Participant Media to Launch TV Network in 2013 Targeting Millennials
Participant Media, the leading provider of entertainment that inspires and accelerates change and known for such award-winning films as An Inconvenient Truth, Food, Inc., The Help, Steven Spielberg's Lincoln and the upcoming Promised Land, will further expand its growing industry footprint with the Summer 2013 launch of a cable network targeting the millennial generation. The announcement was made today by Participant Chairman and Founder Jeff Skoll and Chief Executive Officer Jim Berk.
Skoll said, "The goal of Participant is to tell stories that serve as catalysts for social change. With our television channel, we can bring those stories into the homes of our viewers every day. "
Participant Media has completed the purchase of The Documentary Channel and has entered into an agreement to acquire the distribution assets of Halogen TV from The Inspiration Networks. The services, once combined and rebranded, will reach an estimated 40+ million subscribers. Terms of the agreements were not disclosed.
"The creation of this network is a natural evolution for Participant. After nearly a decade of telling compelling, entertaining stories on the big screen, a television channel allows us to build upon our existing film, digital and social action resources to create a continuing conversation with an audience that is interested in staying connected and engaged with the world around them," commented Berk. "I am excited that Evan Shapiro, who joined Participant in May after serving as President of IFC and Sundance Channel, will head the new network."
The channel will launch next summer, offering a thought-provoking and entertaining slate of original and acquired programming catering to the tastes and minds of millennials 18-34. Participant is developing a diverse programming slate with award-winning producer Brian Graden; The Jim Henson Company's Brian Henson; Oscar winning director Davis Guggenheim, columnist and blogger Meghan McCain; Oscar nominated humorist Morgan Spurlock; award-winning journalist and doc filmmaker Gotham Chopra; celebrated filmmaker and screenwriter Mary Harron; writer/director Timothy Scott Bogart, and Cineflix Media, a leading international TV producer and distributor in which Participant Media controls an equity interest.
Shapiro said: "Our content will be specifically designed for the viewers that the pay TV eco-system is most at risk of losing. We all know that Millennials are changing how media is consumed. However, they also have the strong desire and inimitable capacity to help change the world. Our research shows that there is a whitespace in the television landscape and we believe that a destination for 'the next greatest generation' will be a win for our affiliate partners, advertisers and the creative community."