Spyglass spiesTV prospects

Company looks to 'cross-pollinate' film, TV

Spyglass Entertainment is launching a small-screen division, promoting Megan Wolpert to serve as senior VP of the unit.

Like its Disney-based feature sibling, Spyglass Entertainment Television will focus on high-end series and telepic projects with broad appeal. Wolpert will oversee development and production of all Spyglass TV projects, reporting to Spyglass co-chairmen-CEOs Roger Birnbaum and Gary Barber.

Spyglass is producing the ABC midseason drama “Miracles” and also has projects in the works at CBS and Showtime.

“Television is very important to us; we’re very serious about being in this business,” Birnbaum said. “It’s a natural outgrowth of our desire to build a company that’s involved in all areas of entertainment.”

Barber said that as a “content company,” it was important for Spyglass to “add this layer in a conservative” fashion. He also said he wants to build Spyglass as a quality brand.

Unlike its Disney-based feature cousin, Spyglass Entertainment TV won’t be based at a particular studio.

“We look forward to doing a lot of business (with ABC), but we want to work with all the studios and networks in town,” Birnbaum said.

Barber and Birnbaum believe their company’s expertise at creating features — including “The Sixth Sense,” “The Count of Monte Cristo,” “Shanghai Noon” and “Reign of Fire” — will prove to be valuable as webs continue to seek feature-quality content.

“Because we’re prolific filmmakers, we have a lot of relationships in the film business,” Birnbaum said. “We’re going to look to cross-pollinate a lot and bring those relationships to television.”

Indeed, “Miracles” started out as feature script that Spyglass then turned into a TV series.

As for Wolpert, exec has been VP of production for Spyglass since 2000, co-producing upcoming Al Pacino starrer “The Recruit.” She was also exec in charge of production for “Out Cold” and will co-produce the upcoming “It Feels Like the First Time.”

In addition to “Miracles,” Spyglass is developing the reality skein “Out of the Shadows” for CBS. Docu-style skein, from creators Jeff Harmon and Carl Colby, will look at various covert operations.

Spyglass also has backdoor pilot “The Ranch” in the works at Showtime. Pic is set at a fictional Nevada brothel.