People/Biz

BBC Studios ups Lisa Opie, strikes first-look deals

UK pubcaster the BBC has appointed Lisa Opie managing director of UK productions for its production arm BBC Studios. Opie (pictured) will be responsible for delivering BBC Studios Productions’ business plan, defining and ...
April 4, 2019

UK pubcaster the BBC has appointed Lisa Opie managing director of UK productions for its production arm BBC Studios.

Opie (pictured) will be responsible for delivering BBC Studios Productions’ business plan, defining and delivering the commercial strategy and be accountable for risk and business management.

She will assume the role immediately and report to Ralph Lee, director of content at BBC Studios. In addition, she will sit on the BBC Studios executive committee and work closely with the genre managing directors.

Opie is currently managing director of factual production at BBC Studios, where she leads the teams responsible for programs like Blue Planet II, Killed By My Debt and Basquiat: Rags to Riches for BBC, along with third-party commissions including Wildlife Warriors (formerly The Red List) for Discovery, Royal Wedding Watch for PBS, Fatberg Autopsy: The Secrets of the Sewers for Channel 4 and Stay Free: The Story of The Clash for Spotify.

She joined the BBC in 2013 and previously served as controller of business for factual and daytime.

“Lisa is a brilliant leader, with immense energy and business acumen,” said Lee in a statement. “She has contributed greatly to BBC Studios’ commercial success to date. Under her watch the factual production team has won a raft of exciting commissions and produced outstanding content. I am delighted that she is taking on this new role, helping to ensure we continue to deliver and grow our world-class programming across the full breadth of our genres and specialisms.”

Elsewhere, BBC Studios has inked new first-look deals with two indie prodcos: UK-based Magnum Media and LA-based Fandom Fiction.

Magnum is known for producing studio entertainment formats, quiz shows and reality formats, while Fandom Fiction is a TV ideas company that devises international formats across primetime entertainment, scripted and music.

The Magnum Media deal was struck by Nicki Mcdermott, head of acquisitions for factual entertainment, entertainment and formats, and the Fandom Fiction deal by Valerie Bruce, SVP commercial director, LA.

BBC Studios is handling all international rights for projects stemming from both partnerships.

About The Author
Daniele Alcinii is a news editor at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joined the RS team in 2015 with experience in journalism following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and with communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.

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