World Surf League Eyes Scripted TV Projects After Expanding Deal With ‘F1: Drive To Survive’ Producer Box To Box Films


EXCLUSIVE: The World Surf League (WSL) is looking to move into scripted television and bolster its slate of unscripted projects after expanding its partnership with Box To Box Films.

It comes after the professional surfing organization and the production company behind Netflix hit Formula 1: Drive To Survive, teamed up on Apple TV+ series Make or Break, which launched in April and has been renewed for a second season.

WSL was also behind ABC series The Ultimate Surfer, which it produced via its WSL Studios arm, in partnership with Lionsgate’s Pilgrim Media Group. WSL closed its studio arm earlier this year.

The exclusive first-look deal with Box to Box Films, which was founded by Paul Martin and Amy producer James Gay Rees, will see the two companies partner to produce original unscripted and scripted projects from the five-decade archive of the group’s surfers.

Box to Box is also behind Showtime’s The Kings and Make Us Dream, an Amazon doc about Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard.

“It’s been a phenomenal few years for the Box to Box Films team and we are thrilled at today’s announced partnership with the World Surf League,” said Martin. “This agreement represents an exciting new phase in our relationship with WSL. At Box to Box, we are passionate about telling stories of the world’s best athletes and in the last year we became obsessed with the world of surfing and the depth and breadth of the WSL stories and history. We believe there are some epic stories both historical and current which we are excited to bring to the world.”

“Box to Box Films is undoubtedly the hottest production company in sports and their ability to tell unique stories is unmatched,” added WSL CEO Erik Logan. “This partnership is a full-league deal and gives the team there – headed up by Oscar-winning James-Gay Rees and Emmy winner Paul Martin – the unprecedented opportunity to mine the archives of the entire sport. This type of access gives them a real opportunity to delve deep into the league’s rich history and use their intimate storytelling approach to take viewers inside the world, lives, and legends of the best surfers on the planet.”

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