Eli Holzman, who executive produced the Emmy-winning Undercover Boss in his role as president of Studio Lambert USA and All3Media America, is launching a television, feature film, and mobile content company backed by a trio of private equity investors including former on-screen Undercover Bosses, Sheldon Yellen of Belfor and Michael Rubin of Kynetic. On the startup, named The Intellectual Property Corporation (IPC), Holzman has teamed with his longtime producing partner, Aaron Saidman. The duo will lead the independent company, whose third investor is David Adelman of Campus Apartments.
Based in Culver City, IPC plans to focus on unscripted formats and series, high-end documentary series, limited series and doc features, mobile content, for which it has raised designated financing, as well as feature films and scripted TV series based on properties from the company’s docu portfolio — all for the U.S. and international markets.
While IPC had been slated for a January launch, Holzman started working with his new team immediately after he left All3Media in September while the new company’s funding and employment deals as well as office space were being worked out. So far, IPC has put in development or sold projects with Mark Wahlberg & Stephen Levinson, Peter Berg and Film 45, and Shaquille O’Neal among others. The company, which has two series ordered, has projects set up ath NBC, HBO, AMC, History, E! and TLC. IPC would not provide details on the projects beyond saying that some are premium documentary series, one is a game show, and one is a format.
“There has never been a more exciting time to be a content creator,” said Holzman. “There are more buyers than ever before, more ways to reach the audience, and an almost limitless array of options to finance quality intellectual property.”
Holzman and Saidman go back to the early days of their careers when they were assistants together at Miramax Films. While Saidman took a filmmaker route, Holzman stayed on the creative executive path at Miramax Television where he was an exec on the company’s long-running hit Project Runway. When Holzman was launching Studio Lambert USA, he reached out to Saidman to help produce some pilots, leading to him producing on the first season of the company’s Undercover Boss and serving as head of current programming and development for Studio Lambert USA and its successor, All3Media America where Holzman was president. The duo’s partnership culminated with their collaboration on the 2014 documentary The Seven Five.
IPC’s executive team includes Rachel Dax (MasterChef, formerly of Endemol Shine USA) as head of production; Andy Olymbiou (formerly of All3Media America) as head of finance; Matt Zien as director overseeing all development and Steve Erdman as coordinator of development.
Holzman met a number of top business people while Making Undercover Boss for the last five years, some of them, including Sheldon Yellen and Michael Rubin, becoming his friends and mentors.
“When I decided to start IPC I talked to a few of the major industry players about backing us, and we received generous offers from them,” Holzman said. “But Aaron and I had worked closely with Sheldon in producing The Seven Five, and when we got the chance to partner directly with him and Michael and David – and to be truly independent – it was simply too good to pass up.
IPC is repped by WME and McKuin Frankel Whitehead.