Deluxe Acquires German Dubbing Studio Creative Sound Conception

Deluxe, a provider of digital and cloud-based localization and distribution solutions, has acquired German dubbing studio Creative Sound Conception Studio (CSC Studio).

Founded in 1989 by Nils Wulkop, Hamburg-based CSC Studio services content creators around the world. CSC Studio has dubbed numerous iconic movies as well as some of the most widely viewed episodic series from around the world, with a roster of more than 85 clients, according to a press release. CSC Studio will be rebranded as Deluxe Germany and will undergo a facility expansion to build out additional recording rooms to provide extensible capacity for German language dubbing for existing and new customers, according to the release.

“With the increase in global content production, including the rise of local language original content that is being localized and distributed in more languages than ever before, this acquisition provides Deluxe with an expanded footprint and capacity to meet growing market demands.” said Chris Reynolds, Deluxe’s EVP and GM of worldwide localization and fulfillment, in a statement. “Deluxe currently has dubbing studios in Los Angeles, Paris, Madrid, and Barcelona. With the addition of Deluxe Germany, we are motivated to continue expanding our owned and operated footprint through both organic expansion and additional acquisitions.”

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“My team and I are delighted to be joining the Deluxe family,” said founder CSC Studio Nils Wulkop in a statement. “Teaming up with Deluxe will benefit the industry and its growing demand for German language dubbing. With Deluxe’s immediate investment in a new facility expansion we are looking forward to increasing our capacity to support more volume and customers, while maintaining the highest levels of creative dubbing quality.”

With the backing of Platinum Equity, Deluxe has continued to focus on global expansion and investment in technology to provide enhanced service offerings to customers, and CSC Studio represents the seventh acquisition Deluxe has made since Platinum Equity acquired the business in 2020, according to the release.

Seasons of ‘Guilt,’ ‘Walter Presents’ Headed to PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel in August

The second  season of “Guilt” from “Masterpiece Mystery” as well as “Charité” and “Redemption” from “Walter Presents” are among the international programs streaming on the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel in August.

The subscription rate for the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel is $5.99 per month with an Amazon Prime or Prime Video subscription. 

Four episodes in season two of “Masterpiece Mystery: Guilt,” set in Edinburgh, Scotland, premiere Aug. 28. In the English crime drama, when disgraced lawyer Max McCall (Mark Bonnar) is released from prison, he finds himself entwined in a gripping new story with characters old and new, as they battle the consequences of their actions amidst shocking new developments. Emun Elliot returns as Kenny, and Phyllis Logan (“Downton Abbey”) joins the cast as Maggie.

“Charité”

Six episodes of the German drama “Walter Presents: Charité” debut Aug. 12. The series follows the staff of Berlin’s world-famous hospital where medical history is being made. When Ida is saved at the prestigious Charité hospital in 1888 Berlin, Germany, she has no money to cover the cost. In lieu of payment, she begins to work off her debt as a nurse. There she witnesses history being made as she gets an inside look into cures for tuberculosis and diphtheria and discovers her passion for medicine.

“Redemption”

Eight episodes of the Italian crime drama “Walter Presents: Redemption” premiere Aug. 26. In the series, Valerio is an ex-cop who has received devastating news that his estranged son Ettore has committed suicide. Unable to believe his son would do such a thing, Valerio begins to hunt for the truth behind his son’s death. As he pledges to obtain justice for his son, the investigation also proves to be Valerio’s last chance to come to terms with his troubled past, both as a man and a father.

Other titles coming to the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel in August include “Walter Presents: Troubled Waters,” debuting Aug. 5; “Walter Presents: Blood Oath,” coming Aug. 19; and “The Boleyns: A Scandalous Family,” debuting Aug. 28.

Paramount Announces Global Management Changes to Help Drive Streaming Video

Paramount Global May 16 announced management appointments to expand the company’s international expansion of its streaming products, Paramount+ and Pluto TV.

