FilmRise Picks Up FAST Rights to Canadian Series ‘Kim’s Convenience’

FilmRise, the New York-based film and television studio and streaming network, has acquired multi-territory, ad-supported digital linear (FAST) rights to the critically acclaimed Canadian comedy series “Kim’s Convenience” from Canada-based Thunderbird Entertainment.

The deal gives FilmRise exclusive FAST (free ad-supported streaming) rights to all five seasons of the series, which it will program across its existing FAST Channels as well as allow for the creation of dedicated marathon FAST channels of the series across the United States, Latin America, German-speaking Europe, French-speaking Europe, Italy and Spain. FilmRise plans to offer the series on FAST linear streaming channels on IMDb TV, Pluto, The Roku Channel, Samsung TV+ and the FilmRise Streaming Network, among others.

Originally broadcast on CBC starting in 2016, the series made its international debut on Netflix in 2018. 

Based on Ins Choi’s award-winning play of the same name, “Kim’s Convenience” depicts the Korean-Canadian Kim family who runs a convenience store in Toronto. During its five season run, the series was the winner of multiple Canadian Screen Awards, including Best Comedy Series, Foreign Drama of the Year at the Seoul International Drama Awards (2019), Members’ Choice Series Ensemble Award for Best cast at the 2017 Toronto ACTRA Awards (Association of Canadian Television and Radio Artists).

The comedy stars Paul Sun-Hyung Lee (“The Mandalorian”), Andrew Phung (“Run the Burbs”) Andrea Bang (“A Million Little Things”), Jean Yoon (“The Voyeurs”), Simu Liu  (Marvel’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings), and Nicole Power, who stars in “Strays,” which is the spin-off series from “Kim’s Convenience” that premiered in September 2021 on CBC.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

“As the FilmRise Streaming Network continues to grow, so does our approach in acquiring programs featuring unique stories from people of diverse backgrounds,” said Max Einhorn,  SVP of acquisitions and co-productions for FilmRise, in a statement. “‘Kim’s Convenience’ has had a huge impact on a wide range of viewers, and we are thrilled to bring this culturally relevant series for free to streaming audiences worldwide.”

“Kim’s delightful characters and beloved stories brought love and laughter into the hearts of many during its five seasons,” said Richard Goldsmith, president, global distribution and consumer products at Thunderbird Entertainment, in a statement. “Through our partnership with FilmRise, we are thrilled that new audiences internationally will have the opportunity to connect with and enjoy the heart-warming and hilarious experiences of the Kim family.”

FilmRise Hires Showtime Executive Gabriel Gazoul as Director of Film Acquisitions

FilmRise Jan. 20 announced the appointment of Gabriel Gazoul as director of film acquisitions. In this role, Gabriel will oversee the acquisition of new release feature films and documentaries, as well as collaborate on release strategies with the company’s sales and marketing teams.

Gazoul, who spent 12 years acquiring content for Showtime Networks, reports to Max Einhorn, SVP, Acquisitions & Co-Productions, in New York.

“Gabriel has a remarkable eye for identifying distinctive titles that have proven successful,” Einhorn said in a statement. “We are certain he will further expand our catalog of feature film offerings that will benefit our partners everywhere.”

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

With more than 20 years of experience, Gazoul began his career at Showtime in 2000, climbing the ladder to become senior director, content acquisitions. In addition to negotiating film and television programming for Showtime, CBS All Access, and Pop TV, Gazoul spearheaded the launch of over two dozen Showtime original standup comedy specials for Martin Lawrence, Dane Cook, Eddie Griffin and Sommore, and acquired several documentaries, including David Bowie: Finding Fame, George Michael: Freedom, and Ron Howard’s documentary on Jay-Z’s music festival Made in America, among others.

FilmRise Hires Emilia Nuccio as VP of International Sales

FilmRise, the New York-based film and television studio and streaming network, has appointed Emilia Nuccio to the newly created position of VP, International Sales. 

Nuccio will oversee all international deals and will be responsible for selling the FilmRise catalog as well as new release and FilmRise co-productions into the international marketplace, among other responsibilities.

She will report to Melissa Wohl, SVP, head of sales.

