9:00am PT by Bryn Elise Sandberg
Bunim/Murray Inks Deal with WikkedCat Entertainment
Bunim/Murray Productions (BMP) has struck an exclusive production deal with Stella Bulochnikov and Brian Sher's WikkedCat Entertainment.
Under the pact, BMP, which produces hit reality franchises including The Real World, Project Runway and Keeping Up with the Kardashians, will have exclusive access to WikkedCat’s unscripted series — with a focus on creating celeb-reality franchises.
"Bunim/Murray has a long history of creating and producing some of the most enduring reality series and franchises, and we don’t plan on slowing down," said BMP chairman and CEO Gil Goldschein. "Stella and Brian are masters of working with talent, and as we talked about the shows we all want to make, it became clear that there was a huge opportunity to partner, especially with their amazing access and our shared celeb-reality expertise."
WikkedCat is currently developing unscripted reality projects and specials with talent including Mariah Carey, Lil Wayne, Mel B and Gary Owen. The company's T.I. and Tiny: The Family Hustle is in its fifth season on VH1, and spinoff Tiny & Shekinah’s Weave Trip recently aired. The pair also produced E! docu-series Christina Milian Turned Up, which is shooting its second season, and Nicki Minaj: My Truth, along with MTV’s Road to Redemption. In addition, the company has an overall deal with Kelsey Grammer and Lionsgate for scripted series, where they executive produced Starz's Boss.
"We are honored to be partnering with BMP, a company that pioneered reality television, to continue to create talent-focused unscripted content that connects with viewers, while also having a lot of fun in the process," said Bulochnikov. Sher added: "All it took was one meeting with Jon (Murray) and Gil to know that Bunim-Murray was the ideal home for us. They are a world-class organization with an unmatched track record, so we see this as the perfect opportunity to marry our talent relationships with their production expertise.”
Through her company Wikked TV, Bulochnikov created and launched shows including Paris Hilton’s My New BFF, which was formatted in the U.K. and UAE, T.I.’ s Road to Redemption, 50 Cent: The Money and the Power and DJ AM’ s Gone Too Far, all for MTV. Prior to that, Bulochnikov built her “celebreality” brand as VH1's senior vice president celebrity talent and original programming.
Sher, meanwhile, was a talent agent at ICM from 2001-2009. In 2009, he launched his own management and production company Category 5 Entertainment, where he continues to represent talent for film, television and music. In the reality space, Sher executive produced BET’s Michael Vick Project and Oxygen’s Sisterhood of Hip Hop.