Marco Nobili has been promoted to EVP, international GM of Paramount+, where he will lead the strategy and execution for Paramount’s SVOD/AVOD platform’s continued expansion in markets worldwide. Olivier Jollet has been elevated to the role of EVP, International GM of Pluto TV to continue the free ad-supported streaming television (FAST) service’s international growth.

Marco Nobili

Nobili and Jollet report to Raffaele Annecchino, CEO of international networks, studios and streaming, and to Tom Ryan, CEO of streaming and founder of Pluto TV.

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“With Paramount+ and SkyShowtime expected to expand to 60 markets by end of 2022, and Pluto TV continuing to expand worldwide, I’m confident Marco and Olivier’s leadership will enable us to seize the opportunity and build on our progress towards our integrated global streaming business,” Annecchino said in a statement.

Previously SVP of international marketing, data an analytics for Paramount Global’s streaming division, Nobili will now oversee all operations for Paramount+ outside the U.S., including content, marketing, distribution, data and operations. Building on the service’s momentum since launching in 2021, Nobili will lead the strategy and execution for Paramount+’s continued growth. Marco has deep streaming experience, having formerly worked at both Netflix and Amazon.

Olivier Jollet

Jollet, who previously served as SVP and GM of Pluto TV internationally, will lead a coordinated approach to further expand Pluto TV outside the U.S., which is live in 30 countries and territories globally. Jollet will oversee all operations for Pluto TV outside the U.S., including ad sales, content, marketing, distribution, data and operations. Jollet will look to identify new partnerships and opportunities for Pluto TV across the digital entertainment ecosystem.

This year, Paramount+ will expand to the U.K. and many European countries, as well as South Korea, and, in 2023, India. Pluto TV is set to launch in the Nordics May 18, through a partnership with NENT Group, bringing the service’s global footprint to three continents and more than 30 countries and territories including Spain, France and Germany. The company offers a differentiated streaming portfolio, with SkyShowtime, a joint venture premium streaming service with Comcast that will launch in many European countries beginning in 2022.

By the end of this year, Paramount will have paid streaming services available in more than 60 markets across the U.K., Latin America, Canada, Australia, South Korea, the Caribbean and all major markets in Europe, and in 2023, the company will expand further in Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

Netflix to Bow More Than 25 New Korean Shows and Movies in 2022

On the heels of the Korean hit “Squid Game,” Netflix has announced more than 25 upcoming Korean shows and movies for 2022. 

Global viewing hours of Netflix Korean shows grew six-fold last year compared with 2019, according to Netflix. To date, “Squid Game” is the biggest show the service has ever launched, reigning as the most-viewed Netflix show in 94 countries at its peak. In fact, 95% of “Squid Game” viewership came from outside Korea.

Two months after “Squid Game,” Netflix launched “Hellbound,” which had a premiere that clocked 43.48 million viewing hours. “Hellbound” was among the Top 10 Netflix shows in 93 countries, and ranked No. 1 in 34 countries, according to the service. Sci-fi mystery “The Silent Sea” also made it to the No. 1 spot on the weekly non-English Top 10 lists for its premiere.

From 2016 to 2021, Netflix launched more than 130 Korean titles.

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Shows for 2022 include:

