Fremantle takes majority stake in Wildstar Films | Media Investment | Business | News | Rapid TV News
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The current spate of M&A activity in the UK’s production sector shows no signs of slowing down as leading creator, producer and distributor Fremantle announces it is to take a 51% holding in independent production company Wildstar Films.
FRemantle Wildstar 16 Nov 2022
Wildstar produces premium factual content for global streamers and broadcasters and says it was founded on the simple belief that the natural world is constantly evolving and our job is to keep up and be at the forefront of innovation in natural history and premium factual content.

Led by co-founders Mark Linfield and Vanessa Berlowitz - whose extensive credits include Planet Earth, Frozen Planet, and multiple feature-length films - Wildstar’s recent series launches include America the Beautiful, Epic Adventures with Bertie Gregory, and America’s National Parks for Disney+ and National Geographic. The company is currently in production on two feature-length films for Disneynature and multiple premium series for Disney+ and National Geographic including Queens, Sentient with Darren Aronofsky’s Protozoa Pictures, as well as further series in partnership with Hollywood talent.

“Fremantle is a fantastic fit as a partner – we share a similar culture and the same ambition of working with the best talent on and off screen to make genre defining shows; we’re also really excited that their international teams will help us grow Wildstar and reach more viewers around the world,” said Linfield and Berlowitz in a joint statement commenting on the acquisition.

Fremantle believes that with its global infrastructure, distribution, and specialist support across the 27 territories in which it operates, it can provide the Bristol-based company with the opportunity to build on recent growth and exploit the growing demand for premium factual and specialist factual content from international broadcasters and streaming platforms.

It added that with a slate of high-end projects already in development and production, the new acquisition reaffirms its strategic plans to scale-up its production capabilities in premium documentary films and series, by working with exceptional creatives.

“Within four short years Mark, Vanessa and their team have built Wildstar from a brand new start up to one of the fastest growing, most dynamic, and most imaginative brands in Natural History,” remarked Fremantle UK chief executive officer Simon Andreae. “They bring creative excellence, technical innovation, and true sense of joy to all that they touch. We are thrilled to welcome them to the Fremantle family and to join them in the next exciting step on their journey.”

Over the past 12 months its investment portfolio has included stakes in UK production company Dancing Ledge (The Responder), scripted Italian production company Lux Vide (Devils, Leonardo), international development and production company Fabel (Bosch), Australian-American television production company Eureka Productions (Parental Guidance, Finding Magic Mike) and 12 production labels in Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Denmark from Nordic Entertainment Group (This is Nice Group), Irish production company Element Pictures (Normal People, The Favourite) and documentary powerhouse 72 Films (All or Nothing: Arsenal, 9/11: One Day in America).