In its third such deal in the last two weeks, BBC Worldwide has taken a minority equity stake in new indie venture Two Cities Television. Veteran execs Michael Jackson and Alex Graham are behind the drama shingle whose output will be distributed globally by BBC WW under a five-year deal.
Jackson, who is based in New York and will continue to work from there, has a long track record in both the UK and the U.S. He was chief executive of Channel 4 from 1997-2001 and has also been Controller of both BBC One and BBC Two. Under his C4 leadership were born such successes as Sacha Baron Cohen’s Da Ali G Show; Big Brother and Queer As Folk. He left Britain in 2001 to work for Barry Diller, ultimately becoming Chairman of Universal Television. In 2006, he became President of Programming at Diller’s IAC. His other credits include Monk and The Dead Zone.
Graham founded UK production house Wall to Wall in 1987 which is now owned by Warner Bros. Credits include Who Do You Think You Are and the feature Man On Wire. Graham exited the company in 2013.
For BBC WW, the execs’ extensive knowledge of the UK, European and U.S. markets will serve as an advantage in sourcing talent, overseas commissioning and co-production opportunities. It also helps boost the catalogue across priority genres.