Pukeko Pictures, Wellington, 6 October 2014: Pukeko Pictures today announced a first look deal with Michael Polis through his Los Angeles based Atomic Toybox production company for the development of new childrens television projects for the global market on behalf of Pukeko Pictures.
In addition, Michael will be enhancing Pukeko Pictures’ childrens television portfolio, developing and working with the company to secure broadcast and co-production deals for new and pre-existing Pukeko Pictures’ childrens properties.
A proven senior level strategist and producer specialising in brands and intellectual property, Polis has significant expertise in marketing, licensing and property development having created content for some of the world’s most celebrated brands. As the former President of W!LDBRAIN Entertainment and Executive Vice President of Branded Entertainment and Consumer Products at DHX Media, he created and Executive Produced UMIGO, a cutting edge transmedia property developed to teach math and literacy skills. In addition, he served as Executive Producer on key productions including Yo Gabba Gabba! for Nickelodeon as well as projects for HBO, Disney and Mattel.
Polis will also bring his experience as Senior Vice President of Marketing Worldwide at The Jim Henson Company overseeing global strategic marketing initiatives for the entire The Jim Henson Company portfolio including The Muppets, Fraggle Rock and Labyrinth. Throughout the course of his career, Michael has received numerous awards and nominations including four Emmy nominations for Outstanding Pre-School Children’s Series in 2002, 2011, 2012 and 2013.
Andrew Smith, CEO of Pukeko Pictures, said, “We are delighted to have formed this partnership with Michael, a well-connected and respected leader in the children’s television industry. Together with Michael we look forward to continued success in creating high-quality, globally recognised children’s television brands”.
“I am thrilled to be partnering with the team at Pukeko Pictures. I am looking forward to working with the team to seek out new opportunities for the company’s existing slate as well as growing Pukeko Pictures’ children’s television portfolio to deliver engaging, entertaining and internationally popular content,” said Polis.
The addition of Michael to the Pukeko Pictures’ executive team further expands the company’s interest in working with leaders in the children’s television space to develop and produce content for a worldwide audience, building on their international success of Jane and the Dragon and the WotWots which have sold to over 30 and 100 territories respectively.
Pukeko Pictures, together with ITV Studios is currently in production on Thunderbirds Are Go, a remake of the classic series originally produced by Gerry and Sylvia Anderson. Debuting on ITV and CITV in 2015, Thunderbirds Are Go has already been sold to Australia’s Nine Network.
About Pukeko Pictures
Pukeko Pictures is an independent entertainment production company focused on the development and production of excellent quality multi-platform entertainment for a global audience. Pukeko Pictures was formed in 2008 by Sir Richard Taylor, Tania Rodger and Martin Baynton, and is located in Wellington, New Zealand. With a connection to the world famous Weta Workshop (Avatar, King Kong, Lord of the Rings), Pukeko Pictures is uniquely positioned in the creation of world-leading entertainment, harnessing the best in global talent and world-class production processes. Weta Workshop is not to be confused with Weta Digital, the VFX company owned by Peter Jackson.