People/Biz

Extra: Starz promotes Kalle to president, intl. networks; Media Headquarters adds to team

Starz names Superna Kalle president, international networks Starz has announced the promotion of Superna Kalle to the position of president, international networks. Kalle (pictured) previously served as Starz’s executive vice president for ...
July 8, 2021

Starz names Superna Kalle president, international networks

Starz has announced the promotion of Superna Kalle to the position of president, international networks.

Kalle (pictured) previously served as Starz’s executive vice president for international digital networks, joining in 2018 to lead the international expansion of Starzplay, which is now available in 58 countries.

Kalle will report directly to Starz President and CEO Jeffrey Hirsch, overseeing the international division’s growth for Starzplay including programming and production on Starzplay’s international original series, distribution, marketing and publicity, as well as Lionsgate Play.

“Superna is an incredibly talented and strategic executive who has demonstrated her acute business expertise to help expand Starz into the global premium SVOD service it is today,” Hirsch said in a news release. “She has done a superb job of building a successful international division from the ground up that has formed strategic distribution partnerships and international original productions that contribute to our company’s innovation and distinction. I look forward to even greater global growth under her continued leadership.”

Lowerre joins Lionsgate for TV and digital role

Lionsgate has hired former Amazon Prime Video executive Ryan Lowerre to be its new president of domestic television and digital distribution, the final part of the company’s restructuring of its worldwide TV and digital distribution operations.

Lowerre will oversee the distribution and licensing of Liongate’s film and TV library to clients in the SVOD, AVOD, basic cable and free TV space across the U.S. and Canada. He’ll report to Jim Packer, Lionsgate’s president of worldwide television distribution.

Previous to joining Lionsgate, Lowerre had two stints at Amazon Prime Video, most recently as head of licensed content – U.S., where he was responsible for the licensed content portfolio. During his time there, he licensed first-run TV series and led the company’s content acquisition efforts for global expansion in the VOD/EST space.

“The demand for premium content is increasing all the time as more new buyers emerge to compete in the domestic marketplace,” Packer said in a news release. “Ryan’s past work experience and business relationships make him the perfect candidate to help Lionsgate capitalize on the growing opportunities of an ever-changing media environment. He understands the needs of our buyers and brings a fresh and invigorating perspective to the team and our domestic business.”

Rodnyansky slate includes doc co-produced by Soderbergh

Russian producer Alexander Rodnyansky unveiled a slate of feature films set for production in 2021 and 2022, including a documentary co-produced by Oscar winner Steven Soderbergh.

In addition to several new scripted film projects, Rodnyansky will produce NEOOONOWWW, a documentary film from experimental director Godfrey Reggio (the Qatsi trilogy). The film focuses on the forging of a new culture in a world threatened by ecological collapse and unprecedented technological transformation. The doc will feature music by Philip Glass and was co-produced by Soderbergh and Rodnyansky.

“When Steven reached out to me and told me about Godfrey Reggio’s new film, I never doubted for a second that this is a chance that I absolutely cannot miss. I have always been a passionate admirer of Godfrey’s films and it is an honor for me to collaborate with him and Steven on this project,” Rodnyansky said in a release.

Media Headquarters bolsters leadership team

Toronto-based prodco Media Headquarters has announced changes to its leadership team with Melanie Brobyn promoted to the position of executive producer and vice president, industry veteran Dave Shippel being named chief financial officer, and Drew Carnath joining the company as a development producer.

Brobyn has been with Media Headquarters for over 13 years as vice president of production and business affairs. In her new role, she will oversee the company’s slate of productions from inception to completion and act as liaison between the development, production, financial, legal and communications teams.

Shippel has held senior financial leadership roles at some of Canada’s top entertainment companies including Nelvana, Epitome Pictures and DHX Media. In his role as CFO, Shippel will manage all financial activities and support the company’s growth.

Carnwath is a Toronto-based producer and writer with experience on multiple award-winning unscripted TV series for both independent prodcos and in-house at CBC and Bell Media.

“Since the repurchase of Media Headquarters, the company has entered an exciting new chapter, growing rapidly and pursuing new opportunities and partnerships,” said Media Headquarters founder and CEO Robert Cohen in a release. “We have the largest and most diverse slate of content yet and these new promotions and hires will support our ongoing development and production goals.”

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for HMV.com. As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.

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