BBC Studios is to be recognized with Mipcom’s first ever Studio of Distinction award at this year’s October market and CEO Tom Fussell will be joined by BBC DG Tim Davie for a speech on the first day. The award has been forged to mark a landmark achievement by a global studio and is being given as the BBC turns 100, and its international broadcasting operation becomes 90. Davie, who was BBC Studios CEO before being replaced by Fussell last year, will talk about the “enduring importance of the BBC at home and around the world,” while Fussell will discuss the “rapid pace of change” at the studio behind the likes of Frozen Planet II, Good Omens and Top Gear. BBC Studios is coming off the back of a record year that saw profits soar by more than 50% and turnover increase by 30%. The commercial arm is becoming ever more important to the BBC as it grapples with hundreds of millions of pounds of savings per year and faces challenges to its funding model. “Our first recipients could not be more timely or relevant given the extraordinary international impact and ongoing influence of this unique producer, broadcaster and distributor,” said Lucy Smith, Director of Mipcom and Mip Junior, the latter of which will see an address from BBC Studios MD, Kids & Family, Cecilia Persson.
‘Searching For Sugar Man’ Producer Passion Adds Head Of Development
Searching for Sugar Man producer Passion has added a Head of Development to its Docs team. Cathal McElhinney joins from Box to Box Films where he was Development Executive most recently working on Apple TV+’s Make or Break and an upcoming four-parter on Carlos Ghosn. Passion Docs Creative Director David Moulton called McElhinney a “talented developer who brings a wealth of rich storytelling experience to the team and will be instrumental in building and developing our ambitious premium slate of series and single docs.” Passion Docs sits within Passion and most recently had films The Real Charlie Chaplin and The Rescue nominated at the News and Documentary Emmys.
BBC Takes ‘Bridge Of Lies’ To Celebrity Primetime
The BBC has commissioned a primetime celebrity version of Ross Kemp-hosted daytime quiz Bridge of Lies. STV Studios’ show will air next year and feature teams of celebrity contestants, while a second season of the non-celebrity daytime version has also been greenlit. Bridge of Lies sees teams of contestants competing for cash by crossing a bridge made up of stepping stones across the studio floor. Each stepping stone has a different option, and the players must try to get from A to B by stepping on the truths and avoiding the lies, or risk falling off the bridge and out of the game.