People/Biz

National Geographic, Will Smith’s Westbrook Studios ink unscripted deal

National Geographic has signed a five-year first-look deal on unscripted content with Will Smith’s Westbrook Studios. The agreement was announced by National Geographic Content President Courteney Monroe on Wednesday (August 18) during ...
August 18, 2021

National Geographic has signed a five-year first-look deal on unscripted content with Will Smith’s Westbrook Studios.

The agreement was announced by National Geographic Content President Courteney Monroe on Wednesday (August 18) during the company’s TCA summer session. The agreement covers the development of unscripted original projects in the adventure, exploration, travel and science genres for all of the company’s TV platforms and Nat Geo-produced Disney+ Originals.

The announcement comes ahead of the premiere of the new Smith-fronted non-fiction series Welcome to Earth, produced by Westbrook Studios along with Darren Aronofsky’s Protozoa Pictures and Jane Root‘s Nutopia, which is slated to premiere on Disney+ later this year.

The first-look deal was spearheaded by Terence Carter, Westbrook’s co-president and head of television, and Alan Eyres, National Geographic’s senior vice president of development and production. The partnership between Nat Geo and Westbrook Studios was brokered by Creative Artists Agency (CAA).

“Having spent the past two years working with Will and the team at Westbrook Studios (along with Darren Aronofsky and Nutopia) on Welcome to Earth, we are thrilled to be expanding our relationship with them and entering into a long-term partnership to produce blockbuster nonfiction content,” Monroe said in a release. “Will and Westbrook share our passion for telling bold, best-in-class stories that ignite curiosity and inspire people to explore and care about our world, and we can’t wait to see where our next adventures together take us.”

Added Westbrook’s Carter: “Will and I are thrilled to partner with National Geographic to bring the astonishing imagery of nature and science to screens around the world. We strive to empower artists to tell stories that connect humanity, and Courteney and the entire Nat Geo team share that vision.”

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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