Lionsgate has launched a podcasting division with shows by Curtis Jackson, aka 50 Cent, and Michael Nathanson of Netflix’s Marvel’s The Punisher.
Lionsgate Sound will handle podcast production for the studio’s film and TV businesses while also producing audio product for third party clients. Lionsgate’s Pilgrim Media Group, headed by producer Craig Piligian, becomes a minority owner in Lionsgate Sound and will handle the day-to-day operations of the group to be overseen by Gretchen Stockdale and Nicholas Caprio.
And broadcast-journalist and producer Charlie Webster will head up creative for the new division. Lionsgate Sound will kick off with four shows, including the podcast with a working title Cuate/twin/: the downfall of El Chapo, hosted and produced by Curtis Jackson — executive producer of the Power franchise from Lionsgate-owned cable and streaming network Starz — and his newly established G-Unit Audio. The iHeartPodcast Network will handle exclusive distribution.
There’s also the interview podcast Playing Dead, hosted by Michael Nathanson; the FBI-focused show A Nation for Thieves; and Died and Survived, a podcast about near-death experiences hosted by Charlie Webster.
Besides around a dozen podcasts in the development pipeline, Lionsgate Sound will also produce the true-crime murder thriller The Lives and Deaths of Barry and Honey Sherman for exclusive distribution by the CBC in Canada.
“We look forward to entering the rapidly expanding podcast market as a great source of exciting new properties as well as an opportunity to feed the growing demand for audio content with our films, television series, Starz original programming, and library titles,” Joe Drake, chair of the Motion Picture Group, and Kevin Beggs, chair of the Lionsgate Television Group, said in a joint statement.