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Netflix sweetens deal with Sugar

Maniac launched on Netflix last month

Global streamer Netflix has signed a multi-year first-look film deal with Michael Sugar, one of the exec producers of its Jonah Hill and Emma Stone dark comedy miniseries Maniac.

Under his Sugar23 label, Sugar and head of production Ashley Zalta will create features, with the SVoD giant having first option on their output.

The first project to emerge from the creative pact will be the Steven Soderbergh-directed The Laundromat, a film that tackles the unearthing of the Panama Papers in 2016, from which journalists around the world exposed corrupt financial practices within offshore companies.

Sugar has an established relationship with Netflix having exec produced a number of its high-profile series besides Maniac, including 13 Reasons Why and The OA. He is also currently developing Netflix projects Tell Me Everything and Hummingbird Salamander outside his new deal, and has a first-look TV deal with US firm Anonymous Content. Alongside his Netflix work, Sugar23 is in production on Apple series Dickinson.

Scott Stuber, head of Netflix’s film group, said the company had “already benefited” from Sugar’s “smart, bold choices” on the series side.

Sugar said he was keen to “make daring, thought-provoking, zeitgeist-defining films” with the streaming kingpin. “Netflix is the perfect partner for Sugar23 because they have demonstrated a willingness to take chances, and our company places tremendous value on creating bold content,” he added. “Ashley and I have had an extremely fulfilling experience with Netflix in the past and I am confident the sky is the limit for what we can accomplish with this new partnership.”



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