TV company pacts with digital studio
Granada America (“Hell’s Kitchen”) has acquired a stake in Electric Farm Entertainment, the digital studio behind the upcoming Rosario Dawson sci-fi short “Gemini Division.”Move comes as Granada America parent ITV continues to expand its U.S. operations. The U.K. conglom recently sealed a programming and production deal with 20th Century Fox TV as well. By pacting with Electric Farm, Granada America looks to be more actively involved in creating new-media projects and also migrate more online content to TV. “Electric Farm has created a very interesting business model,” said Granada America prexy-CEO Paul Buccieri. “They’re generating significant revenues through just this digital application; that’s what intrigued me initially.” In the case of Electric Farm, besides “Gemini Division,” the company is also behind the Internet comedy “Woke Up Dead,” starring Jon Heder. Electric Farm was formed by longtime Hollywood exec Jeff Sagansky, along with producer Stan Rogow (“Lizzie McGuire”) and scribe Brent Friedman (“Mortal Kombat: Annihilation”). “We felt the things that we were doing would be a good complement to where ITV and Granada America were going,” Rogow said. “We make money, which is probably one of the things that made us attractive to Granada. We were not just some company making a business plan in search of reality.” Rogow said Electric Farm has been able to generate revenue by working with brands and also pacting with Sony Pictures TV Intl. to distribute its first few projects globally. Back in the U.S., NBC Universal’s digital studio is distributing “Gemini Division,” which will launch later this summer. The star power “puts us in a different category in terms of what most people are making,” Rogow said. “We spend a lot more money on it and hopefully it shows onscreen. We incorporate movie stars into our productions.” Granada America is also behind the series “Nanny 911,” “Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares” and “Celebrity Fit Club.”
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