse also has feature credits that include Diana, Becoming Jane and Nowhere Boy. Shine will rep finished tape and format rights for Ecosse Films’ new television output from January 1 onward.
Katherine Butler Leaving Film4 For UK Producer Raw
Film4 Deputy Head of Film Katherine Butler is leaving to join UK producer Raw. She will head up the film and TV drama division. Traditionally a factual producer, Raw launched a film and drama wing in 2012. Its series include Gold Rush for the Discovery Channel, Locked Up Abroad for National Geographic, and Paranormal Witness for Syfy. On the drama side, Raw has five projects in development with Film4, including Bart Layton’s American Animals. While at Film4, Butler executive produced numerous titles including Paddy Considine’s Tyrannosaur, Ben Wheatley’s Sightseers, Peter Strickland’s Berberian Sound Studio, and Clio Bernard’s BAFTA-nominated The Selfish Giant. Raw and Film4 maintain strong ties.
Global Showbiz Briefs: BSkyB Opens Sky Store To Nonsubscribers; Netflix Eyeing France Launch?; More;
BSkyB Opens Its Sky Store Rentals To All Broadband Users
BSkyB set a challenge today to streaming providers in the UK such as Netflix and LoveFilm by announcing it has opened its Sky Store movie rental service to anyone with a broadband connection. The service does not require a Sky subscription, meaning all users in the UK and the Republic of Ireland will have access. Sky, which is controlled by 21st Century Fox, says new films including Man Of Steel and Despicable Me 2 are available from today with other fresh titles available at the same time as they drop on DVD. Those will rent for £3.49 ($5.70) each. Library titles will go for 99p-£1.99. There are already about 1,200 movies online which can be streamed through SkyStore.com, or via NOW TV, Roku and YouView. Sky’s had success with renting movies to its existing customers with 2.1 million rentals in the third quarter.
Report: Netflix Mulls Expansion Into France
Netflix has been a long time coming to France, Europe’s third-largest market, but is the tide about to turn? According to Reuters, executives from Netflix met with the staff of French President François Hollande this week to discuss the move. Netflix is available in 41 countries including France’s neighbors to the north such as the UK, the Netherlands and the Nordic region. A French launch has been rumored over the years, but moving into the fiercely protected territory is ornery for the streaming service given a complex film-windows chronology. There is no such protection for TV series, but many U.S. shows air as much as a year later than they do in the U.S. on traditional networks like TF1. TF1 has a VOD service that offers first-run U.S. series on a one-day delay and pay-TV leader Canal Plus airs first-run series within a few days; it even launched a new channel this year on which to showcase them. But movies are hampered by rules that prohibit films from appearing on monthly SVOD services until three years after a theatrical release. Rentals via a set-top box are permissible four months after theatrical. The windows issue has long been a thorny one in France, with industry opinions divided, but discussions are ongoing. A Hollande rep told Reuters, “Netflix wanted information about the legal conditions that would affect its potential arrival in France.”
EXCLUSIVE: Shine International has closed a deal with PBS on Will & Grace exec producer Gary Janetti’s British sitcom Vicious. The public broadcaster will air Vicious in the U.S. next year. The initial six-part series premiered on ITV in April and at the time was the highest-rated comedy launch on any UK channel in 2013. It went on to hold an average of about 3.4M viewers. Veteran British thesps Ian McKellen and Derek Jacobi play a constantly bickering couple who’ve lived together in a small Covent Garden flat for nearly 50 years. But underneath all their vicious co-dependent fighting, they deeply love each other. Harry Potter‘s Frances de la Tour and Game Of Thrones‘ Iwan Rheon also star. The show was given a second-season order by ITV in August and Shine America has been exploring a U.S. version. Vicious is a Brown Eyed Boy production in association with Shine’s Kudos and Nickelby Inc. The deal was brokered by Matt Vassallo, Bill Gardner, and Jack Dougherty on behalf of PBS.
Six New International Deals For UK’s Drama ‘Broadchurch’
Shine International said Wednesday that it has made a half-dozen more deals for Broadchurch, the UK’s most-watched new drama: Channel One (Russia), France 2, NRK (Norway), OnDirecTV (DirecTV Latin America), ProSiebenSat.1 Media AG (Germany) and TV4 (Sweden). The deals bring Broadchurch into 32 territories worldwide, including ABC Australia and BBC America, Broadchurch premiered Wednesday night. Also, Fox said at TCA last week that it is adapting the show as one of its new “event series”. The eight-part UK series, starring David Tennant and Olivia Colman, was created and written by Chris Chibnall. It’s set in a quiet seaside town following the murder of a young boy and focuses on the impact the crime has on the community when everyone becomes a suspect.
