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Tuchman, Rialto Channel form global JV

Rialto’s indy film line-up includes Channing Godfrey Peoples’ Miss Juneteenth

Media entrepreneur Bruce Tuchman and New Zealand’s Rialto Channel have set up a joint venture to launch an international streaming service featuring independent film and TV.

Rialto International is a 50-50 JV to bring Rialto branded streaming, SVoD, AVoD and linear television services of “premium indie content” to countries and territories worldwide.

The venture kicks off with the Australian launch of a Rialto AVoD service in partnership with Samsung.

Bruce Tuchman

New Zealand-owned and -programmed, Rialto Channel is a specialty, commercial-free network dedicated to high-quality independent films, documentaries and television series.

Launched in 1999 as the Sundance Channel, it rebranded as Rialto Channel in November 2002.

Tuchman, formerly president of Sundance Channel Global, AMC Global and MGM Networks, serves as co-chairman of the JV.

Other content services the JV will offer to platforms targeting “cinema aficionados” will include 24/7 localised linear Rialto networks and a British Film Institute (BFI) Rialto-branded streaming app.

Developed for the Asia-Pacific market, the app will showcase selected UK and world contemporary films from the BFI content archive, which is described as the world’s largest library of film and TV series.

“The sheer number of available independent titles and the prolific pace at which they continue to be produced will provide pay TV and streaming platforms with sorely needed content, even more so as the supply of major studio releases has dwindled in this age of Covid,” said Tuchman.

“While the supply and demand grows, you have few indie-specific channels and service providers. Rialto International will aggressively fill this void. The Rialto Channel is a perfect brand to take global since it will appeal to indie-loving audiences worldwide and meet the surge in deman.”

Roger Wyllie, CEO of Rialto Channel and co-chairman of Rialto International, added: “We have reached a point where the combination of world cinema attracting a growing, broader audience and the present need for fresh content supply has placed an even greater demand for independent content, which has truly taken the world by storm in recent years, as seen by the incredible Oscar successes of such films as Parasite and Moonlight.

“These titles, along with a growing number of marquee films, are the kind of first-rate content that can be expected from Rialto on our network dedicated to independent stories. Audiences will always know what they’re getting from the Rialto brand: consistent high quality. And instead of having to surf channels and platforms to find this content, they will appreciate the convenience of turning to one source for their viewing pleasure.”

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