“We are thrilled to have Emilia bring her unmatched knowledge of the international sales marketplace to FilmRise,” said FilmRise CEO Danny Fisher in a statement. “Her innovative approach and strategic expertise will surely lead FilmRise to new and exciting avenues and opportunities for growth.”

“I couldn’t be more excited to work with such an innovative company like FilmRise which continues to grow in the digital arena like no other,” Nuccio said in a statement. “I’m honored to be joining such a team of highly skilled and experienced executives.”

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Nuccio has spent most of her career as a leader in the domestic and international sales and digital distribution arena focusing on acquisitions, licensing and merchandising. Past positions include SVP of sales at Dynamic Television; president of international sales at Echo Bridge for two years following four years as their SVP; president of international program and licensing sales at Itsy Bitsy Entertainment Co.; VP, Latin American sales at BBC Worldwide Americas; and international director of sales at Televisa. In 2001 she founded her own company, Enoro Media, and she continues to serve on the board of directors of the Worldwide Audiovisual Women’s Association.

FilmRise Names Former Vudu Executive Daniel Gagliardi VP, Digital Distribution

FilmRise, the New York-based film and television studio and streaming network, Jan. 4 announced the appointment of Daniel Gagliardi as VP of digital distribution and business development.

In his new role, Gagliardi will spearhead and manage the growth and performance optimization of FilmRise AVOD and FAST channels in addition to creating opportunities and implementing new strategies for the company’s global AVOD and FAST partners. Gagliardi reports directly to Melissa Wohl, SVP, Head of Sales for FilmRise.

Daniel Gagliardi

“Daniel brings high-level and valuable experience working at large content providers and streaming platforms since the genesis of SVOD and AVOD, which will surely have an immediate positive impact on our initiatives in support of our streaming partners and our own FilmRise OTT channels,” CEO Danny Fisher said in a statement.

Previously, Gagliardi was head of content at Vudu where he was responsible for building and leading the content partnerships team. His initiatives drove a three-fold increase in Vudu’s usage, by growing active users and average user session lengths across all demos. His purview spanned the entire content spectrum, including original programming, film/tv licensing and third-party channel licensing. He debuted Vudu’s first original programs and partnered with myriad content licensors, including Disney, Warner Bros., Sony Pictures, Lionsgate, MGM, FilmRise and Samuel Goldwyn, among others.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Prior to that, Gagliardi served as VP of worldwide television and digital distribution for Lionsgate, where he oversaw content licensing partnerships with an emphasis on AVOD. He was responsible for industry-first deals with Hulu, YouTube, Tubi, Pluto TV, Roku, Amazon and Crackle, among others.

Gagliardi will be attending this year’s NATPE in Miami for FilmRise.

FilmRise Licenses Scholastic Series for FAST, AVOD Platforms

FilmRise, a New York-based film and television studio and streaming network, has licensed nine children’s programs from Scholastic Entertainment, including the 1990 “The Baby-Sitters Club” series, “Animorphs,” “Stellaluna” and “I Spy,” among others.

The deal gives FilmRise exclusive English and Spanish-language distribution rights to the programs on AVOD and FAST platforms.

“These programs are based on beloved book series that families have embraced over the years,” Danny Fisher, CEO of FilmRise, said in a statement. “Our partnership with Scholastic Entertainment allows FilmRise to share the joy of learning with a new generation of young viewers and families and significantly expands our footprint in the children’s AVOD space.”

The deal includes 230 episodes. In addition to the above, the other programs include “Astroblast,” “Maya Y Miguel,” the animated version of “Horrible Histories,” “Dear America” and “Dear America: Royal Diaries.”

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Based on the best-selling Scholastic book series by Ann M. Martin, “The Baby-Sitters Club,” which originally aired on HBO in 1990, follows Kristy and her friends as they juggle babysitting, friendship, boys, school and growing up.

“Animorphs,” based on the best-selling book series of the same name, follows five kids who are given the power to morph into any creature they touch to help them fight the villain Visser Three and his fellow Yeerks, a breed of parasitic aliens threatening Earth.  

“Stellaluna,” based on the beloved children’s book, is an animated feature that follows a young fruit bat who finds friendship, love and acceptance in the most unexpected places. Stellaluna learns to cherish the things that make her different from everyone else.

