Cineflix taps Peter Smith to lead scripted arm

The London-based exec (pictured) will take Copper producer Cineflix Studios from its U.S. base under Christina Wayne and grow its presence making global dramas in Canada and the U.K.
Pete Smith Option 2 (Compressed cropped headshot)-1

Cineflix Media has tapped former NBC Universal International topper Peter Smith to head up its expanding scripted business as CEO, based in London.

After the successful launch of its first scripted series, Copper, on BBC America and Showcase from a U.S. based led by president Christina Wayne, Cineflix Studios will now expand into Canada and Britain under Smith’s leadership.

“That was the attraction, because there is so much opportunity in front of the company,” Smith told Playback after talking to Cineflix Media co-founders Glen Salzman and Katherine Buck ahead of his appointment.

“I thought Christina (Wayne) had done a superb job to not only get the first series on air, and she developed a strong pipeline and gave everyone int eh company a real confidence to join the company and move it to the next level,” he added.

Now Smith will look to mirror Cineflix Media’s global expansion on the factual programming front by making the scripted business a real assets for the Canadian producer.

Wayne and Vlad Wolynetz, president of production at Cineflix Studios will report to Smith.

Running Cineflix Studios will be a change of pace for Smith, who grew the revenue at NBC Universal International from $2.6 billion to more than $4 billion in four years.

At the same time, Smith recalls being under pressure to grow the international studio for NBC Universal, not least through acquisitions.

At Cineflix Studios, Smith is eyeing organic growth as Salzman and Buck continue to take a long term view of TV production.

And the scripted TV producer will be pragmatic as it builds out its U.S., Canadian and U.K. presence in the scripted arena, developing and financing series where it makes the most sense.

“We’ll focus on those three markets with equal energy,” Smith said.

Cineflix Studios has offices in New York, London, Toronto, Los Angeles, and Montreal.

Copper was the highest rated series premiere ever on BBC America, and recently pulled in around 400,000 viewers for its Showcase debut.