  • “All of Us Are Dead,” a series in which zombies invade a high school;
  • “Money Heist: Korea — Joint Economic Area,” an adaptation of the popular Spanish series;
  • Seoul Vibe, an action film where the adventures of a special-ops team take place against the backdrop of the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games;
  • Juvenile Justice, which follows a judge who dislikes juvenile delinquents, later realizing the troubles children face in society;
  • “Twenty Five, Twenty One,” a drama series about youths who lost their dream to the zeitgeist of 1998;
  • “Forecasting Love and Weather,” a romance drama series about people at the Korea Meteorological Administration;
  • “Thirty Nine,” a romance drama series that follows the friendship, love and life of three friends who are about to turn forty;
  • “Tomorrow,” a series about how a long-time unemployed man accidentally bumps into grim reapers on a special mission and becomes a contract worker at their Crisis Management Team;
  • “Business Proposal,” an office romance drama series based on the globally famous web novel and webtoon;
  • The Sound of Magic, based on the popular webtoon “Annarasumanara,” about a girl and a mysterious magician;
  • Remarriage and Desires, a satire of Korean society;
  • The Accidental Narco (working title), based on real-life events about an ordinary entrepreneur who has no choice but to risk his life in joining the secret mission of government agents to capture a Korean drug lord;
  • The Fabulous, a romance that explores the dreams, love and friendship
    of young people who devote their lives to working in the fashion industry;
  • Love to Hate You, about the war-like relationship between a woman who hates losing to men and a man suspicious of women;
  • Somebody, about a murder case revolving around a social dating app;
  • Black Knight, about an air polluted world in 2071, where people depend on respirator masks to breathe;
  • Love and Leashes, about a different kind of romance between a man with a
    unique taste and a woman who stumbles upon his secret;
  • Yaksha: Ruthless Operations, a spy action film about a merciless man
    known as “Yaksha” who crosses paths with a prosecutor on a special inspection mission in Shenyang, a city in China notorious for espionage;
  • Carter, about an agent suffering from memory loss who is thrown
    into the middle of a mysterious mission;
  • 20th Century Girl, about a women who rekindles a teenage romance;
  • JUNG_E, which portrays a desolated Earth in the 22nd century that is no longer inhabitable due to climate change;
  • “Celeb Five: Behind the Curtain,” an unscripted series;
  • A Model Family, about a man on the brink of bankruptcy and divorce stumbling upon a car loaded with cash; and
  • Glitch, about a girl who attempts to track down her missing boyfriend
    with the help of members of a UFO club.

FilmRise Hires Emilia Nuccio as VP of International Sales

New York-based film and television studio and streaming network FilmRise has appointed Emilia Nuccio to the newly created position of VP of 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,” FilmRise CEO Danny Fisher said 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.”

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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 of 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.

Netflix Launches Free Plan in Vietnam

Netflix has launched a new free plan that will let anyone with an Android phone in Vietnam get the service free without ads. 

Vietnam is the only country in Asia where Netflix is offering the free plan, and the second one to experience the free plan, after Kenya, according to a blog post from Cathy Conk, director of product innovation.

“All you have to do is enter your email, confirm you are 18 or over, and create a password,” she wrote. “We won’t ask you for any payment information when you sign up for the free plan. Once you’re in, you can immediately start watching many of Netflix’s most popular series and films like ‘Squid Game,’ ‘The Witcher,’ ‘Money Heist,’ and ‘Kingdom,’ just to name a few.”

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The plan includes Netflix features such as recommendations, five profiles and “My List.” Parental controls are also included. In the coming months, the download feature will also be made available in the free plan, she wrote. 

To get the full catalog, more features, and the option to get Netflix on a TV or laptop, consumers must upgrade to a paid plan.

ViacomCBS to Acquire Stake in Spanish-Language Content Producer

ViacomCBS Networks International (VCNI) has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire a majority stake in the Spanish-language content producer Fox TeleColombia & Estudios TeleMexico from The Walt Disney Co. and the founding family of Fox TeleColombia & Estudios TeleMexico.

ViacomCBS International Studios’ VIS, a division of VCNI, will operate Fox TeleColombia & Estudios TeleMexico as a collaborative partnership with the founding family. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval and customary closing conditions.

Through this transaction, VCNI will gain access to Fox TeleColombia & Estudios TeleMexico’s studio operations in both Colombia and Mexico, as well as many hours of library content, including premium series, telenovelas, films, documentaries, unscripted, kids and family, branded and digital content, and live sports shows produced for various audiences. This content will fuel ViacomCBS’s global streaming platforms including Paramount+ and Pluto TV, and its linear networks around the world, according to the company. Fox TeleColombia & Estudios TeleMexico will also bolster ViacomCBS’ Spanish-language content production capabilities to capitalize on significant content demand in the region and worldwide, the company noted.

“The acquisition of Fox TeleColombia & Estudios TeleMexico, combined with ViacomCBS’s existing Spanish-language portfolio including Telefe and Chilevisión, reinforces the company’s position as a leading worldwide producer of Spanish-language content,” Raffaele Annecchino, president and CEO, ViacomCBS Networks International, said in a statement. “This content will fuel ViacomCBS’ global ecosystem across Paramount+, Pluto TV and its linear networks.”

