SyFy's Ascension Starts Production
SYFY’S ORIGINAL EVENT SERIES ASCENSION COMMENCES PRODUCTION IN MONTREAL
Six-Episode Series From Lionsgate Television, Sea To Sky Studios and Blumhouse Productions To Premiere November 2014
NEW YORK – July 7, 2014 – Syfy’s Ascension, a six-hour event series premiering in November, has commenced production in Montreal, QC. Written and created by executive producer and showrunner Philip Levens (Smallville), Ascension is an ambitious original drama following a covert U.S. space mission launched in the 1960’s that sent hundreds of men, women and children on a century-long voyage aboard the starship Ascension to populate a new world. Half way into their journey, as they approach the point of no return, the mysterious murder of a young woman causes the ship’s population to question the true nature of their mission.
Produced by Lionsgate Television and Sea To Sky Studios in association with Blumhouse Productions, the series stars Brandon P. Bell (Hollywood Heights) as the confident and capable First Officer Oren Gault, Brian Van Holt (Cougar Town, The Bridge) as the eponymous ship’s captain William Denninger and Tricia Helfer (Battlestar Galactica) as Viondra Denniger, the Captain’s beautiful, manipulative and dangerous wife (who also serves as the ship’s Chief Steward).
Joining Bell, Van Holt and Helfer are Tiffany Lonsdale as Chief Astronomer Emily Vanderhaus, Andrea Roth as the ship’s head doctor Juliet Bryce, Jacqueline Byers as her daughter Nora Bryce, PJ Boudousque as Nora’s love interest, James Toback and Ryan Robbins as Safety Officer (and Emily’s husband) Duke Vanderhaus.
Ascension is executive produced by Jason Blum (The Normal Heart, Stranded, The River, film franchises Paranormal Activity and The Purge) along with Ivan Fecan, Tim Gamble and Brett Burlock on behalf of Sea To Sky Studios. The event series will be co-financed and distributed by Universal Cable Productions and Lionsgate Television.
Ascension is slated to launch in November 2014 and air through December.
About Sea To Sky Studios
Sea To Sky is a cross-border studio partnership between Lionsgate Television and Frank Giustra's Thunderbird Films focusing on premium cable and network content for the US, Canadian and International markets. Sea To Sky has a number of high profile projects in development, including a continuing series based on the Patrick Kenzie/Angie Gennaro novels by "Gone Baby Gone" author Dennis Lehane, a limited event series of the events surrounding the John Paul Getty III kidnapping in 1973, and a Bret Easton Ellis television series adaptation of Jason Starr’s novel “The Follower." Sea To Sky also has a first look deal in place with Kevin Costner.
About Blumhouse Productions
Blumhouse Productions, founded by Jason Blum, is a multi-media production company that has pioneered a new model of studio filmmaking- producing high-quality micro-budget films for wide release. Since its launch, Blumhouse has produced more than 30 feature films including the highly profitable Paranormal Activity, Insidious, The Purge and Sinister franchises. Blumhouse has been ramping up its television business, working on both scripted and non-scripted shows including projects for SyFy (Ascension), MTV (Eye Candy), ABC and Mike Darnell. Blumhouse previously executive produced the Critics Choice award winner The Normal Heart for HBO, Stranded for SyFy and The River for ABC. Blumhouse's The Purge, its first production under its first-look deal with Universal Pictures, opened to more than $34 million on its opening weekend with a budget of just $3 million. Insidious: Chapter Two from FilmDistrict, grossed over $41 million on its opening weekend with just a $5m budget. Blumhouse's upcoming micro-budget wide releases include The Purge: Anarchy and Ouija for Universal.
Lionsgate is a leading global entertainment company with a strong and diversified presence in motion picture production and distribution, television programming and syndication, home entertainment, family entertainment, digital distribution, new channel platforms and international distribution and sales. Lionsgate currently has over 30 television shows on more than 20 networks spanning its primetime production, distribution and syndication businesses, including such critically-acclaimed hits as the multiple Emmy Award-winningMad Men and Nurse Jackie, the comedy Anger Management, the network series Nashville, the syndication success The Wendy Williams Show and the critically-acclaimed hit series Orange is the New Black.
Its feature film business has been fueled by such recent successes as the blockbuster first two installments of The Hunger Games franchise, the first installment of the recently-launched Divergent franchise,, Now You See Me, Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain, Warm Bodies, The Expendables 2, The Possession, Sinister, Roadside Attractions' Mud and Pantelion Films' breakout hit Instructions Not Included, the highest-grossing Spanish-language film ever released in the U.S.
Lionsgate's home entertainment business is an industry leader in box office-to-DVD and box office-to-VOD revenue conversion rate. Lionsgate handles a prestigious and prolific library of approximately 15,000 motion picture and television titles that is an important source of recurring revenue and serves as the foundation for the growth of the Company's core businesses. The Lionsgate and Summit brands remain synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the world.
About Universal Cable Productions
Universal Cable Productions creates innovative and critically acclaimed original scripted and digital content across multiple media platforms and outlets for domestic and international distribution. UCP produces Covert Affairs, Psych, Playing House, Royal Pains and Suitsfor USA; Defiance, Dominion and Warehouse 13 for Syfy, and Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome for distribution on Machinima Prime/YouTube, Syfy and DVD/Blu-Ray. Universal Cable Productions is a division of NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment.
Syfy is a media destination for imagination-based entertainment. With year round acclaimed original series, events, blockbuster movies, classic science fiction and fantasy programming, a dynamic Web site (www.Syfy.com), and a portfolio of adjacent business (Syfy Ventures), Syfy is a passport to limitless possibilities. Originally launched in 1992 as SCI FI Channel, and currently in 96 million homes, Syfy is a network of NBCUniversal, one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies. NBCUniversal is a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation. (Syfy. Imagine greater.)