Discovery U.K. to Rebrand Home as HGTV, Revive Gok Wan's 'How to Look Good Naked'
Kathleen Finch, chief lifestyle brands officer at Discovery, talked about the U.S. HGTV brand, acquired in the takeover of Scripps, during an upfront event Wednesday in London.
Discovery on Wednesday announced that it would rebrand the U.K. channel Home as HGTV and revive former Channel 4 series How to Look Good Naked, hosted by U.K. fashion consultant Gok Wan, for its Really network in Britain.
Production firm Maverick TV will revive the hit series for six hourlong episodes in which the host will help two participants each "overcome their insecurities, taking them on a journey of self-discovery in the lead-up to the grand finale naked photo shoot."
It is Clare Laycock’s first commission for Really since Discovery recently took over the channel in a deal with BBC Studios that split up their UKTV joint venture networks in Britain, with Discovery getting the lifestyle brands. The original Channel 4 show aired in 2006. Carson Kressley hosted a U.S. version of the format on Lifetime in 2008.
Discovery unveiled the news at an upfront event in London, where Wan served as the emcee. "We have never been in a worse shape with our body confidence and low self-esteem," he said. “The rise of social media has brought with it a tornado of confusion where I believe we no longer know what we think is beautiful. There has never been a greater need for an antidote to body confidence than How to Look Good Naked brought back by Discovery’s Really channel.”
Kathleen Finch, chief lifestyle brands officer at Discovery, appeared at the event to talk about the U.S. HGTV brand, which Discovery acquired last year as part of its $14.6 billion takeover of Scripps Networks Interactive.
Kasia Kieli, president and managing director of Discovery EMEA, told the London upfront: “The acquisition of Scripps last year gave us additional momentum. We are now the No. 3 media company in Europe, reaching 306 million viewers monthly with 3 billion hours of content through a network of more than 50 channel brands and a growing suite of direct-to-consumer products.”
Added James Gibbons, executive vp and general manager, Discovery UK, Ireland & Australia/New Zealand: “The acquisition of Scripps Networks and the UKTV split gave us access to the biggest lifestyle brands from the U.S. and allowed us to take control of Really, Home and Food in the U.K. They enable us to deliver scale — so vital in today’s fragmented and disrupted media world.”
In another programming announcement Wednesday, Discovery said its U.K. digital network Quest Red has ordered six episodes of the new series Being Reuben, an observational docuseries that follows Welsh teen internet sensation Reuben de Maid and his family as they juggle the demands of his celebrity career with everyday life.