Docs

Extra: Hit+ Run sells series to Netflix; Impossible Factual names new doc head

Hit + Run sells “Swap Shop” to Netflix New Jersey-based prodco Hit + Run announced the sale of a new series, Swap Shop, to Netflix on Tuesday (Oct. 12). The series will premiere ...
October 12, 2021

Hit + Run sells “Swap Shop” to Netflix

New Jersey-based prodco Hit + Run announced the sale of a new series, Swap Shop, to Netflix on Tuesday (Oct. 12).

The series will premiere on the streaming platform in November, and it follows a group of men and women who depend on a long-running Tennessee radio show to buy, sell and swap items like cars, comics, statues and more.

Swap Shop is one of those rare, feel good shows with cross-generational appeal. With humor and heart, the characters are passionate and the scores are limitless,” said Rob Shaftel, founder and executive producer for Hit + Run.

Jerry Carita is also an executive producer for the series along with Shaftel.

Hit + Run has had a busy year with multiple projects in production from the prodco including season three of Critter Fixers: Country Vets for NatGeo Wild, and the recently announced Pop Goes the Vet with Dr. Joya also for NatGeo Wild and Appetite for Adventure for NatGeo.

Impossible Factual taps Adam Luria to be head of documentary

UK-based indie Impossible Factual is expanding its team, naming Adam Luria as its new head of documentary.

In his new role, Luria (pictured) will be tasked with bolstering Impossible Factual’s unscripted slate and building on the company’s reputation for delivering innovative and ambitious factual programming.

Luria brings more than 15 years of experience across a variety of factual TV genres in a career that’s spanned documentary, specialist factual, factual entertainment, lifestyle and children’s programming. He has produced singles and series for broadcasters on both sides of the Atlantic, as well as in mainland Europe. Most recently with Impossible Factual, Luria developed and directed a two-part true crime series for ITV1, slated for broadcast in May 2022.

“We’re really excited that Adam is joining — this is a new role and it’s a significant moment in taking Impossible Factual to the next level. We’ve worked with Adam on several projects over the last few years, so we know he’s someone who brings new skills, but also feels like an organic fit with the team and the ethos of the company we are building,” said Jonathan Drake, Impossible Factual’s managing director in a release.

Insight TV partners with China Media Group for Olympics doc series

Amsterdam-based Insight TV has announced a deal with China Media Group, Film, Drama, and Documentary Programming Center (known as CCTV-9) to co-produce Winter Gold, a new documentary series about the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.

The series (6 x 50 minutes) will focus on a group of international athletes as they prepare for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics in events including figure skating, alpine skiing and snowboarding. The copro series is described as an intimate study of athletes from the U.S., UK, China, Mexico, Russia and the Netherlands as they balance competition and glory with private, personal cost. The Insight TV crew is currently filming the series across all athletes’ home locations.

Winter Gold marks our first co-production in China and one of our most exciting series to date — as there are few bigger projects to chronicle than the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. This seminal documentary series will track the journey of six incredible athletes, blending intimate storytelling with outstanding production value,” said Arun Maljaars, Insight TV’s vice president of content and channels in a statement.

Whistle Studios lines up football docuseries The Academy

Global sports and entertainment media company Team Whistle has announced a partnership with sports marketing company Wav Sports and Hall of Fame Resort & Entertainment Company to launch a new football-themed documentary series, The Academy.

The six-episode longform docuseries will follow athletes in the second season of the NFL Alumni Academy, the first-ever in-season player replacement and training program for aspiring NFL players at the Hall of Fame Village powered by Johnson Controls. The Academy will give viewers a behind-the-scenes look into the training techniques, strength programs and the mental toughness required by the participants as they fight to make their pro sports dreams a reality.

The Academy will be executive produced by Mike Basone and Melanie Capacia Johnson from Whistle Studios, Olivia Steier from Hall of Fame Resort & Entertainment Company and Dean Dalton and Brian Klaasmeyer from Wav Sports & Entertainment. The series is currently in production with a planned release in early 2022. The companies are currently in discussions regarding a distribution partner for the series.

In addition to The Academy docuseries, Whistle Studios will also develop corresponding short-form videos from the NFL Alumni Academy to be posted on its social media platforms, which collectively reach more than 629 million people.

“Whistle Studios is focused on telling relatable and inspiring sports stories that show the triumph of the human spirit through struggle, perseverance, and growth,” said Mike Basone, head of unscripted at Whistle Studios in a release. “The journey the athletes of the NFL Alumni Academy undergo to become NFL ready is arduous with moments of both conflict and elation. We are excited to be partnering with the Hall of Fame Resort & Entertainment Company as well as WaV Sports to tell these important untold stories.”

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