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MGM Television has set its sights on Britain’s unscripted potential, launching a new London-based division dedicated to the production of original unscripted content in the U.K.
The new group — MGM International Unscripted Content — will focus on the production of an original slate of unscripted programming, adapting the studio’s unscripted slate of formats and expanding its reach with U.K.-based talent.
Heading up the division is Dom Bird, previously head of formats for Channel 4 and former creative director at BBC Entertainment. Bird is a longtime associate of Mark Burnett, MGM’s chairman of its Worldwide Television Group, who made the announcement Thursday.
“I’ve known Dom for more than 15 years, he has a keen understanding of how to build great shows that relate to audiences worldwide,” said Burnett. “The U.K. is a very important market for MGM and I’m excited that Dom will be leading our charge of unscripted content.”
At Channel 4, Bird greenlit a slate of shows including Hunted, Lego Masters, Seven Year Switch, Tattoo Fixers and Celebs Go Dating, amongst others. While at the BBC, he was the executive producer and showrunner of Dragons’ Den, produced in the U.S. as Shark Tank by MGM TV, before taking on the role of creative director for entertainment.
“Mark Burnett and the team at MGM really are the very best in the business, and I’m thrilled to be joining their efforts to expand the reach of this iconic company,” said Bird
Bird will jointly report to MGM’s Barry Poznick, president of unscripted and alternative television and Orion Television; and Scot Cru, executive vp global formats and unscripted content. He will be based in MGM’s London headquarters.
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