“Spinning Gold” director Timothy Scott Bogart will tell the story behind MTV through his new production company.
Hot on the heels of the Cannes market launch of “Spinning Gold,” the story of Casablanca Records founder Neil Bogart, the director has unveiled Hero Partners, a partnership with producing partner Jessica Martins of Hero Entertainment, and “Spinning Gold” producer and financier Chris Torto.
Dedicated to streamlining independent film financing, the new venture will fully finance four to five films per year, providing a one-stop shop to finance and produce a slate of music-driven projects across film, television and theater (Broadway).
Torto has assembled an initial feature film production fund of $100 million, highlighted by a slate of original pop musicals, including “Marian,” a period film set to modern music that tells the true story behind Robin Hood. Production begins in Italy in November with Bogart at the helm and Martins and Torto producing.
Also set for the initial slate is the true story of the launch of MTV, which is being planned as both a feature and Broadway musical, with Bogart writing, and original MTV VJs Mark Goodman and Alan Hunter as executive producers. Martins and Torto will produce.
“Content has always been king, and content creators have always been the coin of the realm,” said Bogart. “Empowering those creators to not only see their passion projects funded, but to protect their rights to those projects along the way is the cornerstone of the Hero Partners ethos.
“Chris’ financial backing was the reason we were able to complete ‘Spinning Gold’ before selling it, maintain the soundtrack and Broadway musical rights, and tell this deeply personal story exactly how it should be told. We can’t wait to emulate this process with our upcoming slate.”
Bogart said the challenge has always been securing financing for his films, while retaining “critical rights” like soundtrack, Broadway and touring, which he says are “extraordinary extensions to the story brands nearly always impossible to hold onto.”
Martins added: “The path of independent financing has evolved over the years into a complex labyrinth of tax credit and pre-sale lending, coupled with equity financing that has become increasingly harder to secure. When we first shared our vision for how we wanted to finance ‘Spinning Gold,’ Chris, whose own success over the years has been defined by combatting expected industry norms, immediately embraced our artist-centric vision for a new kind of studio in the tradition of the early United Artists and the great independents like Goldcrest Films. And then he went further, asking if this model could be the foundation for not just this film, but an entire business committed to challenging the ways things had always been.”
Hero has also committed the funding for a Broadway musical adaptation of “Spinning Gold,” planned for the 2023/2024 season.
Bogart will direct from his book, and produce alongside Martins and Torto. Leading cast members from the movie Spinning Gold are in talks to return to star in the Broadway musical.