The Business Side of the Studio

Sunday, April 23
2:15PM – 3:15PM
John Bassett Theatre

Rick Olshansky, Co-Head of AMC Studios, sits down with moderator Steve Hoban, founder of Copperheart Entertainment, to discuss the business case for why a series gets made, or more importantly, why it doesn’t. Often, the creative team lacks insight into the business case for a show and potential sticking points that will prevent a series order. This engaging interview will explore various considerations a studio or network make when deciding which projects to move forward with, including: production costs, advertising, international vs. national markets, formats, and competing in the era of peak TV.

Rick Olshansky

Rick Olshansky

Co-Head, AMC Studios and Executive Vice President, Business Affairs, AMC Networks Inc.

Rick Olshansky is the co-head of AMC Studios and executive vice president of business affairs for AMC, SundanceTV, IFC and BBC AMERICA. In these dual roles, he helps direct the growth and development of the company’s studio operation, which is increasingly important to AMC Networks as the company expands its role in producing and owning more of the content featured on its networks, and oversees all business affairs functions for four national networks.

Rick has oversight over production of all television programming owned and produced by AMC, as well as oversight over all distribution of finished programming to third party platforms both domestically and internationally.  Current shows include THE WALKING DEAD, FEAR THE WALKING DEAD, HALT AND CATCH FIRE, TURN: WASHINGTON SPIES, HAP AND LEONARD, INTO THE BADLANDS, THE SON, THE TERROR, and DIRK GENTLY’S HOLISTIC DETECTIVE AGENCY.

Prior to joining AMC Networks in 2014, Olshansky held key business affairs roles within the media and entertainment industry. In 2013, he served as a business affairs consultant with Microsoft Xbox Entertainment Studios, and from 2011 to 2013, he was executive vice president of business operations at Bedrocket Media Ventures. From 2004 to 2009, Olshansky was at NBC Universal as executive vice president of television network and studio business affairs. Prior to that, he was head of business affairs for the Endeavor Talent Agency from 1999 to 2004.

Olshansky graduated with honors from University of Michigan with a bachelor’s degree in English, and received his J.D. cum laude from University of Michigan Law School. He is a member of the State Bar of California and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.


Steve Hoban

Steve Hoban

Founder, Copperheart Entertainment

Steven Hoban is founder of the Toronto-based film and television production company Copperheart Entertainment.  He has produced numerous feature films, the Academy Award-winning animated short, RYAN, and the world’s first Imax 3D animated movie CYBERWORLD.

Some of Steve's past feature films include: WOLVES, starring Jason Momoa and Lucas Till, HAUNTER starring Abigail Breslin, SPLICE starring Adrien Brody and Sarah Polley, both directed by Vincenzo Natali, comedy YOUNG PEOPLE FUCKING, the Dimension Films remake of  BLACK CHRISTMAS and the cult success GINGER SNAPS trilogy.

Upcoming Copperheart films include the adaptation of the Stephen King/Joe Hill novella, IN THE TALL GRASS, to be directed to by Vincenzo, and the animated family feature comedy, NIGHT OF THE ZOOMBIES, based on a story by Clive Barker.

In television, along with Vincenzo, Steve created the limited anthology series, DARKNET, that launched on Netflix fall 2014.  Shows Steve is currently in development on include: the 1950s Hollywood set drama, SHAKEDOWN, with writer James Ellroy and David Fincher; the series adaptation of William Gibson's latest science fiction novel, The Peripheral, in partnership with Jonathan Nolan, Lisa Joy and Warner Bros.; and a series with the CBC based on Isaac Asimov's classic Tales of the Black Widowers mystery stories.

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