EXCLUSIVE: Brian Belo’s latest TV effort is close to landing with a UK broadcaster. I’ve learned that Team Panache, a dramedy series set in the world of reality television – an arena where Belo has experience, being a former Big Brother winner and having just recently settled a lawsuit over The Only Way Is Essex with Lime Pictures and ITV – is close to being laid off at MTV UK.
Sources tell me that MTV and the Team Panache producers have engaged in discussions about the project, though representatives of MTV UK were keen to stress that nothing had been commissioned. I hear that, should the talks be successful, the broadcaster would be looking to pick up the series with a 6-10 episode order. The news of MTV circling Team Panache comes after TVWise broke the news last April that the pilot was being independently produced by Brian Belo and Ben Shillito, with plans to shop it to broadcasters once the pilot was completed. That process took some time, with one source stating that a bidding war erupted between potential broadcasters, eventually resulting in discussions beginning with MTV UK late last year.
Created by Brian Belo and Ben Shillito, Team Panache follows a group of twenty-year-olds intent on making it big on a reality television series. Shillito’s production company Firehouse Entertainment produced the pilot which starred Belo, James Bond actor Colin Salmon, Ewen MacIntosh (The Office), Thea Knight (Big Fat Gypsy Gangster), Duncan Mais (Silent Witness), Mieke Dockley (Camelot), Francesca Brown (Tide of Whispers), Naomi Millbank, Sophie Whitelock, Francesca Albanese, Mark Norris, Jon Norris and David Peters. The pilot was shot at Elstree Studios last April and was directed by Steve Lawson, with Belo and Shillito producing, and Ashton Seymour serving as the executive producer.