Roger Mincheff, former head of Relativity Media’s digital studio division, has nailed up a new shingle to create entertainment and branded content featuring top Hollywood and Internet-native stars.
Mincheff provided the seed capital to form Big Boots, and said he also has raised “significant money” from a strategic outside investor (which he declined to name). The studio plans to make several intellectual-property acquisitions in the next few months.
Big Boots’ talent-driven productions will be platform specific, according to Mincheff, encompassing technologies designed to reach a mass audience. “When I say a ‘platform,’ it’s an environment that drives engagement,” he said. “It could be as simple as a social-media strategy, a YouTube channel or an app. It’s environments that engage audiences.”
Added Mincheff, “The model that’s developing today is: build a platform, and the community will decide who the winners are.”
Mincheff has recruited Anthony Kaan, former VP of original content of Relativity Digital Studios, as g.m. and head of content programming. The Beverly Hills-based outfit has about 12 employees.
[UPDATE, Feb. 29: Mincheff’s contract with Relativity expired in October 2015. A year prior to that, when Relativity hired Lisa Eisenpresser to take over as head of Relativity Digital Studios, Mincheff no longer had an active role with the company. Eisenpresser left Relativity, which has been in the process of a bankruptcy reorganization, in January.]
Before joining Relativity Media in February 2014, Mincheff was president of Myspace Entertainment after engineering its sale to Specific Media and Justin Timberlake. Time Inc. earlier this month acquired Viant, parent company of Myspace, once a high-flying social media player.
Previously, as SVP of branded entertainment for Fox Filmed Entertainment, Mincheff helped launch Fox Digital Studio and executed projects for brand partners including Taco Bell, Kia and DirecTV. Mincheff’s producer credits include “The Covenant,” Vin Diesel’s “The Ropes” and RDS’ first digital feature film, “Bob Thunder Internet Assassin.”
Kaan, who led development, production and distribution of Relativity Digital Studios’ first slate of original programming, was previously a branded-entertainment executive at Edelman and worked at CAA. “Audience behavior has changed radically – how and where people consume their content is changing at this very moment in ways that will have ripple effects for years to come,” Kaan said.
Big Boots has deals with “A-plus talent,” Mincheff claimed, and is working with yet-to-be-announced media partners across sports, gaming and music. The studio also will work directly with advertisers on branded-content deals.
Big Boots is not angling to be a multichannel network per se, according to Mincheff. “You couldn’t talk about engagement in today’s environment and not understand YouTube channels,” he said. “But we are not an MCN.”