Former Film4 head Tessa Ross and former Working Title Television chief Juliette Howell have officially announced the launch of House Productions. The UK-based indie is being established in partnership with BBC Worldwide and the recently formed Access Entertainment. The teaming of Ross and Howell was mooted last summer.
They will work as joint CEO’s on a slate that will include television productions and features. The respected executives have worked together many times over the last 20 years, at the BBC, Channel 4 and at Film4 on projects including Billy Elliot, Shameless, Slumdog Millionaire and The Last King Of Scotland.
Ross was Controller of Film and Drama at Channel 4 until 2014 when she left for what ultimately turned out to be a short a stint as chief executive of the National Theatre. While at Film4, Ross established herself as a keen supporter of British and independent film talent. Her tenure saw a host of award- winning films, including Four Lions, This Is England, In Bruges, Slumdog, Under The Skin and 12 Years A Slave.
Howell stepped down from Working Title last year. Beginning in 2010, she set up the UK production arm and oversaw a number of drama series, films and comedies including BAFTA-winners London Spy and Birdsong for the BBC; the BBC/HBO film Mary And Martha; and Sky series Yonderland. Howell also oversaw the Sky/NBC drama You, Me And The Apocalypse.
BBC Worldwide has taken a 25% stake in House Productions and will act as global distributor for the company’s TV content. Access Entertainment has a first-look deal to develop and finance features from House. The Access Industries division was formed in May to invest in TV, films, and theatrical productions with ex-BBC exec Danny Cohen as president. House also has additional investment from New York-based investor Laura Sloate.