Jared Hoffman and Chris Pollack have exited as co-presidents of DEFY Media’s Generate to launch a new production company, Forge Media. The duo and their banner have signed an exclusive deal with ITV America to create and produce scripted and unscripted content for network, cable and streaming platforms under the ITVA banner.
Upscale with Prentice Penny co-creators Pollack and Hoffman plan to focus their unscripted efforts primarily on comedy, gaming, and lifestyle projects and to return to scripted drama and comedy programming. The duo will continue to serve as executive producers on truTV’s Upscale with Prentice Penny, which premiered in March, and NFL Network’s Madden America, as well as Danny Trejo-hosted Man At Arms: Art of War, which premieres on El Rey Network this summer.
As Forge Media is entering the deal with ITV America, the company has added Jay Judah as VP of Development and Gabrielle Utsey as Coordinator, Production and Development.
“Chris and Jared have spent years bringing their deep bench of creativity to so many areas of our industry – from branded entertainment to film and TV,” said ITV Entertainment President, David Eilenberg, who will manage the ITV America/Forge Media partnership. “Our goal is to support them, give them what they need, and watch them soar in what we are confident will be a great partnership.”
Hoffman and Pollack previously co-created and executive produced The Help Desk with Gotham Chopra, which became one of the first series to transition from YouTube to television when it was picked up by OWN. The duo were also at the helm of Part Timers, the first scripted series funded by YouTube from the SMOSH channel. Additionally, the pair served as producers on the The Walking Dead web series, which received a Streamy Award, a Webby Award, and two Writers Guild Awards during its three-season run.
“It’s been liberating creatively to have been able to expand our professional roles further into the producing space over the past several years, and we’re beyond thrilled to take the natural next step in our careers in launching Forge Media,” said Hoffman and Pollack. “We can’t think of a better place than ITV America to embark on this journey. Their reach, resources and creative support is the perfect home for what we want to do and the content we plan to make.”
The deal was brokered by Ed Simpson, EVP, business development & international, ITV America. Forge Media is repped by WME and Ziffren Brittenham.