The roll-up media venture led by ex-Disney execs Tom Staggs and Kevin Mayer has set its next acquisition: Faraway Road Productions, the Israeli entertainment company behind Netflix series “Fauda” and “Hit & Run,” Variety has confirmed.
The deal for Tel Aviv, Israel-based Faraway — founded by and headed by Avi Issacharoff and Lior Raz (pictured above) — is the third for the still-unnamed company formed by Stagg and Mayer with the backing of private-equity company Blackstone. It’s a comparatively small tuck-in: The price tag for Faraway is under $50 million, according to a source familiar with the pact, compared with $3 billion for kids’ media company Moonbug Entertainment and $900 million for Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine.
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Issacharoff and Raz first inked a deal with Netflix in 2017 for political thriller “Fauda,” in which Raz also stars, based on his and Issacharoff’s experience serving in the Israel Defense Forces‘ special forces unit. The duo’s “Hit & Run” premiered on Netflix this August, centering on a happily married man whose life is turned upside down when his wife is killed in a mysterious hit-and-run accident in Tel Aviv — and he launches a search for his wife’s killers, who have fled to the U.S. After the debut of “Hit & Run” Netflix announced an extension of its pact with Issacharoff and Raz.
In a recent interview with Variety, Mayer said the Blackstone-backed media company’s strategy is to acquire best-in-category brands that have businesses in content, commerce and community (or have the potential to expand into each area). “Everything we buy has to have access to those doors,” he said. Separately, Staggs and Mayer have formed a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), looking to combine with companies in the tech, media, telecom and consumer sectors and take them public.
Faraway Road has several other film and TV projects in various stages of development, including “Siege of Bethlehem,” to be directed by Antoine Fuqua (“Training Day,” “The Equalizer”), and a fact-based spy thriller for Showtime with director Greg Barker (“Sergio,” “Ghosts of Rwanda”).
Talks between Faraway Road and the Staggs-Mayer-Blackstone venture were first reported by Bloomberg.
Pictured above: Faraway Road’s Avi Issacharoff (left) and Lior Raz
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