Mark Burnett, MGM and Canada's Bell Media Unveil First Joint Reality Pilot

Mark Burnett Beard - H 2015
AP Images/Invision

Mark Burnett Beard - H 2015

'Dream Funded: Let the Crowd Decide' sees entrepreneurs pitch ideas to 100 consumers with $250 each to back new products.

After Shark Tank and The Apprentice, Mark Burnett has his next potential business world reality series — Dream Funded: Let the Crowd Decide, a one-hour pilot hatched by Canadian broadcaster Bell Media's partnership with United Artists Media Group.

Other backers include Burnett's production partner, Roma Downey; Hearst Entertainment; Omnicom Canada's Highway Entertainment; and Entertainment One.

The Dream Funded pilot, to be hosted by veteran Canadian TV sports broadcaster James Duthie and showrun by Stuart Coxe, will shoot in Toronto.

"With our partners' stellar background in nonscripted entertainment, we anticipate the pilot will deliver high-stakes drama and real-life happy endings," Phil King, president of CTV, sports, and entertainment programming at Bell Media, said in a statement Friday.



Bell Media's joint venture with United Artists Media Group was unveiled last year to co-develop new TV formats for Canadian and international audiences. Bell Media got into business with its American partners after MGM acquired a majority 55 percent stake in One Three Media and LightWorkers Media, the companies co-owned by Burnett and Downey.

CTV has produced local versions of international formats such as The Amazing Race Canada, Masterchef Canada, Canadian Idol and So You Think You Can Dance Canada. As it develops its own formats, the Dream Funded pilot will feature seven entrepreneurs, or "dreamers," who pitch ideas to 100 customers with $250 each to back new products.

Celebrity entrepreneur experts Amber MacArthur and Ron Tite will advise the dreamers, who take home all investments secured from the crowd, up to $25,000. The dreamer with the most investments wins another $25,000.