Byron Allen is the Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Entertainment Studios and is a worldwide leader in the entertainment industry. Mr. Allen’s foray into television production began in Los Angeles in 1993 when he founded his company with the launch of his first series — ENTERTAINERS WITH BYRON ALLEN — a weekly, one-hour series profiling the current stars of film and television. ENTERTAINERS is still on-the-air today, and is cleared in nearly all television households nationwide.
Entertainment Studios currently produces, distributes, and sells advertising for 41 television series, making it the largest independent producer/distributor of first-run syndicated programming for broadcast television globally. The newest program ES launched premiered in September 2017 – the new comedy game show FUNNY YOU SHOULD ASK – which airs five days a week and is cleared in 95 percent of all U.S. broadcast television markets. Among the company’s top programs are the Emmy-winning CARS.TV, sitcoms MR. BOX OFFICE and THE FIRST FAMILY, as well numerous other programs including: ENTERTAINERS WITH BYRON ALLEN, COMICS UNLEASHED WITH BYRON ALLEN, the Emmy-nominated court series AMERICA’S COURT WITH JUDGE ROSS, the Emmy-nominated court series WE THE PEOPLE WITH GLORIA ALLRED, JUSTICE FOR ALL WITH CRISTINA PEREZ, COMEDY.TV, BEAUTIFUL HOMES & GREAT ESTATES, KICKIN’ IT WITH BYRON ALLEN, PETS.TV, RECIPE.TV, CAREER DAY, WHO WANTS TO DATE A COMEDIAN?, THE YOUNG ICONS, and THE GOSSIP QUEENS.
In 2009, Allen became the first television entrepreneur to own and launch a portfolio of six 24-Hour HD television networks simultaneously. These six networks are: PETS.TV, COMEDY.TV, RECIPE.TV, CARS.TV, ES.TV, and MYDESTINATION.TV In 2012, Entertainment Studios launched its seventh HD cable network, JUSTICECENTRAL.TV, a 24/7 HD legal and news cable television network whose programming features the biggest names in law dedicated to courtroom shows, legal news, and a broad range of law-oriented original content. In March 2018, Entertainment Studios purchased its eight cable network, THE WEATHER CHANNEL in a $300 million deal. THE WEATHER CHANNEL is available in 85 million U.S. households.
In 2015, Allen further extended the scope of Entertainment Studios with the purchase of Freestyle Releasing, now called Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures, a full-service, theatrical motion picture distribution company that specializes in representing independent companies, major studios, and mini-major studios for the purpose of exhibiting their films as first-class theatrical releases. ESMP released 2017’s highest-grossing independent movie, the shark thriller 47 METERS DOWN, which has grossed over $44.3 million to date. In 2018, ESMP also released the critically-acclaimed and commercially successful Western HOSTILES and the historic mystery-thriller CHAPPAQUIDDICK. Upcoming releases include the Keanu Reeves sci-fi thriller REPLICAS the John Krasinski/Emily Blunt-starring animated feature ANIMAL CRACKERS, and Joe Carnahan’s Mel Gibson/Naomi Watts starring action-thriller BOSS LEVEL. The digital distribution unit of Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures, Freestyle Digital Media, supplies quality commercial film and TV content directly to all US VOD/SVOD rental DVD/Kiosks and theaters using the latest cloud-based technologies to automate digital workflow. Freestyle Digital Media provides our content audience a positive digital viewing experience on every device everywhere.
With an ever-expanding library of over 5,000 hours of wholly-owned content, Entertainment Studios provides programming to traditional and emerging distribution platforms, including 1,400 television stations across the U.S. The company mission is to provide quality programming to television viewers, online users, and Fortune 500 advertising partners.
Allen’s interest in show business began during his childhood, when he would accompany his mother to NBC studios in Burbank where she worked as a publicist. Free to roam the sound stages, Allen would sneak onto THE TONIGHT SHOW set, sit behind Johnny Carson’s desk and play talkshow host. But he took it one step further, and at age 14, Allen put together his first stand-up routine and began appearing on amateur night at comedy clubs throughout the Los Angeles area. At one performance, comedian Jimmy Walker saw the act and was so impressed that he invited the 14 year-old comedian to join his comedy writing team along side promising young comedians Jay Leno and David Letterman. At age 18, Allen made his national television debut on THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JOHNNY CARSON. Allen holds the distinction of being the youngest standup comedian ever to have performed on the show. Watching Allen’s network television debut werethe producers of NBC’s REAL PEOPLE, who were so taken with his comfortable, relaxed style that they made him an offer the very next day to co-host what would become the first reality-based program ever broadcast on television. He accepted, and REAL PEOPLE dominated the network’s Wednesday night prime-time for five years.
Allen’s experience hosting REAL PEOPLE was his training ground for the business of television. His gig was to travel thenation with a crew and shoot segments profiling real people across America’s heartland. So while he was getting his feet wet as a television personality, he was also learning the ins and outs of television production. The experience also prepared him to take on the business of advertising and syndication, which he learned in the trenches by personally calling station owners, programming directors and advertisers, one-by-one and market-by-market.
For many years, Mr.Allen was the annual host of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s Annual “Dinner of Champions.” This annual event is sponsored by and benefits the Southern California Chapter of the National MS Society. It raises funds that support MS research worldwide, as well as vital programs and services for people living with MS and their families.
Most recently, Mr. Allen was presented with the 2014 Children’s Inspiration Award from the Los Angeles charitable organization A Place Called Home. The Children’s Inspiration Award is presented to an individual whosevision is large enough to embrace the “impossible” and whose tenacity is great enough to achieve things that “can’t be done.” The recipient has overcome hardships and obstacles, and transcended in ways that serve as an inspiration. In2017, Byron Allen launched his company’s first annual Oscar Gala, an Academy Awards viewing party held at the Beverly Hills Montage Hotel on Oscar night –which raised over $1 million for Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. From humble beginnings himself, Byron Allen has made good and made a difference!