Indie distribution company DRG — owned by the nice entertainment group and backed by Modern Times Group — has partnered with BAFTA-winning content and incubation company Wildseed Studios, founded by Miles Bullough and Jesse Cleverly in 2013. The agreement will see DRG provide uncapped funding for a fresh round of project pilots in Q1 2017, and become the distributor for Wildseed’s content.
Pilot concept submissions are now open through Wildseed’s online portal at wild.sd/submissions.
“We are constantly looking for exciting opportunities that both provide us with a new pipeline of content and that encourage us to look at different ways of working in our changing world,” said Richard Halliwell, DRG’s Managing Director.
“Our new relationship with Wildseed is ripping up the ‘distributor rulebook’; we are investing in creators with no ‘mainstream’ experience and no access to market – who are amazingly talented and just need some seed investment to gain momentum. DRG is evolving to become more inventive and creative, and less risk-averse, in order to take full advantage of the fast-moving developments in the digital space. Miles and Jesse are pioneers in this evolving business and we are fascinated to be a part of the ride and see where this joint journey takes us both.”
Wildseed Studios aims to uncover new content creators and original ideas designed to work across the growing number of digital platforms, with a focus on scripted content with appeal to millennial audiences falling under comedy, genre fiction and kids’ 6-11 in particular. The company typically invests up to to £10,000 initially, and then either grows the franchise themselves post-pilot, or connects creators with platform partners to develop the project further. Since opening its submissions portal in 2014, Wildseed has received more than 3,000 project proposals, picked up 30, published 20, and has enjoyed a 60% pickup rate from premium platform partners.
Success stories to come out of the incubator include 2016 Children’s BAFTA-winning short Good as Goaled/Lottie Bearshout for Disney XD, Children’s BAFTA-nominated series Counterfeit Cat for Disney XD and Teletoon Canada, Tales of the Serengeti and Wolf Jenkins for BBC3, an untitled pilot for Channel 4 from the creator of Wildseed pilot Shambles, and horror webseries Philip Human, picked up by US SVOD service Fullscreen.
“We have had a very busy and successful four years, introducing some fantastic new talent and ideas to the world, gaining commissions and winning awards. But we felt the time was right to go up a gear and this partnership with DRG is effectively allowing us to launch phase two of our business, and to reload the Wildseed incubator,” said co-Founder Bullough.
“Not only do we have extra investment, but also DRG’s team of experts at our disposal, who will help us meet new buyers and platforms and share developments in the international marketplace. We met a number of potential partners over the past few months but absolutely loved DRG’s buccaneering and enterprising attitude, its enthusiasm for what we are trying to achieve – and its genuine passion for searching for brilliant new talent. We are extremely excited about Wildseed’s future and can’t wait for new submissions to start rolling in.”
Click here to see some previous coverage of Wildseed Studios projects.