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Relativity TV becomes Critical

Relativity Media’s TV operation has relaunched as an indie studio with a new name, having emerged from bankruptcy proceedings late last year.

Tom Forman

Tom Forman

The division, whose previous CEO Tom Forman remains on board, will be known as Critical Content and is backed by investment firms including Anchorage Capital, Luxor Capital and Falcon Investment Advisors.

Forman revealed he would be in charge of the new outfit last year and has signed to a multi-year deal, along with Andrew Marcus, previously MD, who becomes president and chief operating officer.

The LA-based firm, now a separate entity from the rest of the Relativity group, without debt, will continue to focus on scripted and unscripted series.

The deal will also give Critical US$75m to expand the business via acquisitions, with overall deals and staff additions also on the agenda.

Critical’s slate features an array of shows including Tia Mowry at Home for Cooking Channel, Home Free for Fox and Showtime’s Gigolos, with an additional 46 projects lined up. The unit is also behind CBS series Limitless and MTV’s Catfish.

Forman said that with “only a few remaining truly independent production companies, we are well positioned to capitalise on a historic time in the entertainment industry.

“Critical really is the best of all worlds – fully independent, totally nimble and very well financed.”

The CEO described the deal as marking a “new chapter as an independent, well-capitalised business that is extremely well positioned to achieve both near-term growth and long-term success.

“We’re fully independent of our former parent company in an era of increasing media consolidation and much more nimble and flexible as a result.”

The hedge funds haven taken on the TV division, worth around US$125m, having been owed more than US$360m by Relativity.

The rest of the company, which filed for bankruptcy protection towards the end of July, is now being reorganised around the remaining assets, primarily its movie arm.

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