New Global Joint Venture
BROADWAY WORLDWIDE ENTERTAINMENT MEDIA
To Capture Live-In-Performance Broadway Musicals
In High Definition and Surround Sound
Will Produce and Distribute To a Global Audience
Under Broadway Worldwide’s DIRECT FROM BROADWAY® Brand
NEW YORK, NY and BEIJING, P.R.C. — On September 19, 2014, Broadway Worldwide, Inc. and Chinese media entrepreneur Dr. Bruno Wu’s Sun New Light Culture Development Limited, a part of Sun Seven Stars Entertainment Media Group, today announced a joint venture agreement to create Broadway Worldwide Entertainment Media (BWEM).
BWEM will capture live-in-performance Broadway musicals for high definition and surround sound (HD) content to produce and distribute to a global audience.
Under Broadway Worldwide’s DIRECT FROM BROADWAY® brand, which has previously captured such Broadway hits as the 2010 Tony Award®-winning Best Musical Memphis, the joint venture BWEM will finance, produce and distribute two to four Broadway musicals captured live-in-performance in HD every year.
In the US, BWEM will develop a theatrical distribution arm called BWEM Distribution Co. which will license titles to various exhibitors including large, small and independent movie theatres and digitally equipped performing arts centers and universities. Sun New Light will oversee the Asian market distribution; international distributors will be determined shortly.
Current titles from DIRECT FROM BROADWAY® such as the 2010 Tony Award®-winning best musical, Memphis will begin distribution immediately to the Asian markets.
According to Dr. Bruno Wu, “This joint venture represents a milestone for Broadway theatrical performances by bringing the experience to China’s ever growing population and the worldwide audience. We will leverage our leadership position in media to promote and distribute performances using traditional and digital methods to tens of millions of people who would otherwise be excluded.” Dr. Wu goes on to say, “In addition to thousands of ‘Big Screens,’ the digital distribution channels will reach consumers in a timely, relevant, personal, and cost-effective manner. Think of this as a Netflix® like service just for Broadway content syndicated through digital cable, OTT, and mobile applications.”
Bruce Brandwen, Broadway Worldwide CEO adds, “For many years, Dr. Wu and I have been interested in presenting authentic Broadway musicals in Asian countries such as China, Japan, and South Korea on a regular basis since millions of people will never get to see a real Broadway performance in New York. Together we concluded that because of the proliferation of digital systems throughout the world including Asia, the time was right to combine Broadway Worldwide’s expertise in procuring, producing and recording live in-performance Broadway shows with Sun New Light’s ability to provide digital exhibitions in movie theatres and high destination digital distribution platforms across the world”.
About Sun New Light Culture Development Limited
Sun New Light Culture Development Limited (SNL), a part of Sun Seven Stars Entertainment Media Group, is one of the premier organizers in China for live shows and large-scale activities. Founded in 2009 by Dr. Bruno Wu and Ms. Yang Lan, SNL has been deeply involved in many of China’s world-class and state-level cultural events. Its business spans across Mainland China, Hong Kong and the United States, with content accessible to an audience in the hundreds of millions. It focuses on the planning, production and promotion of large-scale activities and commercial performances. Among its many venues is the Olympic Songfest, the opening ceremony of the World Stamp Exhibition, the opening ceremony of the China Arts Festival, and the In Music Festival.
About Broadway Worldwide, Inc.
Broadway Worldwide, Inc. (BWI) is the industry leader in capturing Broadway musicals for multi-media HD distribution, with the company’s first capture in 2000 and titles including 2010’s Tony Award®-winning best musical, Memphis (also a 2012 primetime Emmy® winner); Cameron Mackintosh and Stephen Sondheim’s Putting It Together, A Musical Review, starring Carol Burnett; Jekyll & Hyde: The Musical, starring David Hasselhoff; and Smokey Joe’s Café; The Songs of Leiber and Stoller, among others. BWI was the first company to negotiate and conclude long term collective bargaining agreements with all the Broadway unions for HD capture and worldwide distribution to all media and platforms and was also the first to open markets domestically and internationally for Broadway shows captured in HD. Distribution has included theatrical exhibition throughout the US, which the company initially began experimenting with at the outset of the digital cinema launch at the turn of the 21st century, pay television licensing to pay-per-view cable and satellite systems, HBO, PBS’ Great Performances, Netflix, DVD and Blu-ray.
International theatrical distribution outreach has included Great Britain, Brazil, South Africa, Finland, Ireland, Belgium, Thailand and Korea, among others, with television licensing to countries including Japan, Australia, Indonesia, Italy, Portugal, Scandinavia, Turkey, Ukraine and more. BWI shareholders include The Shubert Organization, Nederlander Organization, Jujamcyn Theaters, five-time Tony Award®-winning producer Roy Furman, four-time Tony Award® winning director Jerry Zaks and eight-time Emmy® winning director Don Roy King.