“Tinder Swindler” production outfit AGC Studios has launched a new division for non-fiction and unscripted content, headed by former Magical Elves executive Joel Zimmer.
AGC Unwritten will develop, finance, produce and distribute the company’s burgeoning unscripted slate, with Zimmer serving as president. The intention is for the non-scripted arm to match AGC’s busy operations in the feature film and scripted TV arena.
Set up by Stuard Ford in 2018, AGC Studios’ non-fiction titles include the upcoming documentary series “Nobu,” about the famed restauranteur and entrepreneur Nobu Matsuhisa, from documentary director Matt Tyrnauer (“Valentino: The Last Emperor,” “Where’s My Roy Cohn?”). The company has also co-financed three documentaries with CNN Films, including “Lady Boss: the Jackie Collins Story,” “John Lewis: Good Trouble” and “Scandalous: The True Story of the National Enquirer.”
The new company’s non-fiction slate across film and television will soon be announced. The roster includes several projects being shepherded by BJ Levin, who is moving across AGC Studios to the new company as executive VP of non-fiction content. Zimmer is also building out an executive team.
Zimmer most recently served as executive VP of development for Magical Elves, where he led a wide range of projects into development for Disney+, Amazon, Netflix, ABC/Hulu, Peacock, National Geographic and Discovery+.
Previously, he ran independent production banner Snow Day Entertainment, which produced and developed projects for A&E Originals, FOX Studios and Zee Americas. Prior to that, as head of current for 495 Productions, he oversaw and executive produced over 500 hours of programming for a variety of cable and broadcast networks.
Zimmer began his entertainment career as a full-time touring standup comedian, and co-created the patented That Guy! card game, which was also the first project he packaged as a TV show.
Ford said: “Having delivered 30-plus premium quality films and TV shows to the marketplace in just four years, it’s tremendously exciting for AGC to be further expanding its range of output with the launch of AGC Unwritten. We’re privileged to have a recognized industry heavyweight like Joel on board to lead the new venture and I am looking forward to AGC evolving further into unscripted formats, gameshow, docuseries and alternative programming in the near future”.
Added AGC chief creative officer Lourdes Diaz: “We are delighted to be launching AGC Unwritten with Joel Zimmer at the helm. His experience, intelligence, instincts and passion make him the perfect person to expand our robust slate through meaningful partnerships with creators, best in class talent, and impactful formats and story.”
Zimmer said: “I’m thrilled to be working with Stuart, Lourdes and the entire first-class team they’ve assembled at AGC Studios. To be able to bring the same elevated storytelling of AGC’s film and scripted units to Unwritten is an incredibly energizing prospect. I’m eager to get into the market with fresh new formats, great characters, and unique worlds.”
In addition to movies like John Cena’s “Freelance” and Isla Fisher comedy “The Present,” AGC’s TV projects include Netflix docuseries “The Tinder Swindler,” which was a hit for the streaming platform, Carla Gugino’s “Leopard Skin” and an adaptation of Gabriel García Márquez’s “News of a Kidnapping” for Amazon Prime Video.
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