NATPE 2011: MTV Programmers Partner to Form DiGa Productions
Venture backed by Silverman's Electus
By Paige Albiniak -- Broadcasting & Cable, 1/24/2011 2:38:22 PM
MTV programmers Tony DiSanto and Liz Gateley have teamed up to form a new production company, DiGa Productions, that will be backed by Ben Silverman's Electus. The partners announced the news during a Monday (Jan. 24) panel at NATPE in Miami.
"Tony and I have been working closely together at MTV for the past several years so it is a natural transition for us to become partners in this new venture," said Liz Gateley, co-founder, DiGa. "We are fans of content that makes a cultural impact --whether it's a series, a book or a film. That was our philosophy at MTV and we will strive to do the same at DiGa- - to create quality content that resonates in pop culture."
DiSanto and Gateley were behind such MTV hits as Teen Mom, Jersey Shore and 16 and Pregnant. They also developed last summer's Hard Times of RJ Berger, MTV's first shot at scripted programming in years, which was renewed for a second season. The pair left MTV in December to form their new company.
DiGa -- a combination of the pair's names -- will create, develop and produce programming across all platforms. Electus will both finance and distribute those efforts.
Already the partners have several shows in development, including a comedy format from Nick Cannon's NCredible Entertainment starring Amanda Diva; a fashion series from the Today Show's West Coast correspondent Jill Martin; and three series with Jackhole Industries, the production company of Jimmy Kimmel, Adam Carolla and Daniel Kellison.
The pair also intends to continue their relationship with MTV, and develop and produce programming for the youth-focused cable network. Among those projects is a scripted series based on the 1985 film Teen Wolf.
Two executives already have been named to DiGa's management team. Mike Powers is creative executive, responsible for managing DiGa's production and development. Scott Silberman is executive in charge of production.
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