Former Covert Media CEO, Annapurna Productions COO and QED co-founder Paul Hanson has partnered with Elan Freedman of Surge Licensing, development executive Ian McGloin and content financing executive Asa Greenberg to launch Capacitor Studios.
Backed by capital from Europe and Asia, the new venture is a next-generation studio that will create and scale entertainment and consumer product franchises. The company takes a holistic, 360-degree approach to IP that integrates consumer products licensing with TV/OTT series and feature film production.
Capacitor will launch with a slate of episodic and feature titles for children’s, family and YA audiences, in partnership with leaders from the toy, traditional publishing, digital publishing, video game and hobby game industries.
Initial projects include an animated series based on the global toy brand Feisty Pets, with Michelle Raimo Kouyate (former President of Production for Sony Animation, where she oversaw Hotel Transylvania 1 & 2 and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2, and prior to that was an executive producer on Puss in Boots for DreamWorks Animation) attached as a producer.
One of the company’s first feature titles is an animated and live-action hybrid based on the designer vinyl toy phenomenon, KidRobot. Matt Ember and Tom Astle (Home) adapted the screenplay and Clio Award-winning commercial veteran Rob Rugan will direct.
“It all starts with great storytelling that turns audiences into rabid fans. That passion drives a desire for further engagement with a brand or franchise, potentially including toys and other consumer products, video games, hobby games and publishing,” said Hanson. “With world-class production and licensing groups under the same roof, we are uniquely suited to deliver tons of value to the global marketplace.”
Hanson will serve as CEO, segueing from Covert Media. Greenberg, who was entertainment group head of a mid-market hedge fund and an executive producer on Blade Runner 2049, will serve as the company’s Head of Corporate Development. Ian McGloin, a seasoned entertainment executive, formerly of Scott Rudin Productions and DreamWorks’ Wild Child Films, will serve as Head of Content Strategy.
Elan Freedman of Surge Licensing, the agency behind the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise, will oversee the company’s IP, franchise and brand management activities. Mark Freedman, founder of Surge Licensing and architect of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise, will oversee all licensing activities as the company’s joint venture partner.
Elan Freedman added, “Independent IP creators, including those with tremendous brands, have been disconnected from the global entertainment world, leaving licensors with very few strategic options. By blending our collective backgrounds in IP, consumer products and content, our team is poised to address the needs of living and breathing brands and translate them into media and merchandising powerhouses.”