Relativity acquires Tom Forman Prods.

Forman will be CEO of new Relativity reality arm

Reality producer Tom Forman has joined Relativity Media to create a TV division.

Forman ("Kid Nation," "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition") will become CEO of Relativity Real, a production, sales and distribution arm focused on developing unscripted projects. As part of the deal, the three-time Emmy winner has folded his company, Tom Forman Prods., and his eight-member staff will join him at Relativity Real.

Relativity Media also has established its own foreign sales arm to sell Forman's programs and formats to the international marketplace. Forman will run day-to-day affairs of Relativity Real and serve as executive producer on the majority of the productions.

The deal comes just a week after Forman's two-year overall deal with CBS Paramount expired. The agreement effectively allows Relativity to purchase the collective brain trust of Tom Forman Prods. without purchasing the actual company.

Relativity Media president and CEO Ryan Kavanaugh said Forman's deal is only the first step in establishing a strong television unit.

"We spent the last three years doing a lot of research looking for a TV structure that will mirror our film structure," Kavanaugh said. "Forman is perfect, he has a fully functioning team, and now overnight we now have a very robust television company. ... Our goal is ultimately to be a major supplier of high-quality and commercial content to the domestic and international marketplace."

The deal is worth about $3 million-$4 million per year for Forman's newly established division, which will launch with a three-year commitment. Relativity's investment in the burgeoning television department might be considerably higher, however, once other material expenses are included.

"Relativity Real is a company of storytellers," Forman said. "Their financial commitment to Relativity Real speaks for itself: a monster investment in a major new company that's poised to reinvent unscripted television. Relativity's other commitments to Relativity Real are harder to quantify but equally important. It was clear from our first meeting that Ryan and I share a passion for great stories."

Forman is represented by UTA.