The Scholastic picture-riddle books come to life in “I Spy,” an animated play-along adventure series for kids. Viewers join Spyler and Cece as they attempt to find the four hidden objects featured in a riddle.

FilmRise Acquires N.A. Rights to ‘Marvelous and the Black Hole’

FilmRise, the New York-based film and television studio and streaming network, has acquired exclusive theatrical, digital and broadcast distribution rights to Marvelous and the Black Hole for the United States and Canada.

The feature, about an unlikely bond between a young girl and an eccentric magician, stars four-time Emmy Award-winner Rhea Perlman (“Cheers,” “Matilda,” “The Mindy Project”) and Miya Cech (Always Be My Maybe, “Are You Afraid of the Dark?”). In the film written and directed by Kate Tsang, a teenage delinquent (Cech) befriends a surly magician (Perlman) who helps her navigate her inner demons and dysfunctional family with sleight of hand magic. 

Refinery 29 named Miya Cech an “Unforgettable Breakout Star” of the 2021 Sundance Film Festival.

“The combination of releasing Kate Tsang’s directorial debut film featuring the terrific performance of 2021 Sundance Film Festival breakout star Miya Cech opposite the masterful comic timing of Rhea Perlman in a unique coming of age comedy, was irresistible,” Danny Fisher, CEO of FilmRise, said in a statement. “This film is a stellar addition to our growing library of films by underrepresented filmmakers telling untold stories.”

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

The film had its worldwide premiere at the 2021 Sundance Film Festival, its New York premiere at the 2021 Tribeca Film Festival and received the Grand Jury Award from the 2021 IFF Boston Film Festival. The film also screened at the 2021 Mill Valley Film Festival; the 2021 Atlanta Film Festival; the 2021 Sun Valley Film Festival, where the film won the One in a Million Narrative award; the 2021 Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival, where it was nominated for the Emerging Filmmaker Award; and the 2021 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, where it was nominated for the Audience Award.

The film is the third recipient of AT&T and the Tribeca Film Institute’s Untold Stories grant, an initiative that selects one project per year by an underrepresented filmmaker with an “untold story.”

FilmRise Orders ‘Making a Serial Killer’ True Crime Series

New York-based film and television studio and streaming network FilmRise has ordered a 10-episode true crime series from FirstLookTV, “Making a Serial Killer.”

The deal gives FilmRise all rights for North America, German-speaking Europe, Australia and New Zealand.

“FilmRise and FirstLookTV are both clear leaders in the true-crime space,” Max Einhorn, SVP of acquisitions and co-productions at FilmRise, said in a statement. “We are amazed by the access and exclusive content Will Hanrahan and his team have secured in this production. After the success of our co-production ‘Meet, Marry, Murder,’ we were excited to partner with FirstLookTV again on this series. Serial killers and their atrocities did not disappear after the 1970s. These look like everyday people, so heed the warning signs this show shares with you.”

Each episode focuses on a different serial killer and offers an answer to the question, “What makes a serial killer tick?” The reasons given by each killer are dissected by criminologists and psychologists and include interviews with detectives, first-person accounts by survivors and their families, and footage from interrogation rooms.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Episodes feature accounts from the parents of a victim of Jesse Matthew, the “The Back-to-School Killer”; two siblings who survived Don Miller, the “East Lansing Serial Killer”; the lead investigator who caught Toronto’s Bruce McArthur; and much more.

FirstLookTV is an international television production company creating factual content and specializing in investigative and true crime content seen in more than 70 territories. Titles include “Evil Up Close,” “10 Steps to Murder,” “Nurses Who Kill,” “A Killer’s Mistake” and “Inside the Mind of a Serial Killer.”

FilmRise Licenses Children’s Programming, Including ‘Barney’

FilmRise, the New York-based film and TV studio and streaming network, has licensed a selection of children’s programs, including “Barney and Friends,” “Angelina Ballerina” and “Camp Lakebottom,” from 9 Story Distribution International for placement on its North American AVOD-based FilmRise Streaming Network.

The deal includes non-exclusive licenses to Seasons 10-14 of “Barney and Friends,” the first four seasons of “Angelina Ballerina,” and the first three seasons of “Camp Lakebottom.”

