By Kristin Brzoznowski
LOS ANGELES: Jeff Collins has opened his own reality production outfit, Collins Avenue, in partnership with ContentFilm and Fireworks International.
The five-year deal sees ContentFilm investing in Collins Avenue in return for an equity stake, while Fireworks International will act as international distributor for Collins Avenue product. Casandra Wasaff has been tapped to serve as director of development and Kamico Drakes as development coordinator for the new venture.
For the past several years Jeff Collins has been overseeing the U.S. office of September Films, serving as the showrunner for three seasons on W.E. TV's BrideZillas as well as the new A&E series The Exterminators. He also was an executive consultant on The Pregnant Man for Discovery. Collins also acted as the showrunner for, among others, VH1's I Know My Kid’s A Star, How Clean Is Your House? for Lifetime and the Crashing With franchise for MTV.
"This is a great time to establish a U.S. reality production company with strong international distribution," said Collins. "U.S. reality programming is getting stronger as the demand for great reality ideas increases in the domestic market alongside a growing appetite in international markets. The world wants to watch what we make and that is truly exciting. After a decade of running shows and companies for other people, it's time I take the reins. Joining the ContentFilm Group was an opportunity I couldn't pass up. The access they provide to international markets is unsurpassed and these guys move very fast—I like that! They share my vision and agree that now is the time to invest and grow."
Content's CEO, John Schmidt, commented, "For years we have been big fans of Jeff's shows, and as we got to know him, we were greatly impressed with his energy, enthusiasm and commercial instincts. As we are building the non-fiction side of Fireworks International, the opportunity to invest and join Jeff in starting his company presented a wonderful opportunity. As Jeff launches new productions we look forward to working with him on international sales and co-productions, and we will help him build his new business in any way we can."