8 NOV 2023

Natalie Lawley: "Escapade has been focusing on securing representation in all regions"

The Managing Director at Escapade Media describes the company's expansion strategy and anticipates their objectives for next year.

8 NOV 2023

Natalie Lawley

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Australian sales company Escapade Media attended Mipcom with new drama projects and sports titles, just in time for the Olympics 2024. Natalie Lawley, Managing Director of the company, described these launches and analyzed the audiovisual landscape and its impact on the distributor.

Escapade Media has expanded its reach through deals with distributors like Surreal TV in France or Daydreamer in the CEE Region. What are the results of these agreements? Are you planning to continue with this strategy?
"Escapade has been focusing on securing representation in all regions. In addition to Charo Penedo from Surreal TV and Ute Cichoki from Daydreamers, we have hired Anthony Appell to take care of Scandinavia and take over the US clients I have been handling. As we expand with different partnerships, it's key for our company to ensure the content is represented across all territories. We will continue this strategy until Escapade has representation worldwide."

Many hot topics are shaping the content industry today, like the Hollywood strike, AI, post-pandemic effects, the war, and the growth of the AVOD and FAST businesses. Any of these themes have directly affected Escapade's strategy?
"Yes, all of the above have impacted Escapade in different ways. We are an industry that is affected by many various events and shifts across the world. The critical point for Escapade is how we handle each event to ensure that, as an independent company, we are able to sustain our business. As such, we have concluded some FAST Channel deals, but overall, we must be mindful of our actions and choices and support our clients worldwide."

What are the main launches that you will promote this season?
"One of them is 'Portobello Road' drama. The venerable Portobello Road management company is on the verge of collapse. Owner Penny must dance between creditors, egos, and her desires to keep the music playing. But when that guitar hits the crowd, all her problems float away. With Executive Producer Eric Clapton, 'Portobello Road' paints the musical world of 1970s London true to the reality of those who lived it. Another title is the drama 'Debriefing The President.' That title tells about the capture, interrogation, and execution of Saddam Hussain, based on the extraordinary memoir of the CIA analyst John Nixon, who found and questioned him in the desert. John is tasked with finding actionable intelligence about insurgents, but when Saddam opens up, he begins to see a much more complex picture, which draws the Iraq invasion's purpose and efficacy into question. Finally, we will offer factual titles like 'Rose Gold' and "For the Love of Pets," narrated by Jai Courtney. A heart-warming series offering fascinating and entertaining insights into the world of people and pets inside this organization at a unique time when pet ownership has never been higher."

Is Escapade Media involved in the production of any new projects?
"Yes, we have just reached an agreement with Storyfirst to bring their new projects to the international marketplace. We have premium new drama projects for Mipcom. We also brought many new non-scripted projects to Mipcom, including some excellent sports projects in time for the Olympics 2024."

How would you describe Escapade's main achievements in 2023 and your main goals for 2024?
"This year has been an excellent year for the company. We have concluded key sales in the US, the UK, and other territories that have enabled subsequent series to be produced. Our agreement with Storyfirst allows Escapade to use its expertise and skills and take prestigious content into the market for commissions, pre-sales, and financing. We look forward to closing deals on all our projects at and after the market."

By Romina Rodriguez