5:15am PT by Etan Vlessing
Big Machine CEO Scott Borchetta Developing Singing Competition Series
Big Machine Label Group president and CEO Scott Borchetta has unveiled plans for a TV singing competition series to be co-produced with Canada's Bell Media.
The record label exec who discovered Taylor Swift has teamed with the Canadian broadcaster to co-produce The Launch, a six-part talent search series for CTV. Developed as an international reality TV singing competition franchise, The Launch will see a group of unsigned musicians mentored in the creation of original songs by a panel of veteran hitmakers, including Borchetta.
Bell Media runs 30 local TV stations, 30 cable channels and four pay TV services in Canada, in addition to a stable of radio stations nationwide. Format veteran Paul Franklin, who executive produced MasterChef and The Biggest Loser, will co-develop the property and serve as showrunner.
The Launch will be shot this summer in Toronto, with indie Insight Productions as the local producer and John Brunton and Lindsay Cox sharing executive producer credits. Bell Media's winter schedule on CTV is anchored by another singing competition series, The Voice.
CTV earlier found ratings gold with American Idol, and aired a local Canadian Idol version. Borchetta launched the first of Big Machine’s five record labels, with Swift being among his first signees.
His roster now includes Rascal Flatts, Florida Georgia Line, The Band Perry, Brantley Gilbert, Reba McEntire, Martina McBride, Justin Moore, Eli Young Band and The Mavericks. Collectively, the Big Machine roster has been responsible for more than 50 No. 1 songs.
On the TV side, Borchetta was a mentor for American Idol’s 14th season, and Big Machine served as the home to ABC’s Nashville soundtracks, part of the 50 million total albums and more than 100 million single downloads that the company has sold.
Borchetta also executive produced the documentary Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me, as well as its companion soundtrack. He signed on with CAA to broaden his involvement in film, TV and theater.
Borchetta's tie-up with Bell Media follows former Universal Music Canada president and CEO Randy Lennox earlier this year being named to head up the Canadian media giant.