“These popular children’s programs fit perfectly into our strategy of increasing our market share within the children’s/family space,” FilmRise CEO Danny Fisher said in a statement. “Audiences have an enduring appetite for these established, recognizable family-friendly TV series for kids, and we are pleased to offer them to new generations of children with no fee to their parents.”

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

“Barney & Friends” is  targeted at children ages 2–7. It features the title character Barney, a purple anthropomorphic Tyrannosaurus rex who conveys educational messages through songs and small dance routines with a friendly, silly and optimistic attitude.

“Angelina Ballerina” is a British animated children’s television series, based on the Angelina Ballerina series of children’s books. The program is about Angelina Mouseling, a fictional young mouse who is training to become a ballerina. Dame Judi Dench performs the voice of Miss Lilly, her ballet teacher.

“Camp Lakebottom” follows 12-year old boy named McGee. When McGee sets out for summer camp, but ends up on the wrong bus, he meets Squirt and Gretchen, and they end up at Camp Lakebottom. The forgotten, weird place has a lot of adventures in store for the three friends and their enemy Buttsquat.

FilmRise, TMS Entertainment Partner to Distribute 38 Anime TV Shows, Movies

FilmRise, a New York-based film and television studio and streaming network, has entered into a distribution deal with TMS Entertainment, one of the world’s largest anime studios. The deal gives FilmRise AVOD rights to 38 anime television series and films which include over 1,100 episodes, in the United States and Canada.

Programs include multiple seasons and films from the highly popular
franchises “Lupin the 3rd,” “Sonic X,” “Virtua Fighter” and “Case
Closed.” In addition, the TV series “Sherlock Hound,” “Monster Rancher,” “ItaKiss,” “Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple,” “Saint Seiya:
The Lost Canvas,” and the classic children’s film “Little Nemo,” among
others, are included in the deal.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

FilmRise will distribute to AVOD/FAST platforms, and FilmRise’s Streaming Network of Channels where the programs will stream on a soon to be launched FilmRise-branded OTT Anime-focused channel.

“TMS Entertainment is one of the world’s premiere anime studios, and a key player in this genre that is experiencing tremendous growth with streaming audiences around the world,” Max Einhorn, SVP of acquisitions and co-productions, said in a statement.”These highly sought-after productions from TMS are an incredible addition to our offerings in this increasingly popular vertical.”

Sam Maseba of TMS Entertainment added, “Partnering with FilmRise allows us to increase exposure of these highly-popular anime programs.  Already having a dedicated and loyal following around the world, these hit series can now be enjoyed for free on streaming platforms in North America.”

FilmRise Acquires Domestic AVOD Rights to British Series ‘Line of Duty’

Seeking to up its profile of British-centric programming, FilmRise Aug. 25 announced the acquisition of U.S. AVOD distribution rights to 23 episodes of the BBC popular drama series “Line of Duty.” The program follows the investigations of AC-12, a controversial police anti-corruption unit.

The series follows Detective Sergeant Steve Arnott (Martin Compston), a former authorized firearms officer who was transferred to Anti-Corruption Unit 12 (AC-12), a unit tasked with uncovering police corruption. Arnott is partnered with Detective Constable Kate Fleming (Vicky McClure), a highly commended undercover officer with a keen investigative instinct. They work under the supervision of Superintendent Ted Hastings (Adrien Dunbar). Throughout the series, AC-12 investigates seemingly disparate cases involving allegedly corrupt police officers, with each season focusing on a different corrupt officer.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

“Line of Duty,” garnered 4.1 million viewers collectively when it originally aired in 2012, becoming the best-performing drama series in 10 years on BBC Two. The series won the Royal Television Society Award for Best Drama Series, an Edgar Allen Poe Award from the Mystery Writers of America and has been nominated for a number of BAFTA TV Awards. Due to its success, “Line of Duty” began airing on BBC One in 2017, where it launched its fourth season.

The deal was negotiated by CEO Danny Fisher; Max Einhorn, SVP of acquisitions and co-productions; and Berry Meyerowitz, president of Quiver Entertainment.

“This award-winning and critically acclaimed series is a wonderful addition to our recently launched British TV OTT channel,” Fisher, CEO of FilmRise, said in a statement. “Now, for the first time, U.S. fans can enjoy ‘Line of Duty’ without having to subscribe to a streaming service.”