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“This announcement is very fulfilling and I feel very honored that Fox TeleColombia & Estudios TeleMexico will continue its expansion and growth in the hands of such an amazing company as ViacomCBS and its talented and visionary executives,” Samuel Duque Rozo, founder and CEO of Fox TeleColombia & Estudios TeleMexico, said in a statement. “The extraordinary work that our team has made during all these years, combined with ViacomCBS’s vision, iconic brands, experience, professionalism, creativity among much more, will bring nothing less but the best for both businesses.”

Rozo will continue to exclusively support the business from a creative and strategic advisory position, and Samuel Duque Duque, current president, will lead the business. Fox TeleColombia & Estudios TeleMexico will fall under the remit of Juan “JC” Acosta, President of ViacomCBS International Studios and Networks Americas.

The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Content Marketplace Vuulr Partners With Kanal D

Vuulr, a global online content marketplace for film and TV rights that connects buyers and distributors worldwide, has partnered with Kanal D International (KDI), the global business arm of Kanal D, the leading TV channel of Turkey broadcasting under Europe’s Demirören Media Group.

Under the partnership, Kanal D International will list 24 titles on the Vuulr platform totaling approximately 2,160 hours of content, mostly in the romantic comedy and premium drama genres. Among the titles that Kanal D International is listing on Vuulr are dramas Twist of Fate and Recipe of Love, along with “Hekimoglu,” which is the Turkish version of the hit U.S. scripted series “House.”

“We’re excited to team up with Vuulr to ensure our content continues to be distributed all across the globe,” executive director at Kanal D International Ekin Koyuncu Karaman said in a statement. “There’s been an increasing demand for Turkish content worldwide. Vuulr’s global reach makes it easier  to get our titles into the hands of broadcasters and streaming platforms regardless of their location or time zone.”

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“As the demand for international content continues to soar, we’re delighted to expand the breadth of the catalogue available on Vuulr with this exciting partnership with Kanal D International, which will bring more than 2,000 hours of premium new Turkish series to our platform,” Vuulr chief content officer Natasha Malhotra said in a statement. “Their heartwarming dramas and world-class production have universal appeal and Vuulr makes this content available to buyers from around the world in a simple, frictionless way as we continue our mission to transform the distribution and acquisition ecosystem.”

There are currently more than 30,000 unique films and TV titles available on Vuulr, amounting to more than 173,000 hours of content from 7,000 sellers in more than 120 countries, offering buyers a destination for content discovery and acquisition.

Whip Media and NATPE Launch New Report on Domestic Consumption of International TV Series

Software platform and data provider Whip Media and the National Association of Television Program Executives (NATPE) have announced a partnership to provide a new data report on how U.S. audiences are consuming international TV series.

The new NATPE Navigator report highlights what original content produced outside the U.S. is among the most viewed domestically, according to Whip. It is available every other week on the NATPE, and Whip Media websites and will be distributed in the NATPE newsletter.

Netflix’s Spanish series “Money Heist” topped the first report for Sept. 6-19.

The NATPE report is compiled utilizing Whip Media’s proprietary global panel of consumers who report what programs they follow and watch and, further, how they feel about those shows, according to Whip. The panel is made up of 18 million viewers in more than 170 countries and provides data on more than 4.5 million movie and TV episodes on 1,100 global platforms.

The NATPE Navigator ranks the top 10 most viewed non-U.S. TV series among U.S. viewers. According to Whip, the report also provides a snapshot of a specific global title, including who is watching it, how people feel about it, what else they are watching, and where that title is available on SVOD services globally based on real-time streaming availability data provided by Whip Media’s partner, BB, a media intelligence and content distribution researcher.

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“We at NATPE are proud of our position as a resource for this industry that has seen countless changes to the global content marketplace and are always looking for new ways to provide additional insights and guidance to our members,” J.P. Bommel, president and CEO of NATPE, said in a statement. “This partnership with Whip Media will do just that, and we are eager to see the results of their study as we continue to navigate the shifts our industry is going through.”

