Three of Finland’s most experienced media executives — Eero Hietala, Lasse Koskinen and Ilkka Hynninen – have announced the launch of Take Two Studios. The new production company will focus on the origination, development and production of high-end, high-concept drama, documentaries and podcasts. The new operation is currently in development on a range of projects with international appeal, which will be announced in the coming months.
Company founders Hietala, Koskinen and Hynninen bring unrivalled knowledge of both the Finnish media market and the international content business to the new venture. Co-chair Hietala and Hynninen co-founded Aito Media in 2003, and helped steer it to become Finland’s premier producer of fiction, factual, entertainment, documentary and studio game shows.
Hietala’s and Hynninen’s executive production credits span crime, sitcom, drama, comedy, talk shows and children’s titles. Most recent projects include Rockies-nominated series Almost True and Pirjo, sitcom Mother-in-Paw and procedural crime drama Lakeside Murders. He has also created and co-produced numerous documentaries and factual entertainment shows, and been involved in adapting several international formats for the Finnish market. During their 18-year stint as Co-CEO’s of Aito Media, they produced more than 1,700 hours of programming, created multiple long-running series in both the scripted and unscripted genres, and led creative teams and projects around the world, from Russia to Australia via the UK, Canada and France.
Koskinen, who will serve as Take Two Studios’ CEO, has 21-plus years of experience in the film, games, digital media, advertising and private healthcare businesses. He started his career in the finance department of Finnkino, working up to managing director of FS Film, Svensk Filmindustri (now SF Studios) and Fox’s Finnish theatrical & video distribution operation. During his tenure at FS Film, he oversaw numerous box-office hits, including Lord of the Rings, Star Wars and Die Another Day, launched two Finnish production hubs that produced five local feature films. In 2008, Koskinen left the film industry to run Chat Republic Games, where he presided over the launch of global casual MMO sensation Superstar Racing. Over the past 11 years, Koskinen has worked for Coronaria Group, running a total of nine different companies for the group.
Take Two Studios launches with a 10-project co-production agreement with Aito Media, consisting of series in development at Aito Media created under Hietala and Hynninen. The co-production pipeline includes two hotly tipped dramas: 506 Grams of Ural Snow and Saturday Society.
506 Grams of Ural Snow, produced by Hietala and Hynninen with Aito Media’s Ella Piesala and Aito & Haapasalo Entertainment’s Ville Haapasalo, starts with the disappearance of a young man in Russia. His father, a Finnish police inspector, arrests a Russian drug lord in Helsinki — and is swiftly drawn into a deadly mission that leads to the discovery of a surprising truth about his son.
Saturday Society, produced by Aito Media’s Ella Piesala and Hynninen, tells a true story of how courageous reporters jeopardize their careers to prevent the rise of a Soviet-backed alcoholic from becoming the next president of Finland. They need to reveal the truth about their leaders. Saturday Society is a story about political power play with a main prize of the Presidency of Finland. It is based on true events of early 1980s politics and the media scene, when a group of journalists confronted the pervasive self-censorship of Finnish press by writing an exposé book of the main presidential candidates.
“After a long, successful stint growing a Finnish generalist production company to exit stage, now in this second chapter of our entrepreneurial careers we have decided to become a strong international specialist in drama and documentary production. We are full of energy and enthusiasm to bring stories we are passionate about to international screens,” announced co-founders Ilkka Hynninen and Eero Hietala.
For further information, please contact:
Cheryl Clarke at Mushroom Media on:
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