The London and Brighton-based Further South was founded by former Lionsgate executive November, who was previously creative director of the studio’s U.K. TV division. The production company was backed by Lionsgate since its formation in 2019 — though it’s unclear how much of a stake the company had in the business — with Ringside now taking over that backing.
Prior to joining Lionsgate, November was director of drama across all ITV channels with credits including “Marcella,” “Cold Feet,” “Innocent,” “Unforgotten,” “The Durrells,” “Grantchester” and “Victoria.” He was also the executive producer on “Coronation Street” and “Emmerdale” for many years.
“To be joining Ringside in the early days of their development is a fantastic opportunity,” said November. “They have all the knowledge and experience to help Further South grow and we are really looking forward to working with the group to help realize our shared ambitions for English-language drama.”
Sarah Conroy will continue alongside November in her role as executive producer.
Both Ringside Media and Ringside Studios were founded by British producer and former commissioner Gub Neal (“The Fall,” “Queer as Folk”) and French media powerhouse Newen, which is owned by broadcast giant TF1.
Neal said: “We are delighted to be welcoming Steve and Sarah into the Ringside group. Steve brings with him a wide range of production experience as well as a highly successful background in commissioning, and we are really looking forward to collaborating with their considerable talents across the group.”
Philippe Levasseur, Newen’s head of international, said: “Steve has a wealth of experience developing drama for domestic and international markets. He has a rare combination of talents, having overseen some of the most commercially successful U.K. shows, and then producing high-end series. We are delighted to welcome him in the Newen team, as part of our plan to expand the network of British talents we are building around Ringside Studios.”
Ringside Media was formed in 2020 as part of parent company Newen’s strategy to expand into the English-speaking scripted market, particularly that out of the U.K. The company invested in Fictionhouse and Slate Entertainment earlier this year. The companies will work closely with Newen Connect, Newen’s distribution arm.