NEW YORK, March 27, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Ben Silverman's multimedia entertainment studio Electus, an operating business of IAC (Nasdaq: IACI), today unveiled highlights of its unscripted television programming slate. These include priority titles from an ever-growing slate that will be brought to market at MIPTV in Cannes, France, which begins on April 1st. This new block of television programming includes successful third party U.S. series that Electus has acquired for international distribution as well as original series created by Electus and its creative partners. Electus International, Electus' global distribution arm will handle sales of the slate.
"We are thrilled to bring to market such wide ranging content from some of the biggest broadcasters in the U.S. including NBC, Discovery, TLC, Spike, TBS, CMT and GSN to name a few," said John Pollak, President of Electus International. "Having the opportunity to bring these series to the international market is a testament to our mandate of putting creative and commercial success at the forefront of our efforts."
Electus has acquired the rights to distribute various successful U.S. formats for international distribution, including:
- My Big Redneck Vacation (CMT): From the creators of My Big Redneck Wedding comes a new series chronicling the adventures of one countrified, loud-mouthed family from the swamps of Louisiana as they take over a $4 million house in the Hamptons of New York. Watch as this mud-slidin', four-wheelin', beer-slingin', dixie-whistlin' crew learns how to live the high-life and show them Yankees how the South gets down. From polo lessons to wine-tasting to a truly Hamptons nuptial, this rowdy bunch is in for a summer they'll never forget on My Big Redneck Vacation. The series, which airs on CMT, is on pace to be the network's highest rated original series ever.
- Hook, Line & Sisters (TLC): We all know that commercial fishing in Alaska is a deadly job and we also know that it's mostly a man's world. But there are a few brave women working right alongside them! Hook, Line and Sisters is an all new reality series that tackles the dangerous world of commercial fishing in Alaska from a whole new perspective –that of a woman.
- Fight Quest (Discovery): Fight Quest is a reality fight series which follows Mixed Martial Artists Jimmy Smith and Doug Anderson as they travel the globe learning different styles of martial arts, and immersing themselves in the native cultures along the way. Each episode chronicles them training with masters of a fighting style before exhibiting what they learned in a final demonstration. Fight Quest crosses the globe with episodes filmed in China, Thailand, France, Korea, India, Japan, Mexico, Indonesia, Israel, Hong Kong, Brazil, USA and the Philippines. This series was produced by Discovery Networks and is owned by CSI Sports (New York) through their FIGHT SPORTS brand.
- Xtreme Martial Arts (Discovery): Xtreme Martial Arts is a program that features the extreme and technical fighting talents of martial artists while exploring the biomechanical mysteries of the fighting arts. Cutting edge animation helps reveal the true power involved in martial arts combat! This series was produced by Discovery Networks and is owned by CSI Sports (New York) through their FIGHT SPORTS brand.
- Improv-A-Ganza (GSN): On GSN's Improv-A-Ganza, Drew Carey headlines forty lively, unpredictable and hilarious half-hour episodes of improvised sketch comedy. With a familiar cast of improv talent, including Colin Mochrie and Ryan Stiles, each episode consists of three or four comedy games in front of a live audience, with each segment introduced by a different cast member and involving suggestion and/or participation from the audience.
- Majors & Minors (The Hub): In this groundbreaking music competition series, a dozen super-talented kids ages 10-16 get mentored by some of the biggest artists in music! No one is ever "voted off," but one of them will claim a recording deal and the chance to be featured in a nationwide concert tour. The first season mentors included Will.I.Am, Jennifer Hudson, Avril Lavigne, Leona Lewis, Ryan Tedder, Claude Kelly, Adam Lambert, Jordin Sparks, Colbie Caillat, Mike Posner, Sean Kingston, and Brandy.
