Alcon Gets Into Management Game With Madhouse Entertainment Purchase

Production company behind “The Blind Side” is ramping up a management arm with acquisition, now in late stages

Alcon Entertainment, the financing and production company that was  rather unjustly dubbed “tiny” before scoring a surprise hit with “The Blind Side,” has begun ramping up a new talent management arm.

Alcon today announced that they are in the late stages of acquiring Madhouse Entertainment, a small-scale, but highly credentialed boutique currently managing around 50 clients. The announcement was made jointly by Alcon founders Broderick Johnson and Andrew Kosove and Madhouse co-presidents Adam Kolbrenner and Robyn Meisinger.

Among Madhouse’s elite roster are Dave Andron, co-exec producer on FX's "Justified", Liz Garcia & Josh Harto, who created TNT's "Memphis Beat", and screenwriter David Guggenheim, whose "Safe House" horror entry will be unveiled this month by Universal.

Other clients include screenwriter Aaron Guzikowski. It was during a collaboration beginning two years ago to develop Guzikowski's "Prisoners" script that Alcon and Madhouse began discussing a more formal means of working together.

Managed by Alcon's Meisinger are Lauren Iungerich, creator/showrunner of MTV's "Awkward"; Other clients include screenwriter Dave Kajganich ("The Invasion"); Liz Kruger & Craig Shapiro, creators of USA's "Necessary Roughness"; Jeffrey Lieber, co-creator of "Lost"; and Jason Smilovic, creator of NBC's "My Own Worst Enemy" and ABC's "Karen Sisco."

Alcon was founded 14 years ago by Princeton friends Johnson and Kosove, who said the somewhat unusual pairing of pure production company with a talent management outfit could set the stage for future television production ventures.

The move is further meant to set the stage for other acquisitions in the talent management sphere, and Alcon has launched the enterprise as a holding company called Alcon Management Enterprises.

They said they would leave the day-to-day operations to the existing Madhouse management, but would offer “insight and expertise.”

In a statement, Kolbrenner and Meisinger said: "We feel very fortunate to integrate Madhouse with Alcon. Andrew and Broderick share our philosophies about the business, and we know this union will be very beneficial for our clients and mutually beneficial for our companies in general; it's a perfect fit."

In an interview with The Wrap,  Johnson and Kosove confirmed that they will seek a half-dozen similar managemnt company acqusitions, concentrating on the kind of talent rosters that fit their vision: “While  Hollywood is making a lot of branded entertainment, our interest is in storytelling and thoughtful dramatic material.  We've had success over the years with such films like "P.S., I Love You" and "Insomnia". (It was  Molly Smith, who happens to be married to Kosove, who works alongside Hilary Swank at 2S Films and brought “The Blind Side”  to Alcon for the company to shepherd through a daunting development process).

 

We've found that the sometimes-ignored adult female audience can be a great asset, as Particpant and Dreamworks' recent success with "The Help" demonstrates anew."