12-Episode Season Will Premiere Fall 2018
LOS ANGELES – JANUARY 22, 2018 – Premium pay television network EPIX®, an MGM company, is set to launch a new version of the seminal Contender boxing franchise. This iconic, fan-favorite series produced by Mark Burnett, President of MGM Television and Digital, has launched multiple boxers into contention for world titles. EPIX will debut an all-new 12-episode season of the boxing competition series, which will start production in 2018 with an anticipated debut later this year. MGM Television is producing with Paramount Television.
The upcoming series will feature 16 fighters in an elimination competition that will push their skills, strength and endurance to the limit. “Boxing belongs on premium pay television and there is no better home for The Contender than EPIX.” said Burnett. “We will tell stories of the fighters, the families and their difficult journeys in the emotionally compelling Contender style, so that viewers get to vicariously ‘walk a mile’ in the boxers shoes.”
The boxers will be divided into two teams to train, each overseen by a renowned boxing coach who will act as mentor. Over the course of the season, the competitors will live together, train together and fight each other in the ring, all vying to be become the ultimate Contender and take the winner’s six-figure purse.
“The Contender has launched the careers of many fighters, with some Contenders taking world titles – but this new iteration of the series will also showcase the heart, spirit and dramatic personal stories of these fighters as they fight in and out of the ring to realize their dreams,” said Michael Wright, President of EPIX. “This is not only real boxing, but real, raw human storytelling from the best unscripted television production team in the world.”
The Contender ran for four seasons (2005-2009) and according to Nielsen Media Research the series was seen by 180 million cumulative viewers. The series saw eleven Contender fighters fight for world championships after appearing on the show, with five title winners (Mora, Bundrage, Smith, Bika, Soliman). Sergio “The Latin Snake” Mora went on to win the WBC Super Welterweight Championship and season three champion Sakio “The Scorpion” Bikawent on to win the WBC & IBO Super Middleweight Championships, among others.
Eric Van Wagenen is executive producer and showrunner alongside Mark Burnett. The format is owned by MGM Television and Paramount Television.
About MGM Television
MGM Television is a leading producer and global distributor of premium content for television and digital platforms, with distribution rights to original productions and a robust catalog of television episodes and feature film titles including such premiere entertainment franchises as James Bond, Rocky, Stargate and The Hobbit trilogy. Current scripted and unscripted projects include Fargo (FX); Vikings (HISTORY); The Handmaid’s Tale (Hulu); Get Shorty (EPIX); The Voice (NBC); Survivor (CBS); Shark Tank (ABC); Teen Wolf (MTV); Steve Harvey’s FUNDERDOME (ABC); Beat Shazam (FOX); Signed (VH1); Lucha Underground (The El Rey Network); and through its distribution entity, Orion TV Productions, the syndicated daytime courtroom series Lauren Lake’s Paternity Court and Couples Court with The Cutlers. In addition, MGM owns Evolution Media, the innovative unscripted television producers of The Real Housewives of Orange County, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Vanderpump Rules, Vanderpump Rules: Jax and Brittany Take Kentucky, and Sweet Home Oklahoma (Bravo); Botched (E!); Bug Juice (Disney Channel) and Growing Up Supermodel (Lifetime). MGM’s television programming regularly airs in more than 100 countries worldwide. For more information, visit www.mgm.com.
EPIX, an MGM company, is a premium pay television network, delivering the latest movie releases and biggest classic film franchises, plus original programming including series, documentaries, and comedy specials – all available on TV, on demand, online and across devices. Launched in October 2009, EPIX became profitable in its first year of existence and is now available nationwide to 70 million homes through cable, telco, satellite and emerging digital distribution platforms. A pioneer in the development and proliferation of “TV Everywhere,” EPIX was the first premium network to provide multi-platform access to its content online at EPIX.com and to launch on Xbox, PlayStation®, Android phones and tablets, and Roku® players. EPIX is also available across hundreds of consumer devices including Apple TV, iPhone and iPad, Amazon Fire TV, TiVo, Chromecast, and Android TV, delivering more movies than any other network with thousands of titles available for streaming. For more information about EPIX, go to www.EPIX.com. Follow EPIX on Twitter @EpixHd (http://www.twitter.com/EpixHD) and on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/EPIX), YouTube (http://youtube.com/EPIX), Instagram (http://instagram.com/EPIX) and Snapchat @EPIXTV.
About Paramount Television
Paramount Television is a leading studio, developing and financing a wide range of cutting-edge and entertaining television content across all media platforms for distribution worldwide. The studio’s robust slate includes Tom Clancy’s “Jack Ryan” (Amazon), “13 Reasons Why” (Netflix), “Maniac” (Netflix), “Shooter” (USA), “Berlin Station” (EPIX), “The Alienist” (TNT), “The Haunting of Hill House” (Netflix), “Catch-22’ (Hulu), “Galaxy Quest” (Amazon), “Girls Code” (Freeform) and “Snow Crash” (Amazon), among others. Additionally, Paramount Digital Entertainment (PDE) is behind hit digital series including “Bajillion Dollar Propertie$”; “The Hotwives of Orlando” and “The Hotwives of Las Vegas” (Hulu). Paramount Television and Paramount Digital Entertainment are part of Paramount Pictures Corporation (PPC), a global producer and distributor of filmed entertainment. PPC is a subsidiary of Viacom (NASDAQ: VIAB, VIA), a global content company with premier television, film and digital entertainment brands.
Maureen Granados / EPIX
[email protected] / 646.933.9280
Kristin Cotich / MGM
[email protected] / 310.449.3606
Jessica Rovins / Paramount Television
[email protected] / 323.956.8265