CNN forms production, distribution pact with O’Brien

CNN anchor and special correspondent Soledad O'Brien (pictured) has signed a production and distribution deal with CNN for her new prodco, Starfish Media Group, which will see it making long-form specials for the network.
February 25, 2013

CNN anchor and special correspondent Soledad O’Brien (pictured) has signed a production and distribution deal with CNN for her new production company, Starfish Media Group, which will see the prodco making long-form specials for the network.

O’Brien’s company, which launches in June, is set to make three long-form specials for 2014, including an edition of the network franchise hosted and developed by O’Brien, Black in America.

She will also host the CNN Black in America documentary this year, and her company, along with CNN, will act as the exclusive global distributor of previous docs featuring O’Brien.

Having joined CNN in 2003, O’Brien initally served as a morning show co-host, and was given her own morning show, Starting Point, which premiered in January of last year. In early February of this year, it was announced that the show would be canceled.

Starfish Media Group will be a 360 media company dedicated to stories that look at issues of race, class, wealth, opportunity, poverty and personal stories, which will be told via long-form reporting for CNN and other outlets, as well as theatrical and scripted television projects.

“We greatly value Soledad’s experience, and her first-rate storytelling will continue to be an asset to CNN,” said Jeff Zucker, president of CNN Worldwide. “Documentaries and long-form storytelling are important to our brand and we’re anticipating more of what we’ve come to expect from her – riveting content.”

“At CNN, I am grateful to have been able to tell often underreported stories and confront difficult topics,” added O’Brien. “In the new production venture, I will continue to shine a light on what we all find most interesting about America.”

About The Author
Daniele Alcinii is a news reporter at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joins the rs team with journalism experience following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.