EXCLUSIVE: Imagine Entertainment principals Brian Grazer and Ron Howard have launched Imagine Kids & Family, a new division that will be run by Stephanie Sperber. The label will develop and produce premium animated and live-action feature films, television series and short-form content across all platforms in the kids and family entertainment space.
Sperber has a track record in building and monetizing kids and family businesses, IP and franchises. She takes the post of Kids & Family president while she continues her role as CEO of White Space Entertainment. She founded that venture in 2015, and it focuses on building kids franchises through consumer products and digital gaming. Imagine Entertainment has been a client and continues to be, with White Space supporting all Consumer Products efforts that develop from the new Imagine Kids & Family content division.
“Our emphasis will be on great storytelling that appeals to global audiences and has the potential to grow into true franchises,” Grazer said in a statement. “Sperber is a rare executive that can see the merits of a project not only in its ability to entertain, but also to resonate beyond the screen.”
Added Howard: “Imagine tells empowering and aspirational stories that connect on a profoundly human level and we have long believed in the importance of bringing that same sensibility to the kids and family space.”
Imagine Kids & Family will work with both established and emerging creative voices in kids animation and live-action to develop original IP for TV and short form for digital platforms.
“It’s always been a dream of mine to work with Brian, Ron, and Michael Rosenberg and to develop content for kids that is meaningful, purposeful and just plain fun. I look forward to merging my creative and business backgrounds to build the Imagine Kids & Family brand around the world while continuing to lead White Space independently in building global consumer products and gaming programs to support our clients’ IP.”
Prior to White Space, Sperber was President of Global Consumer Products, Gaming, Partnerships and Product Placement for Universal Pictures. During that time, Sperber launched the consumer products program for Illumination Entertainment, and helped build the global Despicable Me/Minions consumer products & brand alliance franchise into a multi-billion dollar program at retail around the world.
Sperber began her career with the launch of the Cartoon Network working with Turner Broadcasting as an executive at Hanna-Barbera Cartoons. Before entering the entertainment industry, Sperber worked for Senator Joe Biden on the Senate Judiciary Committee as a speech writer.