Nat Geo Nabs Two British Magic Shows for U.S. (Exclusive)

"The Happenings"

U.K.-based TV sales banner Passion Distribution sells "The Happenings" and "Dynamo: Magician Impossible" to the U.S. for UKTV, the joint venture between Scripps Networks Interactive and BBC Worldwide.

LONDON – National Geographic Channel (NGC) has inked a deal with U.K.-based TV sales banner Passion Distribution for a pair of magician-led shows from UKTV, a British TV networks joint venture of lifestyle channels firm Scripps Networks Interactive and BBC Worldwide.

NGC-US will broadcast the new show The Happenings and the second season of Dynamo: Magician Impossible, scheduled to premiere later this year.

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In The Happenings, double-act magicians Barry and Stuart convince unsuspecting residents in towns across the U.K. and U.S. that mysterious events are occurring. Through magic and illusion, the pair make the unbelievable believable and create such strange phenomena that the townsfolk are left stunned and bewildered.

The four 60-minute episodes were produced for UKTV’s entertainment channel Watch and are a co-production between Crook Productions and Objective Productions, the producers of Derren Brown. The series aired in the U.K. throughout December 2013.

Dynamo: Magician Impossible has been one of Passion’s biggest-selling shows ever, licensing into more than 200 territories. The UKTV series follows Dynamo as he travels around the globe showcasing his street magic to celebrities and the general public. NGC will air the BAFTA-nominated second season of the hit show and have an option on further series. The show has been a number-one hit in South Africa, Poland, and Denmark and has smashed ratings in Australia and India.

Produced by Phil McIntyre Television and Inner Circle Films for Watch, Dynamo is currently airing on public broadcaster BBC One in the U.K.

The deal was brokered by Passion CEO Sally Miles, working closely with Jonathan Newman, UKTV’s head of program distribution, and National Geographic Channel CEO David Lyle.

Miles said: "Magic is a largely untapped genre in the U.S., and we are excited to be working with internationally renowned National Geographic Channel to bring two of our best shows to American audiences. We believe they are the perfect home to showcase amazing talent and stunts."

"These programs will continue to build upon franchises that complement our hit series Brain Games," added NGC’s Lyle.

Passion Distribution was launched by Miles in 2008. In November 2012, Passion Distribution became part of the Tinopolis Group, merging with Mentorn International and increasing the catalog to more than 8,000 hours.