Entertainment One (eOne) has acquired Finding Escobar’s Millions and I Am Homicides producer Blackfin. Following the purchase, the Designated Survivor studio has appointed Blackfin founder and CEO Geno McDermott to the new role of President, US Alternative Programming – Unscripted Television.
It comes after eOne itself was acquired last month by toy maker Hasbro in a $4B deal.
The Blackfin acquisition sees eOne bolster its non-scripted business and comes after it acquired British producer Daisybeck Studios, which makes series including The Yorkshire Vet and the appointment of Matt Pritchard and Matt Walton as Executive Vice Presidents, Unscripted, Television based in London.
McDermott will report to eOne’s Tara Long, President, Global Unscripted, Television, who oversaw the deal.
Blackfin, which was founded in 2014, produces series including Discovery’s Finding Escobar’s Millions, as well as true-crime series I Am Homicide, Homicide City, Primal Instinct and Bad Henry as well as feature docs including My Perfect World: The Aaron Hernandez Story. It will continue to produce docs, true crime, natural history and factual content under eOne.
“As our global unscripted television business has rapidly expanded, we are eager to bring Geno’s entrepreneurial hustle to the eOne team. I am excited to have Geno’s focus, drive, and business acumen as part of our arsenal to continue building the future of eOne’s unscripted slate,” said Long. “We are extremely impressed by the company and team Geno built so early into his career and we could not be more thrilled to have Blackfin on board.”
“Blackfin’s rapid growth called for a strategic partner to provide infrastructure and take the company to new heights, eOne could not be a better fit. There is a prolific story unfolding at the studio that Tara has spent the past nine years driving and I am excited to be a part of it,” added McDermott (left). “I respect and admire Tara’s grit and tenacity and look forward to collaborating with her as we grow the business together.”
eOne was represented in the deal by Sidley Austin LLP with ACF Investment Bank and Loeb & Loeb for Blackfin. Blackfin is represented by WME.