The Movie Network Producer Guidelines

This guide is designed for independent producers who want to pitch series for development and/or are seeking pre-licensing support for feature films from The Movie Network.

SERIES DEVELOPMENT

What we’re looking for

The Movie Network is a pay television service available in eastern Canada delivering premiere access to Hollywood hit movies, new and exclusive HBO content, critically acclaimed Showtime series and first-rate Canadian programming to subscribers.
We look for highly original, entertaining, character-driven, premium programming that appeals to our target demographic of adults (aged 25-54). Formats of interest include high quality dramatic and comedic series, both on-going and limited.
We actively support Canadian writers and independent production companies, and commission only Canadian-based productions, Canadian treaty co-productions and co-ventures. Currently we are only commissioning English-language projects.

Pitch process

All submissions must be accompanied by a Bell Media submission form signed by you (or all parties as the case may be).

In addition, we require the following:

– A clear, concise and easy-to-read description of the project (3-5 pages)
– Any support materials including character descriptions or episode breakdowns
– An explanation of why our audience would want to watch your show
– A list of key creative players (producer, writer, talent)
– A general description of each of the following: type of program (series or one-off), number and length of episodes, production timeframe, financing plan, budget top-sheet, and contact information (email address, mailing address, phone numbers)
– If you have an agent or other representation, please have them contact us

Only completed submissions along with a signed submission form will be acknowledged and reviewed. If there is interest in your project, it may be placed into development where we will require you to further flesh out the idea. The initial review process takes up to six (6) weeks from receipt of your submission and submission form.

We receive hundreds of submissions each year and only a few will be selected. If your submission is not selected for development during the six-week review period, it is deemed withdrawn and we will not have any rights or claims to your submission. We do not retain copies of your submission and it will be returned to you or deleted. Hardcopy submissions will be returned if you provide us with a stamped self-addressed envelope; otherwise, it will be shredded. Electronic submissions will be deleted from our system.

CANADIAN FEATURE FILM LICENSING

PRE-LICENSE:

Licensors (Producers and/or Distributors) are encouraged to seek the support of The Movie
Network (TMN) during the latter stages of development (i.e. polish and packaging phase) or no
later than the start of principal photography. Licence fees will be negotiated on a title-by-title
basis and will reflect TMN’s evaluation of the following elements:

– Strength of script;
– Strength of confirmed cast and other creative elements;
– Production budget (production budgets must exceed $1.5M to be eligible for pre-licensing);
– Skill and track record of creative team and producer(s);
– Level of committed financing;
– Confirmed distribution commitment from a recognized Canadian distributor (including minimum guarantee, P & A commitment, marketing plans, etc.);
– Appropriate fit with TMN programming strategy, scheduling requirements, and target audience.

What we are looking for in a feature film:

As a premium pay television service, we look for highly entertaining, critically-acclaimed premium programming that appeals to our target demographic of adults (aged 25-54) with a priority on bigger budget theatrical films. We actively support Canadian independent production companies, and pre-license only Canadian-based productions, Canadian treaty co-productions and co-ventures. Currently we are only pre-licensing English-language projects.

What we are looking for in a feature documentary:

We have a small appetite for documentary but do pre-buy and acquire a select number of
feature length documentaries every year. We are specifically interested in highly entertaining
pop culture docs with broad audience appeal and potential for theatrical release. We also have
an interest in entertainment related docs about film and music. Typically we do not develop
documentaries so relate to them at licensing stage as per other pre-buys.

How to Submit a Film or Documentary?

All submissions must be accompanied by a Bell Media submission form (or all parties as the case may be) and a TMN Pre-buy Application form. Only completed submissions along with a signed submission form will be acknowledged and reviewed. The initial review process takes up to six (6) weeks from receipt of your submission and submission form.

Contact Information:

Comedy and Factual Projects:
Alison Rheaume
Coordinator, Independent Production, Bell Media
alison.rheaume@bellmedia.ca
(416) 384-2920
299 Queen Street West
TORONTO (ONTARIO) Canada M5V 2Z5

Drama Projects and Feature Films:
Lisa Gotlieb
Coordinator, Independent Production
lisa.gotlieb@bellmedia.ca
(416) 384-2372
299 Queen Street West
TORONTO (ONTARIO) M5V 2Z5

FEATURE FILM DEVELOPMENT:

We do not develop feature films at The Movie Network. If you are looking for development support for your feature film, please note that Bell Media’s feature film development program is managed through the Harold Greenberg Fund (www.bellmedia.ca/harold-greenberg-fund/). Please contact them directly to enquire about development.

© 2014 Bell Media All rights reserved.

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