Electus' block of original unscripted programming for international distribution includes:
- King of the Nerds (TBS): King of the Nerds, hosted by two of the stars of the movie blockbuster Revenge of the Nerds, Robert Carradine and Curtis Armstrong, is primed to become television's ultimate nerd-off. The show invites competitors spanning the full nerd spectrum to come together to face challenges that will test their intellect, ingenuity, skills and pop-culture prowess. The nerds will first compete as teams before moving on to individual challenges, all with the goal of being named the quintessential master of all things nerdy. TBS has ordered eight episodes of King of the Nerds which is slated to premiere on TBS in early 2013. The series is executive-produced by Electus (Ben Silverman, Jimmy Fox) and 5x5 Media (Rick Ringbakk, Tod Mesirow, Craig Armstrong) as well as Carradine and Armstrong.
- Car Lot Cowboy (Spike TV): Car Lot Cowboy, slated to air on Spike TV, showcases renowned auto dealership 'doctor' Tom Stuker, whose innovative and brazen methods for selling cars has made him a venerable legend in the industry. Stuker has traversed the globe, logging over 10 million air miles, visiting over 1,500 auto dealerships in desperate need of his guidance. In each episode, Stuker, along with his car-savvy team, travel to a different dealership in financial straits. With his signature black cowboy hat and boots, Stuker's larger-than-life persona is instrumental in galvanizing the attention and respect of the dealership employees. His blunt talk may rub some of the salespeople the wrong way, but his tough-love approach and keen sense of the business ultimately delivers unmatchable success. The series is created and developed by Vem Miller in association with Vem's Sweatshop Media and executive produced by Electus (Ben Silverman) and 5x5 Media (Rick Ringbakk, Craig Armstrong, Tod Mesirow).
- Fashion Star (NBC): Fashion Star, hosted and executive produced by successful entrepreneur and supermodel Elle Macpherson, gives 14 unknown designers a life-changing opportunity to win a multi-million dollar contract to launch their clothing lines in Macy's, H&M and Saks Fifth Avenue – three of the largest retailers in the U.S. Contestants are put to the test to see how they react in a variety of real-world scenarios to determine who has the vision and desire to build a fashion empire. With top experts Jessica Simpson, Nicole Richie and John Varvatos as their guides and mentors throughout the process, competing designers have to be as adept in the business of fashion as they are in their creativity. Each episode kicks off with an exhilarating fashion show featuring musical performances, dancers, and models in front of a live studio audience. Every fashion show is built around a weekly challenge that is designed to further develop each designer's brand. The buyers serve as judges, making on-the-spot decisions each week as they bid against each other to purchase the work of these up-and-coming designers. The night following each episode, the winning designs are available online and in retail stores in the U.S. In the end, the designer who most successfully combines fashion and business will become the next "Fashion Star" and receive the prize of a lifetime – an exclusive capsule line in each of the three retailers. The show is executive-produced by Elle Macpherson, Electus (Ben Silverman), The Magical Elves (Jane Lipsitz, Dan Cutforth), 5x5 Media (Rick Ringbakk) and EJD Productions (EJ Johnston, James Deutch) Fashion Star airs Tuesday nights 10-11 PM on NBC.
- Mob Wives Seasons One & Two (VH1): Mob Wives, currently airing its second season in the U.S. on VH1, follows the lives of six women having to carry on while their husbands or fathers are in prison for "alleged" Mob-related activities. They are struggling with their identities, their own families and their futures as they try to do what's best for themselves and their children. As they now attempt to pursue their own ambitions, the women find comfort among those who understand their stories most: each other. Created and produced by Jennifer Graziano of JustJenn Productions, Mob Wives is produced by The Weinstein Company (Bob Weinstein, Harvey Weinstein, Meryl Poster), Electus (Ben Silverman, Jimmy Fox) and Left/Right (Banks Tarver, Ken Druckerman and Nina Diaz).
Electus is the first integrated multimedia entertainment studio to unite producers, creators, advertisers and distributors under one roof and produce all forms of content for distribution across a variety of platforms around the world. Headed by Ben Silverman in partnership with IAC [NASDAQ: IACI], the company connects advertisers, distributors and content creators early on in the development process, enabling marketers and advertisers to be a true partner in campaigns and content creation. Electus International, the global distribution arm of Electus, is responsible for all international sales and distribution for Electus' programming and its studio partners as well as programs and formats from other well-known 3rd party providers. For more information on Electus, visit www.electus.com.