Chloé Zhao has entered into a multi-year first look TV deal with Searchlight Television, Variety has learned.
Under the terms of the deal, Zhao will develop and produce scripted content for Searchlight TV across all platforms. It represents a homecoming for Zhao, with Searchlight having produced her Academy Award and Golden Globe-winning feature film “Nomadland.”
“Chloe is a visionary filmmaker and, since the moment we finished ‘Nomadland,’ we have looked to find new ways to collaborate again,” said Searchlight presidents Matthew Greenfield and David Greenbaum. “We are inspired by the breadth of Chloe’s storytelling passions and are beyond happy to be able to link arms and expand the opportunities to support personal, powerful, and enduring stories.”
The deal marks Zhao’s first moves within the television space. She is one of the most acclaimed filmmakers working today, with “Nomadland” having won three Oscars and two Golden Globes. That includes a win for best director for Zhao at both awards shows with the film also winning best picture at both as well. Zhao was also nominated for her work on the screenplay and received another Academy Award nomination for editing “Nomadland” as well.
Zhao is also known for her work on films like “The Rider,” “Songs My Brother Taught Me,” and the Marvel film “Eternals.” She is repped by Pangea, Ilene Feldman Management and Lichter Grossman.
The deal with Zhao represents the latest efforts by Searchlight to bolster their newly-launched TV division. Most recently, Searchlight TV’s first produced show — the Hulu limited series “The Dropout” — picked up five Emmy nominations. Series star Amanda Seyfried won the Emmy for best actress in a limited series. Up next, Searchlight TV is producing the Hulu variety series “History of the World Part II” from Mel Brooks as well as a series continuation of “The Full Monty” for FX and Disney+. The company is also behind the Hulu Spanish-language series “La Maquina” starring Gael García Bernal and Diego Luna.