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WildBear Entertainment sets up sales arm, remains open to third-party distribution

WildBear wildlife docuseries Under the Sea

Australian factual specialist WildBear Entertainment has set up a distribution arm ahead of next month’s Cannes event Mipcom and has already secured its first deals with international broadcasters.

WildBear CEO Michael Tear is heading WildBear International from Canberra, with a start-up sales team based in Europe.

This is made up of Edwina Thring and Margaret Yoshida of Wild Thring Media, WildBear’s long-term coproduction and pre-sales finance partner.

While establishing the new business, the WildBear International team has secured various deals for some of its lead launch titles, produced by WildBear Entertainment.

All three seasons of Demolition Down Under (18×60′), which was commissioned by Discovery Australia and New Zealand, have been acquired by Discovery UK, Discovery Germany and Viasat, following earlier pre-sales to Mediawan in France and Network 10 in Australia.

World’s Most Toxic Animals (2×60′), meanwhile, has been acquired by Sky Nature in the UK, Sky Italia, Viasat in Europe, Discovery Asia and RTP in Portugal after being pre-bought by NTV in Germany.

Rise & Fall: The Turning Points of WW2 (6×60′), which examines 50 major milestones of the Second World War in chronological order, has been picked up by ProSieben in Germany, Mediawan in France, A+E Italy, RTP in Portugal, Viasat, Canal Historia in Spain, Foxtel in Australia and The Military Channel in China.

WildBear International’s slate also includes history, natural history and obs-doc titles such as The World War (8×60′), Bomber Terror of WW2 (6×60′), Under the Sea (4×60′) and Mega Mechanics (10×60′).

The sales arm comes after WildBear Entertainment has produced more than 150 hours of factual programming per annum in recent years, sold by distributors including Passion Distribution, Off the Fence, ABC Commercial, ZDF Enterprises and PBS International.

WildBear said this situation would remain unchanged for the foreseeable future, as it is keen to continue maximising its IP by placing each title with the best-fit distribution partner, including its own, on a case-by-case basis.

Tear said: “Financing production is an increasingly complex and timely business, often with many moving parts. By establishing WildBear International, we are providing another route for both funding and finding international viewers for our content and see this development in a similar light to adding a new distribution partner to our roster.

“This is an exciting time for WildBear as it continues to grow its output, reputation and international footprint, but our focus will always remain on having the best possible distribution partner for each title we produce.”


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