Former NDF President Eric Wilbers launches Bravado Media

Eric Wilbers, who served as managing director of the production company NDF until the end of March, created the international content company Bravado Media, headquartered in Munich.

Bravado has acquired all NDF shares in Italy’s Viola Film (80% stake), headed by Alessandro Passador, Belgium-based Bravado Fiction (also 80% stake), headed by Jan Theys, and Wilbers increases its stake in NDF international production, which he will continue to manage with Matthias Walter.

The new company will make its market debut at next week’s trade fair for audiovisual content Mipcom in Cannes.

“Bravado Media will become a contemporary and modern content house: a global, open-format, story-driven, and content-driven site,” Wilbers said. “Whether it’s high-quality TV movies or movies for streaming creators, or event series for private and public service partners, and of course for streaming services. With its unique network of creativity and competence, Bravado will help producers and broadcasters bring exciting stories.”

Bravado already has a wide range of new productions to accompany its launch: Welbers has teamed up with Frank Doelger of Intaglio to produce an advanced series of Frank Schätzing’s bestselling novel “The Swarm” with NDF Intl. ZDF production. Wilbers is co-producing “The Man Who Died,” based on Finnish author Antti Tumainen’s bestselling novel, for Finnish broadcasting platform Eliza Vidi. And after the first season of Degeto / Das Erste’s “Sophie Cross” co-production, filming began in September for the second season. Other projects in development include an international series based on Andreas Eichbach’s novel The Master of All Things.

Production on the TV series “Stranded”, in which German actor Rick Schmid appears in one of the lead roles, concluded as a co-production with Italy’s Eliseo, with Mediawan Rights handling international distribution.

The lineup also includes Bravado’s first “On the Ropes” series in Belgium, a crime drama about defense attorneys and prosecutors investigating organized crime in the Belgian coastal city of Antwerp.

Viola was behind productions for Italian radio RAI such as “Everybody Is Perfect”, known locally as “Avvocato Malinconico”, which airs in October. Viola has also worked in Italy as a service producer for “The Swarm” as well as the Sky series “Funeral for a Dog”.

Wilbers, who has overseen sales, co-production and production company development for Beta Film as well as projects such as “Downfall” and “Borgia,” has been responsible since 2015, as general manager at NDF, for such high-end series as “The Swarm” and major television productions Like “Alpencops” for RTL. Additionally, while in this position, he launched the joint project Fiction Magnet between NDF and ZDF Studios.

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