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Variety Coverage of Participant Media Conference and Panel at Toronto Film Festival


Toronto: Jeff Skoll Foresees Massive Growth For Participant

September 6, 2013 | 05:35PM PT

Founder forecasts 2,000 employees in 10 years

By Dave McNary

On the heels of its film “The Fifth Estate” launching the Toronto Intl. Film Festival, Participant Media topper Jeff Skoll has offered a thoroughly bulllish vision of how his nine-year-old company will look in 2023.

“Ten years from now, I’d like Participant to have 2,000 employees and be producing content in every country of the world,” Skoll said Friday at the festival’s keynote industry panel at the Glenn Gould Center. “I believe that in 10 years, the majority of our content will be in languages other than English.”

The company currently has 219 employees and has produced about 45 films. It also announced Friday that it had partnered for a sixth time on a film with DreamWorks on “The Hundred Foot Journey”; in addition to “Estate,” that association has brought hits “The Help” and “Lincoln.”

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Participant MediaAbout Participant Media

Founded in 2004 by Jeff Skoll, Participant Media’s (www.participantmedia.com) content combines the power of a good story well told with opportunities for real world impact and awareness around the most pressing global issues of our time. As an industry content leader, Participant annually produces up to six narrative feature films, five documentary films, three episodic television series, and more than 40 hours of digital short form programming, through its digital subsidiary SoulPancake—all aimed at entertainment that inspires social awareness and engaging audiences to participate in positive social change. Participant’s content and social impact mandate speaks directly to the rise of today’s “conscious consumer,” representing over 2 billion consumers who are compelled to make impactful content a priority focus. Through its worldwide network of traditional and digital distribution, aligned with partnerships with key non-profit and NGO organizations, Participant is positioned uniquely within the industry to engage a rapidly growing audience while bringing global awareness and action to today’s most vital issues.

Participant’s more than 80 films, including Spotlight, Contagion, Lincoln, The Help, He Named Me Malala, The Look of Silence, CITIZENFOUR, Food, Inc. and An Inconvenient Truth, have collectively earned 56 Academy Award® nominations and 12 wins, including Best Picture for Spotlight and Best Foreign Language Film for A Fantastic Woman. Participant’s digital entertainment division, SoulPancake (www.soulpancake.com), is an award-winning provider of thought-provoking, joyful, and uplifting digital content including such widely popular series as Kid President and The Science of Happiness and reaches an audience of nearly 9 million fans. Follow Participant Media on Twitter and on Facebook and Instagram. Follow SoulPancake on Twitter and on Facebook and Instagram.