Streaming channels specialist TV4 Entertainment has launched Concrete Club as an independent original content studio, Variety has learned exclusively.
The genre-based studio will develop, produce and distribute feature films and television series targeting underserved, global audiences for all screens. The new studio is touted as an extension of TV4 Entertainment’s portfolio of genre-based lifestyle, entertainment, and sports over-the-top streaming channels.
Concrete Club said Thursday it will create originals in the genres of existing and planned global streaming brands and use TV4 Entertainment’s channels as a development pipeline and guaranteed distribution for Concrete Club productions.
Concrete Club’s first theatrical release will be “Together,” opening June 15 at every Odeon Cinema across England, Scotland and Wales — making it one of the largest independent, self-distributed opening releases in U.K. history. Produced by TV4 Entertainment, the comedic drama was written and directed by Concrete Club’s studio head, Paul Duddridge.
“Together” is the first in a slate of feature films targeting the global Baby Boomer community and stars British actors Sylvia Syms and Peter Bowles in which a husband fights to be with his wife after she is hospitalized and taken to a nursing home. The film will be theatrically distributed in the United States in September.
Concrete Club will develop, produce and distribute a scripted feature film anthology merging the true crime and horror genres with the Noble Savages team, led by Joe Livecchi, writer-director John Bonito and horror screenwriter Sean Hood, whose credits include “Halloween: Resurrection” and “The Crow: Wicked Prayer.”
“As we dabbled in original films and series over the past few years, it became clear that the middlemen who dominated Old Hollywood for the last half century are increasingly obsolete and that we can control our own destiny,” said Jon Cody, founder and CEO, TV4 Entertainment. “Just as we have done with our streaming channels, our vision is to provide top creators with a platform to connect authentic storytelling with highly-targeted audiences around the globe and on every screen.”
Duddridge, a former U.K. talent agent to Rob Brydon and Michael McIntyre, previously wrote and directed “Mothers and Daughters,” starring Selma Blair, Susan Sarandon and Sharon Stone. He is joined at Concrete Club by industry veterans Erik Stone and Ben Churchill who will be responsible for development and production.
Stone worked at Davis Entertainment and was a manager and production executive at Roar in Los Angeles. Churchill wrote and directed Concrete Club’s upcoming documentary “Lucha VaVooM: Inside America’s Most Outrageous Show.”
Although the primary focus for Concrete Club will be on self-distribution, the studio will also develop projects for third party studios and networks.