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Sky shares F1 rights, creates 3D production company

UK pay TV operator BSkyB and public broadcaster the BBC have been awarded the live rights to Formula 1 between 2012 and 2018.

Under the terms of the deal, all races, qualifying and practice sessions will be shown live on Sky Sports across TV, online and mobile and tablet platforms. Half the races and qualifying sessions will remain live on BBC TV, online and mobile including key races the British Grand Prix, Monaco Grand Prix and the final race of the season. The BBC will also offer extensive highlights of all races and qualifying sessions that it is not covering live.

Separately, Sky has announced that it will ramp up its production of 3D content by forming a new 3D production company, Colossus Productions, with UK independent producer, Atlantic Productions, producers of Sky 3D’s Flying Monsters 3D. The operator has also confirmed 3D output deals with Disney, Discovery Networks and MTV.

Sky and Atlantic Productions plan to develop original 3D programming for UK and international audiences. The productions will be showcased on Sky 3D, the pay TV operator’s dedicated 3D TV channel, before being distributed to other platforms and countries.

Anthony Geffen, Atlantic Productions CEO, said: ”We’re delighted to have formed this new venture with Sky, who’ve once again demonstrated their belief in the power of 3D storytelling. With the support of forward-looking broadcasters like Sky, we believe there’s a real opportunity for the UK production sector to take a world-leading position in 3D. The formation of Colossus Productions will engender the creation of exciting 3D content to entertain audiences worldwide, and the pedigree of the company will attract top talent from across the industry to work on these projects.”

The deal with MTV will cover episodes from the channel’s World Stage 3D series, which will include performances by Snoop Dog and the Kings of Leon. The Discovery deal covers 3D content from various Discovery Network channels, covering natural history, engineering and extreme sports. It will include 3D Safari, a ten-part series being filmed at Woburn Abbey, and Beautiful Freaks, a natural history special filmed in Namibia. Sky 3D’s portfolio of films has also been enhanced having secured the rights for Disney 3D titles including Toy Story 3, Lion King, Alice in Wonderland, Tron:Legacy, Mars Needs Moms, Pirates of the Caribbean 4 and Fright Night.