Searchlight Inks Multi-Year First-Look TV Deal With Chloé Zhao

Chloé Zhao

Searchlight Television, the recently launched division of Searchlight Pictures, has signed a multi-year first-look TV deal with multiple Academy Award winner Chloé Zhao (Nomadland, Eternals). The pact reunites Zhao with the studio, who partnered on Academy Award winner Nomadland. Through the deal, Searchlight Television will have a first look on series for exclusive development. This also marks the writer, director and producer’s first foray into series. 

“Chloe is a visionary filmmaker and, since the moment we finished Nomadland, we have looked to find new ways to collaborate again,” said Searchlight Presidents Matthew Greenfield and David Greenbaum. “We are inspired by the breadth of Chloe’s storytelling passions and are beyond happy to be able to link arms and expand the opportunities to support personal, powerful, and enduring stories.”

Nomadland was nominated for six Academy Awards, winning three for Best Picture, Director and Actress. The film also became the first ever to win both the Venice Golden Lion and the Toronto People’s Choice Audience Prize, and garnered four BAFTA Awards, four Critic’s Choice Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director, two IFP Gotham Awards, and PGA and DGA awards.

Prior to Nomadland, Zhao wrote and directed The Rider, and most recently Marvel Studio’s Eternals

Searchlight Television’s first production, “The Dropout”, won an Emmy Award for Best Actress for Amanda Seyfried, and earned an additional 5 nominations.  The Hulu Original limited series, produced in conjunction with 20th Television, follows the true story of Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos.  Searchlight Television is also producing the Hulu Original variety series “History of the World, Part II”, the much-anticipated follow up to the classic Mel Brooks comedy film in partnership with 20th Television; the eight-part series adaptation of “The Full Monty”, in partnership with FX and co-commissioned by Disney+ and FX; and the Spanish-Language limited series “La Máquina”, with Gael García Bernal and Diego Luna, both also for Hulu. The division develops and produces series for streaming, network, and cable partners.

Zhao is represented by Pangea and Ilene Feldman Management and Lichter, Grossman, Nichols, Adler, Feldman & Clark.

About Searchlight Pictures

Searchlight Pictures is a global specialty film and television company that develops, produces, finances and acquires motion pictures and series for both worldwide theatrical and streaming releases. It has its own marketing and distribution operations, and is part of The Walt Disney Studios, a division of The Walt Disney Company.

Founded in 1994 as Fox Searchlight Pictures, the company’s titles have grossed over $5 billion worldwide, amassing 46 Academy Awards including five Best Picture winners since 2009: Slumdog Millionaire, 12 Years a Slave, Birdman, The Shape of Water, and Nomadland; 51 BAFTA Awards, 28 Golden Globe Awards, and 10 Grammy Awards.

Searchlight Television, the division which develops and produces series for streaming, network, and cable partners, earned a Primetime Emmy Award for Best Actress and an additional 5 nominations for its first production “The Dropout” from Elizabeth Meriwether, in partnership with Hulu and 20th Studios.  Searchlight recently released Quinn Shephard’s Not Okay; Sophie Hyde’s Good Luck to You, Leo Grande; Andrew Ahn’s Fire Island; Guillermo del Toro’s Academy Award nominated Nightmare Alley; and Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson’s Oscar-winning documentary feature Summer Of Soul (…Or, When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised)with Hulu and in partnership with Disney’s Onyx Collective.

Upcoming releases include Tom George’s See How They Run; Martin McDonagh’s The Banshees of Inisherin; Mark Mylod’s The Menu; Sam Mendes’ Empire of Light; and Stephen Williams’ Chevalier