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A+E Networks, Rachael Ray Cook Up a Lifestyle Programming Joint Venture

Rachael Ray is getting back into the TV kitchen.

A+E Networks has formed a joint venture with Ray’s Free Food Studios to produce a raft of lifestyle programming. Under the deal, A+E will take a 50 percent stake in Free Food Studios — which Ray formed last year with long-time collaborators Brian Flanagan, Anthony Amoia and Sean Lee of Intentional Content — and produce 278 episodes’ worth of programming for A+E Networks’ Home Made Nation programming block. The block airs on weekend mornings on the A&E Network and Mondays on sister channel FYI, as well as on the company’s FAST services.

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Ray is set to host two cooking shows, Rachael Ray’s Meals in Minutes and Rachael Ray’s Tuscany, the latter of which will film at her villa in Italy.

“Today, I just finished writing over 80 pages of recipes and production notes for my groundbreaking new partnership with A+E Networks. I am so excited for this new chapter of my life to open,” Ray said in a statement. “Viewers can expect to see me cooking in both of my homes, in upstate New York and Tuscany, and creating new shows that will feature an amazing group of diverse and unique culinary talents. We have been working on this partnership for some time and this is just the beginning.”

Said A+E Networks programming head Rob Sharenow, “There is no one more synonymous with culinary programming than Rachael Ray and the team at Free Food Studios. The team’s expertise and prowess in developing and producing high quality content that viewers crave is second to none, and we look forward to working together to bring Rachael and a new crop of talent to A+E Networks and screens around the world across all platforms.”

Intentional Content has worked with Ray on several of her TV shows, including 30 Minute Meals, Rachael Ray’s Rebuild and Rachael Ray’s Italian Dream Home. “When Sean, Anthony and I started Free Food with Rachael, library ownership and scale were crucial to our collective mission statement,” said Flanagan. “During that same period of time, A+E Networks were great partners in helping us launch Rachael in the home space with Italian Dream Home and Rachael Ray’s Rebuild, so when it came time to scale and distribute our expanding food content library, partnering with A+E made complete sense.”

Ray, Flanagan, Amoia and Lee will be executive producers on all projects stemming from the deal. Salem Partners advised A+E on the transaction.

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