Halfire Entertainment hires Marla Boltman

The prodco's president Noreen Halpern (pictured) talks to Playback about the hire, as well as growing Halfire's slate beyond Aftermath and Alias Grace.

marla boltman - halfire hireHalfire Entertainment has hired Marla Boltman (pictured, right) to the newly created role of VP, business & legal affairs and operations.

Boltman is a 20-year veteran of the Canadian film and TV industry, dating back to a five-year stint with Alliance Atlantis as a business affairs/operations coordinator (1996-2001). Since then she has also worked for the CFC, CMF and DHX Media. Most recently, Boltman served as the CMPA’s VP, business & legal affairs and general counsel.

Based in the company’s Toronto office, Boltman will head up all of Halfire’s business and legal matters, as well as its everyday corporate operations. She will begin the role on July 12.

Halfire president Noreen Halpern (pictured, lower right) said Boltman was chosen for the position because of her passion for creative material, as well as her in-depth knowledge of how film and TV projects come together, both in Canada and internationally. Boltman’s hire is potentially the first in a number of additions to the company, added Halpern.

“The goal is to grow the company, but not in an unmanageable way,” Halpern told Playback Daily of the company’s strategy to bolster both its slate and number of employees. “It’s really important for me to have the time to devote to each show, and grow the company in an organic way to support what we’re doing.”

02-23-12noreen-halpernHalfire is currently in production on Aftermath (for Space and Syfy), which is filming in Vancouver until September, as well as the newly announced Sarah Polley project Alias Grace (for CBC and Netflix).

Of both projects, Halpern said the amount of time spent in development was significant. She added that it was beneficial to have Netflix come on board Alias Grace at such an early stage of development, as it meant that both distributors (CBC and Netflix) were on the same page throughout the creative process. Netflix’s enthusiasm about partnering with CBC was another reason she favoured the streaming service, said Halpern, after Sarah Polley, director Mary Harron and Halpern had pitched the project to more than eight potential partners in L.A.

The company has a number of other projects on its slate, added Halpern, though there is no rush to put any into production immediately.

“I’m a big believer in growing the slate carefully, so that when you start to roll things out they are really mature projects,” she said. “It will be a busy year with these two projects, but we have a number of other projects in the works.”

Halpern launched Halfire nearly four years ago after leaving her role as eOne’s president of dramatic programming in February 2012. The prodco’s first series, Working With Engels, produced with U.S. net NBC and Global TV, debuted in March 2014. That year also saw the prodco hire Julie Hope as COO; Hope departed the company this spring.