Icon Taps Roadshow Films NZ As Its New Zealand Distributor
Icon Film Distribution said Wednesday that it has chosen Roadshow Films NZ as its new theatrical distribution partner in New Zealand. The deal, which begins in November, represents an extension of home entertainment distribution relationship between the two companies. Among the first Icon titles distributed by Roadshow in the territory will be Filth and Ender’s Game. Icon had been partnered with Studio Canal in New Zealand.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Shine Int’l Makes CEO Permanent; New Download/Streaming Service Headed For UK
Shine International Takes Interim Tag Off Nohr
More than eight months after Nadine Nohr stepped in as interim CEO at Shine International, the company has made her gig permanent. Two years ago, the exec supervised the unit’s revamp and relocation. She began as a consultant to Shine International, the sales and distribution arm of the Shine Group, in 2011. Her resume includes a dozen years at Granada International.
Aussie Comedy Creators Sign With Gersh
Trent O’Donnell and Phil Lloyd, who created Australian TV comedy Review With Myles Barlow, have signed with the Gersh Agency just as the show’s U.S. adaptation, Review With Forrest MacNeil, goes into production for Comedy Central. O’Donnell is a writer-director and Lloyd is a writer-actor who played the lead in Review with Myles Barlow. O’Donnell says he and Lloyd plan to travel to the U.S. early next year to look for opportunities as creators-showrunners. The pair, who are partners in Australian production company Jungleboys, also created A Moody Christmas, a comedy series for Australia’s ABC-TV in which each of the six episodes focuses on the dysfunctional Moody family on Christmas Day one year apart. DCD Rights is the international distributor of A Moody Christmas.
With a month to go before the Mipcom TV market kicks off in Cannes, Shine International is undergoing a shift at the top of its ranks. Camilla Hammer, CEO of the sales and distribution arm of Elisabeth Murdoch’s Shine Group, is leaving the company after less than a year in the job. “Personal reasons” were cited as the motivation for her departure. Well-known industry vet Nadine Nohr is stepping in to replace Hammer on an interim basis starting next week. Nohr, who was managing director of Granada International for 12 years, has been acting as a consultant to Shine since 2009. She’ll take up the interim CEO role on a one-year contract. Shine International’s catalogue includes about 3,000 hours of content. Among its best known properties are The Biggest Loser, One Born Every Minute and MasterChef. It also handles dramas including the upcoming Frank Spotnitz-created series The Hunted which Cinemax starts airing in October.
14 May 2012 – ITV Studios Global Entertainment (ITVS GE) has today announced that Ruth Clarke has been appointed Director of Acquisitions and Co-Productions. Ruth joins the company from Shine International, where she is SVP, Head of EMEA.
Reporting to Maria Kyriacou, Managing Director of ITVS GE, Ruth will be responsible for overseeing ITVS GE’s acquisition and co-production strategy, contributing to international growth through partnerships with ITV Studios and external producers worldwide.
Continuing to round up the old troops, Ben Silverman’s IAC-owned multimedia studio Electus has named John Pollak president of the newly-formed Electus International. The former EVP of Shine International worked with Silverman and Electus CEO Chris Grant at Reveille to launch Reveille International which later became Shine International. At Electus, Pollak is overseeing the international strategy and execution for the group’s content labels. He is responsible for the distribution of Electus’ programming as well as 3rd party programs and formats. Said Grant: “Similar to the early days at Reveille, we are implementing a strategy to deliver the greatest possible revenue to our creative partners. We will not force our content through any one specific partner around the globe. For that reason, it is essential that we have the best sales team and the best leader for that team. I am thrilled that John Pollak is joining us as President of Electus International. John is, without a doubt, the right person for this job.” At Shine, Pollak drove sales for such non-scripted formats as Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?, The Biggest Loser, American Gladiators and MasterChef. At Electus, he will continue the international expansion initiated by the partnership between Electus and Chris Philip’s production and distribution company Engine Entertainment. Philip will remain president of Engine and will spearhead a new global scripted production initiative.
LONDON, December 14th 2011 – Shine Group today announced the appointment of Modern Times Group (MTG) executive Camilla Hammer to CEO of its sales and distribution division Shine International. The appointment follows the recent relocation of Shine International from LA to London, where Hammer will be based and lead an international team of 42. In her new role, she will be responsible for the exploitation of worldwide intellectual property rights from both the Shine Group and independent producers and networks through formats and tape sales. Reporting to Shine Group President Alex Mahon, she will commence her new role in early 2012. Camilla Hammer is joining Shine Group from Modern Times Group (MTG) where she was SVP Acquisitions.