“With the growing consumer demand for new TV series and movies, content is no longer staying within its originating territories, but it’s still difficult to predict hits and what content will resonate with local viewers,” Carol Hanley, president of Whip Media, said in a statement. “We’re excited to partner with NATPE to provide this new actionable data to the industry along with insights on how to fill gaps in their programming in a marketplace now unbound by geography.”

HBO Max Launching in Latin America and Caribbean June 29

SVOD service HBO Max will be available in 39 territories in Latin America and the Caribbean starting June 29 with catalog and Max Originals plus live sports in Brazil and Mexico later this year.

“Our launch in Latin America and the Caribbean is the first step in our global rollout of HBO Max,” Johannes Larcher, head of HBO Max International, said in a statement. “We are thrilled that fans across the region will soon be able to enjoy HBO Max and its amazing collection of content. WarnerMedia is one of the most popular and trusted sources of entertainment across Latin America, and we are very excited that our global journey starts here.”

The platform will offer Warner Bros. movies at no additional cost 35 days after being released in theaters in Latin America, with titles such as Lin-Manuel Miranda’s musical In the Heights, Space Jam: A New Legacy starring LeBron James, The Suicide Squad directed by James Gunn and starring Margot Robbie and John Cena, and Dune starring Timothée Chalamet and Zendaya and directed by Denis Villeneuve, among many other films. Recent premieres such as Tom & Jerry, Mortal Kombat, Judas and the Black Messiah and Godzilla vs. Kong will be available on HBO Max in 2021.

HBO Max will have exclusively new local original titles produced in the region with stories such as “Pop Divas,” a competition for the pop genre crown hosted by Pabllo Vittar and Luísa Sonza; the documentary series “PCC Secret Power”; the astrology show “Astral Journey” hosted by Giovanna Ewbank; a competition with the best stylists in “The Cut, Last Bravas”; a Mexican series about women’s soccer with screenwriters such as José Javier Reguilón, Luis Gamboa, Paula Rendón and Helen Santiago; “Love Spells,” a comedy starring Gabriela de la Garza; and the action comedy “Bunker,” among other titles.

Later this year, soccer fans in Brazil and Mexico can see matches of the UEFA Champions League.

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HBO Max will offer two subscription plans, starting from $3 (U.S.) per month; prices per plan and country can be found on HBOMax.com. The standard plan offers access to three simultaneous users, five personalized profiles, content downloads and video in high definition with some titles in 4K, across all supported devices. The mobile plan offers access to the same content catalog with a single, standard-definition stream on supported smartphones and tablets. Subscriptions for recurring periods of three or 12 months will also be also available with a discount of up to 30%.
HBO Max will also offer a seven-day free trial period and an option where users will be able to sample some of the best series and documentaries at no cost.

The platform will also be available through partners such as AT&T Mexico and regional partners such as DirecTV Latin America, Sky Brasil, DirecTV Go and Grupo América Móvil, which will offer HBO Max to their subscribers.

Those users who have an existing HBO linear subscription through participating distribution partners such as Claro Video (Mexico), Claro (Brazil), Claro (Latam), Oi (Brazil), Tim (Brazil), TotalPlay (Mexico), Vivo (Brazil), VTR (Chile), will have access to HBO Max at no additional cost. Additional distribution partners that will offer HBO Max will continue to be announced in the upcoming weeks.

Existing HBO Go users will receive instructions before the launch on how to access HBO Max.  As of HBO Max launch, the current HBO Go service in Latin America and the Caribbean will be discontinued.

“HBO Max is a platform built in Latin America for latinoamericanos,” Luis Durán, GM for HBO Max in the region, said in a statement. “In this context, our catalog delivers on the intensity and the passion of our region, our plans deliver on the experience users expect, and our prices deliver on our promise to entertain every member of the family. Our goal is to transform the streaming experience in Latin America, one word, one shot, one pixel at a time. And we are just getting started.”