Elvis Costello and Elton John to Make a Television 'Spectacle'

Apr 02, 2008, 01:00 ET from Sundance Channel

    LONDON, NEW YORK and TORONTO, April 2, 2008 /PRNewswire/ -- Two of the
 most respected musicians in the world will collaborate on an extraordinary
 new television series.
     (Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20080402/NYW044 )
     "Spectacle: Elvis Costello with..." will be hosted by its namesake and
 produced in conjunction with Sir Elton John's Rocket Pictures. Elton John
 will be one of the program's Executive Producers.
     The series will air beginning later this year, on CTV in Canada,
 Channel 4 in the UK and Sundance Channel in the US. FremantleMedia
 Enterprises, will handle sales of the show to the rest of the world.
     Conceived to provide a forum for in-depth discussion and performance
 with the most interesting and influential artists and personalities of our
 time, the show fuses the best of talk and music television.
     "Spectacle: Elvis Costello with..." promises to be an unpredictable and
 unprecedented television experience. The series of 13 one-hour programs
 will feature everything from intimate one-on-ones with legendary performers
 and notable newcomers to thematic panel discussions, with a variety of
 performance elements including unique collaborations, acoustic and
 impromptu "illustrative" demonstrations of the creative process, and some
 original interpretations of others' songs by Costello.
     The program's eclecticism and depth reflect its uniquely qualified
 host. Elvis Costello is a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee; a Grammy and
 Ivor Novello Award-winning (and Oscar-nominated) songwriter and performer
 comfortable in almost every genre imaginable; a musicologist of formidable
 breadth and knowledge; a contributor to Vanity Fair Magazine; and a noted
 wit whose stint as guest host on The Late Show with David Letterman won
 rave reviews.
     Explaining his approach to the program, Elvis said, "I'm not interested
 in extracting some dark secret. I'd rather hear about a bright secret, a
 deep love or a curiosity that might be otherwise obscured by fame. This is
 a wonderful opportunity to talk in complete thoughts about music, movies,
 art or even vaudeville, then frame it with unique and illustrative
     Executive Producer Sir Elton John added, "Elvis Costello is the
 foremost expert on popular music. I thought it would be sensational to use
 his knowledge and intelligence to explore the artistry of musicians and
 other fascinating people involved in making great music, as well as true
 music aficionados."
     Consistent with Sir Elton John's long-standing commitment to
 philanthropy and music, the series producers have struck an exciting
 association with the (Product) RED (www.joinred.com) campaign created to
 raise awareness and money for the Global Fund (www.theglobalfund.org) to
 fight AIDS in Africa. Select program excerpts and performances will be
 distributed in a variety of new media and conventional platforms, with a
 portion of the profits directed to the Global Fund.
     "The concept of Elvis Costello hosting a television show was completely
 irresistible to Sundance Channel," commented Larry Aidem, President & CEO.
 "Our viewers are enthusiastic fans of music and love stimulating and
 provocative talk, so it's a fabulous fit."
     "The extraordinarily versatile Elvis Costello and the legendary Elton
 John have joined forces to bring viewers an unprecedented window into the
 world of music," said Susanne Boyce, President, Creative, Content and
 Channels, CTV Inc. "Spectacle will be spectacular -- providing a platform
 for the most acclaimed artists of our time to discuss and demonstrate their
 craft in a unique setting."
     Speaking of the distribution agreement, FremantleMedia Enterprises CEO
 David Ellender said, "Music programming is an important part of the FME
 portfolio and the opportunity to distribute 'Spectacle: Elvis Costello
 with...' is very exciting. Costello is a legendary performer whose
 experience in the music and entertainment industry will not only attract a
 range of internationally renowned iconic performers, but also offer them
 the unique opportunity to join a 'discussion between equals.' This is a
 formula which is sure to appeal to audiences around the world."
     Neil McCallum, Head Of Music for Channel 4, said, "This is a phenomenal
 project involving the world's leading music artists, and we're delighted
 that Channel 4 viewers will be able to witness first hand a compelling mix
 of conversation and unique performances, all brought together by the
 esteemed Elvis Costello."
     "Spectacle: Elvis Costello with..." is a co-production of Rocket
 Pictures, SpyBox Pictures, Prospero Pictures and reinvention entertainment.
 Executive Producers are Sir Elton John, Elvis Costello, David Furnish,
 Steve Hamilton- Shaw, Jordan Jacobs, Martin Katz and Stephen Warden.
 Co-Executive Producer is Alex Coletti.

SOURCE Sundance Channel