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February 6, 2013

Lionsgate/Thunderbird’s Sea to Sky Entertainment Names Brett Burlock Toronto Head (Exclusive)


Etan Vlessing / The Hollywood Reporter

TORONTO — Lionsgate’s Sea to Sky Entertainment, a joint venture with Frank Giustra’s Thunderbird Films, has hired Brett Burlock to run its new Toronto office.

Burlock, most recently head of Canadian-based TV development outfit Take 5 Development, becomes vp of creative affairs at the TV production and distribution joint venture.

Burlock is also ex-head of development for Canadian broadcaster CTV, where his credits included Flashpoint, The Borgias, The Bridge and Saving Hope.

His duties at Sea to Sky include ramping up efforts to create a one-stop studio alternative for Canadian networks, whose top execs are based out of Toronto.

“Brett is a highly creative executive with excellent industry relationships and an impressive track record in developing exciting material for television,” said Lionsgate Television Group president Kevin Beggs in a statement.

The 50-50 joint venture already has deals in place for a TV series based on novels by Gone Baby Gone author Dennis Lehane, and a limited TV series based on the book An Uncommon Youth, about events surrounding the John Paul Getty III kidnapping in 1973.

The launch of Sea to Sky follows Giustra becoming a major shareholder in Thunderbird Films, which is led by CEO and president Tim Gamble in Vancouver.

Giustra, a mining magnate with close ties to Bill Clinton, founded Lionsgate in 1997, left the Vancouver-based indie studio in 2003, before more recently returning to its boardroom and TV production.