EXCLUSIVE: How can Hollywood PR agencies and national magazines stay vibrant in the fast-changing digital age? By being as flexible as a gymnast. Madica Productions, sister company to PR firm Sunshine Sachs, has partnered with Content 23 and People Productions to produce The Castle Next Door – The Novogratz Family Takes Hollywood, a 10-episode reality series that will stream simultaneously on People.com and be promoted across the magazine’s platforms. The series follows Robert and Cortney Novogratz, known for designing boutique hotels and residential properties around the world and starring on shows on Bravo and HGTV, as they move from New York to renovate a 1920s-era castle in the Hollywood Hills as their new home. All 10 episodes will be available March 23, and the April 4 edition of People will run a feature on the clan.
With content distribution no longer the exclusive domain of TV, this seems an inventive way for a popular national magazine to broaden its revenue potential by launching a series and using its multiplatform promotional clout to get eyeballs as the Novogratz couple and their seven children overhaul the castle and the kids transition to L.A. It’s the kind of serial that easily could have landed on E! or Bravo. Madica’s Managing Director Jeff Tahler and Sunshine Sachs CEO Shawn Sachs will serve as executive producers, along with Eric Conte and Daniel Weinreich of Content 23. Sunshine Sachs’ Damiano DeMonte will be associate producer.
The PR agency Sunshine Sachs reps the Novogratz family, and this became part of Madica’s strategy for developing content, which includes nonscripted and digital series. The idea fell into People‘s goal to tell stories not just in print, said Jess Cagle, editorial director of People and Entertainment Weekly.
“This is a perfect example of the type of synergy we envisioned when we launched Madica,” says Sachs. “There are a number of individuals across both Sunshine Sachs and Madica who are responsible for putting this project together, not the least of which is the Novogratz family, who continue to show the world their on-camera appeal,” adds Tahler. “We look forward to working with People to tell the next chapter of their story.”
Said the Novogratz duo: “The construction project has been a labor of love. We are proud to have a platform like People to showcase every detail that went into the process of creating our dream home.”