Charter’s new studio joint venture in talks to pick up Sony buddy cop pilot

Charter Communications sign (use this one)
Charter may be making its first big content buy since announcing it would be offering exclusive shows on its Spectrum platform. (Charter Communications)

Charter Communications is in talks with Sony Pictures Television to possibly pick up the police action pilot “LA’s Finest” starring Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba, Deadline Hollywood reports.

Charter and Sony haven’t commented on the anonymously sourced report. 

The pilot would be the first major content acquisition for Charter, which in January hired veteran TV industry production executive Katherine Pope to oversee joint ventures signed by the cable operator last year with Viacom and AMC to co-produce original series. 

According to Deadline, “LA’s Finest” is an offshoot of “Bad Boys,” the 1995 buddy-cop movie starring Will Smith and Martin Lawrence. 

RELATED: Charter says originals will ‘differentiate the Spectrum experience’ following Pope hire

Sony has reportedly been shopping the series after NBC made the surprise decision not to pick it up after its upfront presentation last week. 

Working out of a Los Angeles office, Pope joined Charter from Studio 8, where she spearheaded the launch of the company’s TV division. Prior to that, she served as president of television for Chernin Entertainment, and she spent 10 years at NBCUniversal TV Studios.

In April of last year, Charter announced a deal with AMC Networks in which the programmer’s studio unit will produce exclusive shows for the cable operator’s Spectrum platform.

The companies said at the time that they expected the first shows co-produced and co-funded through the deal to premiere on Charter Spectrum in 2018. Under the agreement, Charter will have an exclusive initial window in the U.S., while AMC Studios will retain subsequent rights, including the right to distribute the content internationally.

“We see original content as a way to further differentiate the Spectrum customer experience,” said Charter spokesman Justin Venech, in an email to Fierce in January. “We have previously announced our co-production plans with AMC and Viacom, and we will continue to explore opportunities for the development of original content. We have no comment beyond that at this time.