MIPCOM Briefs: ITV Sells NBC’s ‘Prime Suspect’ To 30 Territories; Overseas Buyers Get ‘Happily Divorced’
The international TV market got underway in Cannes this morning with a flurry of announcements. Here are a few titbits:
– ITV Studios Global Entertainment, the TV distribution arm of the Brit broadcaster, has sold the new NBC version of Prime Suspect to over 30 territories worldwide. This is despite the show teetering on the verge of cancellation in the U.S. ITV, which co-produced the remake with Universal Media Studios, has licensed the Maria Bello vehicle to broadcasters including Nine (Australia), TVNZ (New Zealand) and TV3 (Ireland). Prime Suspect drew an underwhelming 1.5 18-49 rating in its second week on NBC. My colleague Nellie Andreeva reports that NBC’s chief Bob Greenblatt is willing to give the struggling show, which got mostly positive reviews, a bit more time.
– Meanwhile Shine International, the TV distribution arm of News Corp’s Shine Group, has licensed more than 200 hours of programming to Discovery Networks Latin America/US Hispanic. It’s the biggest commission Shine has brokered with DLA/USH to date, and includes cooking competition show MasterChef, game show The Biggest Loser, and unscripted format One Born Every Minute.
The last of Ben Silverman’s three musketeers who launched Reveille with him is leaving parent company Shine Group. Chris Grant, who has served as president of sales and distribution arm Shine International since Shine’s 2008 acquisition of Reveille, will depart later this year, along with his top lieutenant, EVP John Pollak. The move is a result of News Corp-owned Shine Group’s decision to relocate the headquarters of its sales and distribution unit to London, where Shine’s main offices are, from Los Angeles. Grant, who has chosen not to relocate, will work through a six-month transitional period and help in the search for a London-based successor. Shine Group President Alex Mahon will be taking oversight of Shine International in the interim. ”At this stage of the company’s growth, Shine International needs its headquarters alongside our teams that manage and exploit group formats, brands and digital rights, with local sales experts in our global production centres of excellence,” Mahon said.
Shine International will keep a presence in LA with a small office. Pollak will continue in his role as Head of Sales until the end of the year, remaining in the US. SVP Business and Operations Martin Rakusen will relocate to the London office. “I am incredibly proud of the substantial growth that Shine International has achieved since we started the company, and particularly in the last few years since joining the Shine Group,” Grant said. “These changes are absolutely right for the business at this point in its development, however, LA is my home, and rather than relocate, it is also a good time for me to allow my colleagues to build on the success we have, together, created.”
BBC America has come on board to co-produce the new six-part drama series The Hour, announced in November by BBC Two. The series, which will premiere in the summer on BBC America, was created and written by BAFTA-winning Abi Morgan (White Girl). It is a spy thriller set behind the scenes of the BBC’s newsroom in London in the mid 1950s and stars Dominic West (The Wire), Romola Garai (Emma) and Ben Whishaw (Bright Star) locked in a highly competitive, sharp-witted and passionate love triangle. Produced by Kudos and BBC America for the BBC, it is distributed by Shine International, which will take the series to MIPTV next month.
News is coming in from Miami where the National Association of Television Program Executives’ annual confab kicked off today:
Debmar-Mercury is taking Raycom Media and ITV Studios America’s weekend lifestyle newsmagazine America Now and turning it in a daily syndicated strip for a fall 2011 launch. Debmar-Mercury will distribute the show hosted by former Apprentice winner Bill Rancic in association with Bill Marcus’ 30 Steps. America Now, which debuted as a weekly series in October, airs on 43 stations in all 36 Raycom Media markets representing 12.6% of the country, including WOIO in Cleveland, WBTV in Charlotte and WXIX in Cincinnati.
Shine International has inked a development and production pact with Japanese entertainment conglomerate Yoshimoto Kogyo to develop, produce and distribute content for the US, Japanese and international market. Under the deal, Shine Group’s US production company Reveille will partner with Yoshimoto to create original unscripted formats for the United States and Japan, which will be distributed internationally by Shine Int’l. The first project under the pact is Spice of Life. Created and executive produced by actor Masi Oka (Heroes, Hawaii 5-0), it is a variety/reality show featuring five hosts or commentators and a live studio audience, which has already been sold to Japanese broadcaster TBS. Shine Int’l's Chris Grant, Reveille’s Howard T. Owens and Yoshimoto Entertainment’s Aki Yohiro executive produce.