UK’s award-winning CPL Productions extends deal with Red Arrow Studios

01 Mar 2021

Danielle Lux, Murray Boland and Janet Oakes of award-winning UK based TV and audio production company CPL Productions have extended their multi-year deal with Red Arrow Studios.

Winner of the Edinburgh TV Festival’s Production Company of the Year in 2018, and runner up in 2019, CPL Productions became part of Red Arrow Studios in 2012, and has grown into one of the UK’s most respected and acclaimed independent producers. Current and recent shows include newly announced Channel 4 quiz series Quizness (wt) fronted by comedian Tom Allen; Sky One’s double BAFTA-winning series A League of Their Own, now in its 15th season, the US version Game On! for CBS, and multiple spin-off series; multi award-winning Old People’s Home for 4 Year Olds, The Restaurant That Makes Mistakes and Married At First Sight – all for Channel 4; returning comedy show There’s Something About Movies for Sky One; and multiple new series through their partnerships with leading UK talent.

Henrik Pabst, Chief Content Officer of Seven.One Entertainment Group, the entertainment arm of ProSiebenSat.1, and a member of the Red Arrow Studios advisory board, said: “CPL Productions is one of the UK’s most creative and successful production companies, and we are delighted to be extending our relationship. We can’t wait to see Danielle, Murray, Janet and their great team continue to create and produce hit UK and international TV.”

Danielle Lux, Managing Director of CPL Productions, said: “Murray and I are bound together by decades of the firmest friendship and the most creative of partnerships – these are the foundation stones of CPL. We set out to build a space where excellence is prized, creativity in all its forms is nurtured and where talented people are given the right space to do their best work. Bringing kindred spirit, Janet, into our CPL family has enabled us to further strengthen those foundations and the brilliant and endless support from Red Arrow has been invaluable. We are very excited to all be moving forward together.”

Murray Boland, Creative Director of CPL Productions, said: “Danielle and I have been best friends and collaborators for almost 30 years and I adore her. You could not wish for a better partner. She is a completely unique talent and unrivalled at creating a space for great talent to do their best work. We are incredibly proud of what we have built at CPL with Janet and are very grateful to Red Arrow for encouraging us to continue”.

Janet Oakes, Commercial Director of CPL Productions, said: “We have built thriving commercial partnerships at CPL thanks to the strong creative leadership provided by Danielle and Murray and the culture of trust and support we have created. Our relationships with broadcasters and brands are based on mutual respect, leading to award-winning brand solutions. Navigating the, often complex, deals and communication between brands, key talent, broadcasters, agencies, producers and creatives is something we pride ourselves on.”

Over their distinguished careers, Danielle and Murray have both commissioned and produced many of the UK’s most successful entertainment, comedy and factual shows – and between them, they executive produce all of CPL’s shows.

Prior to CPL Productions Danielle’s roles have included Managing Director of Celador Productions, before leading a management buy-out of the business in 2007 to become CPL; Head of Entertainment Group at Channel 4 and Controller of E4, commissioning comedy, entertainment, factual entertainment and music including Peep Show, Greenwing, Distraction, Peter Kay’s Phoenix Nights and Max and Paddy, Graham Norton, Derren Brown’s Mind Control and Emmy nominated Ali G in Da USA III with HBO. Whilst at C4 she gained the channel multiple awards including the channel record for most accolades at the Rose D’Or.  As Controller of Entertainment Commissioning at the BBC, she commissioned hit shows from Friday Night with Jonathan Ross to The Kumars at No 42 and fromVictoria Wood’s Dinner Ladies toRob Brydonin Marion and Geoff. She secured channel talent deals with talent from Steve Coogan and Jonathan Ross to Derren Brown and  Jimmy Carr, and whilst Head of Children’s and Young People’s Entertainment at Granada and LWT alongside Boland, she gave Davina McCall and Claudia Winkleman their first TV breaks.

Boland has been creating and producing formats since he was given his first break in TV by legendary producer Charlie Parsons on the BAFTA-Award-winning Network 7.  His first idea with Parsons was the inspiration for arguably the most successful ever reality format, Survivor.  After producing on iconic Channel 4 shows The Word and The Big Breakfast, he was appointed Director Of Programmes at MTV UK before Lux brought him to Channel 4 to run the then fledgling E4.  He oversaw an immediate upturn in ratings, won digital channel of the year for two years running, launched The OC, Lost, Six Feet Under, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Desperate Housewives and commissioned The Pilot Show and Your Face Or Mine.  He runs CPL’s unscripted output and has led the development of hit formats including the double BAFTA-winning A League Of Their Own, the Emmy and Grierson Award-winning Old People’s Home For 4 Year Olds, Grierson Award winner The Restaurant That Makes Mistakes and There’s Something About Movies which was recently nominated for the Rose D’Or.

Janet Oakes joined CPL in 2010 as Commercial Director to oversee the company’s commercial growth, to develop its cross-platform business and manage finance and commercial affairs.  Previous roles include overseeing finance and operations for Hasbro in the UK, Financial Controller and then Finance Director of Celador, and Commercial Director of 2waytraffic. Her commercial TV experience was forged during the global success of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire while at Celdaor and 2WayTraffic.  She also oversaw pioneering product placement on A League Of Their Own and brand integration and branded online content across all CPL shows.  During her time at CPL, branded programming on shows has won three Thinkbox awards for innovation and the company remains at the vanguard of creative solutions for brand integration and branded online content.

Red Arrow Studios International distributes all of CPL’s acclaimed content, with global tape and format sales including A League of Their OwnMarried at First Sight UK, and Old People’s Home for 4 Year Olds, which has sold as a format to over 14 territories.

Earlier this month, CPL was commissioned by Channel 4 to produce new 6 x 60’ quiz series Quizness (wt) fronted by comedian Tom Allen. The new format was commissioned following an innovative run-through programme which Channel 4’s Head of Entertainment, Phil Harris, introduced to develop ideas from independent production companies sustainably and affordably.

In November, CPL’s hit social experiment formats The Restaurant That Makes Mistakes and Old People’s Home for 4 Year Olds, both for Channel 4, won two prestigious awards: a Grierson Award for The Restaurant That Makes Mistakes, and an International Emmy Award for Old People’s Home for 4 Year Olds, which has also previously won a GriersonMeanwhile Married At First Sight continues to be one of Channel 4’s biggest reality TV success stories and was recently recommissioned with a revamped format securing the series in the Channel 4 schedules.

CPL Productions recently announced that Sky in the UK had ordered a new season of their hit entertainment show Rob & Romesh Vs, which is now airing on Sky One; and they are shooting the next instalment in the A League of Their Own Road trip series, featuring Jamie Redknapp, Freddie Flintoff and Romesh Ranganathan. Other recent series include the third season of There’s Something About Movies for Sky with Alan Carr, Jennifer Saunders and Michael Sheen, top rating kids’ gameshow Don’t Unleash the Beast for CITV, produced with Tiny House Productions, and spoken word series Life & Rhymes for Sky Arts in collaboration with the MAMA Youth Project.

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