MIPTV 2012: FremantleMedia Enterprises, Spurlock’s Warrior Poets team for first-look deal

The partnership will see the global distributor launching numerous series from the U.S. doc-maker internationally, including the Sky Atlantic commission Morgan Spurlock's New Britannia and the recently announced A Day in the Life.
April 1, 2012

FremantleMedia Enterprises (FME) has signed a first-look deal with Morgan Spurlock through his prodco, Warrior Poets, which will initially see the global distributor launch a trio of new projects.

The pact, announced this morning in Cannes at the FremantleMedia press breakfast traditionally held during the first day of MIPTV, is designed to take the series work of the Super Size Me director to markets outside of the U.S.

Warrior Poets series being shopped internationally as part of the deal include Morgan Spurlock’s New Britannia, a 10 x 60-minute series originally commissioned by Sky Atlantic which follows the director as he dissects the eccentricities and oddities within British culture, with the help of assorted guests from the worlds of politics, comedy and celebrity.

FME will also distribute Failure Club, a 12 x 60-minute series originally appearing on the web via Yahoo! in the U.S. The program sees Spurlock and a team of seven participants meeting once a week for a year to help each other accomplish things they’d not dare to do otherwise.

The news follows the announcement that FME would be distributing original content from online platform Hulu to international markets. Part of that deal includes the rights to the 16 x 30-minute Spurlock series A Day in the Life, which documents a day in the life of assorted fascinating people ranging from Sir Richard Branson to street artist Mr. Brainwash.

“We pride ourselves on partnering with the industry’s most exciting and innovative talents and are pleased to welcome Morgan and his team at Warrior Poets to the FME family,” said FME global CEO David Ellender in a statement, while Spurlock called FME “the perfect company to help us grow and expand our reach beyond the States.”

The two partners will further discuss the deal during a press lunch with Spurlock and FME executives scheduled for today.

Other projects highlighted during the media event include formats such as Recipe to Riches from Temple Street Productions (a realscreen MIPTV Pick); quiz show 1001 Things You Should Know from Fremantle UK prodco Thames; and a help-for-hoarders format from the Netherlands, Blue Circle’s Help! My House is a Mess.

Also during the breakfast, FremantleMedia CEO Tony Cohen earmarked three trends that he sees as currently transforming television: the prominence of formats; the move towards original content from “disruptors” of the traditional TV model, such as Netflix, YouTube and Google; and the “inexorable” growth of social television, all of which he said bode well for producers.

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