London lowdown: FremantleMedia Enterprises

David Ellender, CEO
October 1, 2007

David Ellender, CEO

Over the past six years, Fremantle has grown in terms of the number of properties we co-fund, and the value that we cover.

In recent years, we’ve built up coproduction relationships in the US, UK and in Europe, and as far as Japan and Australia.

How do you think the industry will change over the next 10 years?
With the blue-chip end where we’re looking at budgets in excess of £1 million an hour – big event properties like Prehistoric Park – we’re looking at whether there’s an opportunity to extend that brand into the live show space and interact with the consumer. Even in the factual entertainment end of the business, maybe taking some of the lifestyle talent out on the road, like a chef to a public arena to do a cooking show.

We’re expanding our home entertainment business, but we’re also getting into digital distribution, electronic sell-throughs, download-to-own, download-to-rent, and our own portal for Web-based consumers. Admittedly that can be sensitive when you’re dealing with retailers because it’s direct competition, however this is a way for us to get our inventory out to the consumer where we can’t with a retailer if they don’t have enough shelf space.

In terms of delivery to the consumers, we’re looking at how to interface more with them. Here in the uk we have just launched our own comedy portal – maybe there are opportunities to get directly to the consumer in other genres, and factual is probably one of them. Our comedy portal is an experiment; it’s not going to deliver huge amounts of revenue, but it’s a great opportunity to learn more about that medium and that marketplace.

About The Author
Andrew Tracy joined Realscreen as associate editor in 2021, following 17 years as managing editor of the award-winning international film magazine Cinema Scope. From 2010 to 2020 he also held the position of senior editor at the Toronto International Film Festival, where he oversaw the flagship publication for the organization’s year-round Cinematheque programming and edited its first original monograph in a decade, Steve Gravestock’s A History of Icelandic Film. He was a scriptwriter and consultant on the first season of the Vice TV series The Vice Guide to Film, and his writing and reporting have been featured in such outlets as Cinema Scope, Reverse Shot, Sight & Sound, Cineaste, Film Comment, MUBI Notebook, POV, and Montage.