Blue Ant Studios expands production & development leadership

L-R: Aileen Gardner & Zachary Frank

Canada’s Blue Ant Studios has appointed Aileen Gardner and Zachary Frank to two newly created leadership roles within its production and development divisions.

Gardner has been named head of production, Canada, and is charged with leading the operations for the studio’s slate of productions in the country. She will report to Laura Michalchyshyn, CCO & co-president of global production and Sam Sniderman, co-president, global production, Blue Ant Media.

Gardner arrives at Blue Ant Studios with more than 20 years’ experience in broadcast media production across the UK, US, and Canada in genres from one-off documentary to lifestyle series with companies such as Mentorn, Endemol, Cineflix and Scott Brother’s Entertainment.  Since arriving in Canada she has overseen shows such as Nazi Hunters for Discovery, the launch of American Pickers for A&E and the reboot of Brother vs Brother for HGTV.

Frank, meanwhile, has been hired as VP of development, in which role he will work with the studio’s team in Los Angeles to further expand its development slate of limited and returnable series with an emphasis on the Canadian, UK and American markets. Frank will report to Jennifer Harkness, SVP of unscripted, Blue Ant Studios, while working closely with Gardner in Toronto.

Prior to joining Blue Ant, Frank was senior director at Cream Productions, where he developed projects including History Of The Sitcom for CNN, If I Should Die for Discovery ID, Fear Thy Roommate for Bell Networks, The World Without for Corus and A Ghost Ruined My Life for Travel Channel.

“With Aileen’s incredible experience in producing content across multiple genres for global markets; and Zach’s deep network in the development space across the US, Canada and UK, we’re excited to continue Blue Ant Studios’ expansion and debut a fresh lineup of projects and voices to be shared with the world,” commented Michalchyshyn.

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