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Thunderbird’s Great Pacific Media enters partnership with Original Content Lab

Great Pacific Media (GPM), the factual arm of Canadian studio Thunderbird Entertainment, has entered a multi-year strategic partnership with Original Content Lab (OCL), a newly launched entity led by former Sphere Media exec Sean Connolly.

Sean Connolly

Under the deal, Toronto-based OCL will develop factual and kids’ series intended for the international market, with Vancouver-headquartered GPM set to produce.

The partnership comes as GPM looks to increase its unscripted output. The company is currently in production on eight factual series, including Deadman’s Curse (for History in Canada and Hulu in the US) and Gut Job and Styled (both for HGTV Canada and Hulu). GPM added that the collaboration with unscripted veteran Connolly will enable it to expand its development presence in Toronto.

Connolly was previously the senior VP of development at Toronto-based BGM, which was recently rebranded under the Sphere Media banner. He departed earlier this year and launched OCL this month. His other former roles include VP of development at Canadian production outfits Marblemedia and Our House Media.

Among Connolly’s credits are glass-blowing competition series Blown Away (Netflix), documentary 9/11: Control the Skies (Bell Media, Nat Geo International), paranormal series Haunted Hospitals and Paranormal 911 (both T+E and Discovery TRVL), and kids’ show Riley Rocket (TVO).

GPM president David Way said the pact “will be invaluable in accelerating our development pipeline” of formats, competition series, docudramas and kids’ content.

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