“Syfy Ventures and Universal Pictures are joining forces to create Syfy Films, a new film company that will develop and produce Syfy branded theatrical motion pictures to be distributed by Universal. The new entity will leverage Syfy’s genre expertise to produce human and relatable theatrical releases from the worlds of science fiction, fantasy, Supernatural and horror.
Beginning in 2012, Syfy Films will distribute one to two films a year through Universal Pictures.
The announcement was made today by Dave Howe, President Syfy and Chiller, Mark Stern, Executive Vice President of Original Programming, Syfy and Co-Head of Content for Universal Cable Productions, Universal Pictures Chairman Adam Fogelson and Co-Chairman Donna Langley.
“We know there is an incredible consumer appetite for genre content as proven by the top grossing box office films,” said Howe and Stern. “Partnering our brand with the theatrical talent of Universal Pictures, a premier motion picture company, will allow us to exploit our combined expertise and resources to create commercially successful quality films that have the potential to become great franchises for the whole company.”
“Syfy has been incredibly successful in finding ways to produce compelling entertainment for a specific audience,” said Fogelson and Langley. “Joining together to find moderately budgeted projects that we can develop using their expertise and their brand is a great opportunity for both of our companies.”
Mark Stern and Donna Langley will jointly oversee the operation. Universal and Syfy are currently looking for a production executive to run Syfy Films, which will be based on the Universal Lot.”
Universal and SyFy are already connected at the corporate level, with a number of the cable net’s series coming from Universal Media Studios and affiliated production companies.
The cable entity does offer “SyFy Original” features, but their role is usually limited to providing funding and sometimes general premise ideas to independent producers, such as with Roger Corman’s SHARKTOPUS. It will be interesting to see if their features films aim a little higher.