×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Canvas Media Taps TV Vets Sandy Grushow, Lee Rierson, Peter Tortorici for Advisory Board

Digital studio also hires Allison Vanore as head of production, Stephanie Boxerbaum to lead business and legal affairs

Canvas Media Studios has named three TV executives — Sandy Grushow, Lee Rierson, Peter Tortorici — to its advisory board, as the digital-focused media company looks to expand its production slate.

The L.A.-based company, formed in 2015 by Bernie Su and David Tochterman, also announced that has hired Allison Vanore to head production and Stephanie Boxerbaum to lead business and legal affairs.

As members of the advisory board, the trio of execs are receiving equity stakes in Canvas Media Studios (but they are not investors). Grushow is the former chairman of the Fox Television Entertainment Group; Rierson is the former COO of FremantleMedia North America and Shine America; and Tortorici is the former president of CBS Entertainment and ex-CEO of GroupM Entertainment. The company said as advisers they will be identifying new projects and potential business relationships.

Grushow, who now runs media advisory firm Phase 2 Media, said he’s been an admirer of Bernie Su and his breakthrough work in multiplatform storytelling and has known Tochterman for years.

“If this was traditional short-form content, I would have said ‘Thank you,’ and moved on,” Grushow said. “But because of Bernie’s past work it became clear what the company can become. You’ve got a world where obviously young adults are congregating on social networks and an app ecosystem generating tens of billions of dollars – those are areas of interest to me.” Other companies Grushow works with include Shareability, Two Bit Circus, 3BlackDot, and TubiTV.

“Canvas Media Studios is aggressively targeting series franchises with the potential for international distribution across a variety of premium platforms, and we are very fortunate to be able to have Lee Rierson, Sandy Grushow and Peter Tortorici actively involved as Canvas enters into a period of sustained growth,” Tochterman, CEO of Canvas Media Studios, said in a statement. “Their guidance and business acumen will prove invaluable as the lines between digital and television continue to blur.”

Canvas recently announced a strategic investment from Entertainment One focused on distribution, production and financing of premium scripted content for digital and traditional media. Other investors include Allen DeBevoise’s Third Wave Digital and MNM Creative.

Among the pilots Canvas has greenlit for production this summer are: “Delinquents,” written by and starring Selyna Warren and Marissa Read (showrunners for AwesomenessTV’s “Foursome” for YouTube Red), a comedy about two lifelong friends exiting juvenile prison at 25 who have to make their way in the real world; and “Co-ed Protocol,” created and written by Su, a “desktop procedural” format — incorporating video and social media posts — about young undercover operatives.

Vanore previously worked with Canvas Media Studios as a producer on its digital series “Vanity.” Other credits include digital series “Anyone But Me” and feature films “Daddy,” “Love in the Time of Monsters” and “Hopelessly in June.” Vanore’s recently completed projects include “42 Seconds of Happiness”; currently in post-production are “The Rainbow Experiment” and “Buck Run.”

Boxerbaum, an attorney with an entrepreneurial background, previously served as EVP of business development and business affairs for DanceOn for over four years. She’s also the founder of lifestyle programming brand I’ll Have the Fries. Boxerbaum will continue to represent other clients through her strategic law firm Box Counsel.

More Digital

  • ‘Wonder Park’ Tops Studios’ TV Ad

    ‘Wonder Park’ Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending for the Fourth Week in a Row

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV advertising attention analytics company iSpot.tv, Paramount Pictures claims the top spot in spending for the fourth week in row with “Wonder Park.” Ads placed for the animated film had an estimated media value of $5.18 million through Sunday for 1,718 national [...]

  • Chinese Tech Firm Huawei Seeks Content

    Beleaguered Chinese Tech Firm Huawei Seeks Content for Expansion Into Southeast Asia

    One of the most surprising first-time attendees at FilMart is Chinese tech giant Huawei, which has come to Hong Kong to acquire the video content it needs to support its strategy of expansion into Southeast Asia. The company is currently embroiled in a PR nightmare as it defends itself against accusations that its equipment could [...]

  • Canadian Animation Shop Guru Studio Makes

    Canadian Animation Shop Guru Studio Makes Moves in China

    Guru Studio, an award-winning Canadian animation studio, is exploring the possibility of opening an office in Hong Kong or mainland China. The Toronto-based company is keen to get a slice of China’s animation market, which has been growing quickly. Louise Jones, Guru vice president of finance and business affairs, said at a FilMart panel discussion [...]

  • Netflix's Newest Interactive Animated Kids Show

    Netflix Announces New Interactive Animated Kids Show 'Battle Kitty'

    Netflix is doubling down on interactive content for kids. The streaming service announced a new interactive animated show on Tuesday dubbed “Battle Kitty” from Matt Layzell. The company didn’t share a premiere date for the show yet. “Netflix has given me the incredible opportunity to help change how young people see themselves,” said Layzell. “Like [...]

  • stream march madness 2019 online free

    NCAA Tournament: How to Stream March Madness Online

    The rankings are in, and the 68-team field is set. March Madness is officially upon us, and if you want to catch the action from home, from the office, or on-the-go, there are a couple ways to stream March Madness online for free. The first game kicks off today, and the tournament runs until April [...]

  • Google Stream Detailed, Named Stadia

    Google's Stadia Aims to Turn Any Screen Into a Powerful Gaming Console

    Stadia is Google’s game streaming service that is designed to let you play high-end games on most modern screens — be they phone, laptop, tablet, computer or TV — with very little download time and no loss of fidelity, the company announced Tuesday at the Game Developers Conference. The service is launching in 2019. Cost [...]

  • Amazon Focused on Building the Game

    Amazon Focused on Building the Game Industry's Digital Infrastructure

    While most of the discussion around Amazon’s presence in the game industry revolves around their scattershot game projects and rumored cloud gaming platform, the tech giant has been far more involved in building the backend infrastructure for major games. Companies like Square Enix and Zynga both use Amazon Games Tech, Amazon’s portfolio of services that [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content