Time Studios Developing Russ & Daughters Family Drama Series – Deadline

EXCLUSIVE: Time Studios has entered a shopping agreement with Niki Russ Federman and Josh Russ Tupper, fourth-generation members of the Russ family who now own its iconic New York culinary brand Russ & Daughters, to develop a scripted series examining its history and the family behind Item.

The project marks Time Studios’ first under its newly inked first-look deal with producer Kim Rozenfeld—who formerly served as Head of Nonfiction Development and Head of Current Programming at Apple TV+—and his Half Full Studios. The producers are currently out to writers to help craft the story of the landmark institution.

Russ & Daughters is a historic deli opened by Joel Russ on New York’s Lower East Side in 1914. Today, it remains a culinary icon, world-famous for providing the highest quality, when it comes to smoked fish, caviar, bagels, bialys, Babka and other Jewish delicacies. The original shop on East Houston Street is enshrined as a New York treasure and reflects four generations of the Russ family’s dedication to excellence, history and tradition. It is also the first known American business with “& Daughters” in its name.

First cousins ​​Federman and Tupper opened Russ & Daughters Cafe, a restaurant close to the original store, on the 100th anniversary of Russ & Daughters in 2014—two years later expanding with another restaurant, Russ & Daughters at the Jewish Museum. Russ & Daughters came Brooklyn in 2019, in the penumbra of pandemic, with that location housing their kitchens, bakery, national shipping facility, and a retail counter.

Federman, Tupper and Russ & Daughters have been honored by the New York City Mayor’s Office, the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, The Foundation for Jewish Culture, The New York State Senate, and the American Jewish Historical Society, which mounted the 2019 exhibition, “ Russ & Daughters: An Appetizing Story.” Russ & Daughters Cafe, meanwhile, was named #2 on the New York Times’ list of “The 10 Best New Restaurants of 2014.” Russ & Daughters and the first cousins ​​behind it have featured frequently in a variety of media, including the documentary, The Sturgeon Queenssuch TV series as Taste the Nation with Padma Lakshmi and No Reservationsand in publications including New York Times, The New Yorker, Food&Wine, Zagat and fashion.

Ian Orefice and Kaveh Veyssi will executive produce the Russ & Daughters series for Time Studios, alongside Kim Rozenfeld for Half Full Studios, with Federman and Tupper serving as consulting producers.

“What started as an immigrant story about pursuing a new life in America grew into generations of family members with their trials and tribulations set against the backdrop of dozens of critical moments in our society,” said Time Studios’ VP of Film & TV, Kaveh Veyssi. “While their story is so specific and unique, there are elements of it that will appeal to everyone, and that’s what we aim to do at TIME Studios: tell impactful stories that are universal and accessible to all.”

“The story of Russ & Daughters – and the constellation of characters that make up our delicious world – spans over a century and is about perseverance, family, community and connection,” said Federman and Tupper in a joint statement. “We are so thrilled to partner with Kim Rozenfeld and TIME Studios to tell our story, which we know will literally and figuratively make viewers hungry.”

“Bringing the legacy of Russ & Daughters to television has been a passion of mine for some time now,” added Half Full Studios’ President, Rozenfeld, “and partnering with TIME Studios expands our ability to share entertaining stories which will spark meaningful conversation. ”

Time Studios is the Emmy Award-winning television and film production division of Time, which focuses on the development, production and distribution of truth-based premium unscripted and scripted storytelling that moves the world. The Russ & Daughters project is among a burgeoning slate of movies and television shows that Time Studios’ scripted team has been building over the last year, including Women of the Year, a previously announced scripted anthology series with Amazon. The announcement also comes on the heels of a successful run at Sundance with the acquisition of The Territory by National Geographic, and the launch of the critically acclaimed docuseries Jeen-Yuhs: A Kanye Trilogy on Netflix.

As President of Half Full Studios, Rozenfeld produces both scripted and nonfiction series. He is currently an exec producer of Apple TV+’s critically acclaimed docuseries, homeand also recently created Watch the Sound, a series he has packaged with Academy and Grammy Award-winning producer, Mark Ronson and Academy Award-winning director, Morgan Neville. Rozenfeld is repped by CAA.

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