EXCLUSIVE: Tara Long, who was President of Global Unscripted Television at eOne, has finalized a deal with John Morayniss’ Blink49 Studios.
Deadline revealed that Long was leaving after the Lionsgate merger went through and was set to strike a deal with the Fifth Season-backed company. Instead of setting up her own shop with the company, she is instead becoming President of Global Unscripted Television.
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Joining her is former Bounce TV exec Ri-Karlo Handy, who will become SVP, Unscripted.
Based in LA and reporting to CEO Morayniss, whom she worked with for over ten years when he was at eOne, Long will oversee its U.S. unscripted television slate and will assume responsibility for managing the global unscripted division including the ongoing Canadian operations.
EVP Toby Dormer and Handy will report to Long, while VP Allison Brough will continue to report to Dormer.
Long has been behind series such as Impact with Gal Gadot for National Geographic, Biggie: The Life of Notorious B.I.G. for A+E and Siesta Key for MTV, among others.
Handy, meanwhile, spent three years at Bounce TV, where he created drama series Saints & Sinners, before setting up his own shop The Handy Foundation. He was showrunner on Harlem Globetrotters: Play It Forward and home renovation-documentary series Rebuilding Black Wall Street.
Blink49 was founded by John Morayniss, Patrice Theroux, Jeff Lynas and Nelson Kuo-Lee in 2021.
“I’m delighted to reunite with Tara,” said Morayniss. “Tara has established herself as a distinctive force in the market, earning a stellar reputation for delivering outstanding alternative programming that resonates with global audiences. We are so grateful to have Tara back in the fold to lead the growth of our unscripted business. I know that with her integrity, dedication and commitment to non-fiction story-telling and her incredible relationships with talent and buyers, Tara will build a powerhouse, best in class alternative division.”
“I’m thrilled to join the Blink49 team and to be working alongside old friends,” added Long. “I’m also excited to start building out the global team including Ri-Karlo, who I’ve had the privilege of working with previously. Ri-Karlo’s industry-respected expertise and extensive network will undoubtedly help elevate projects in the pursuit of excellence and compelling unscripted entertainment.”
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