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BBC’s Leon swings over to Playground

UK-based drama producer Playground has appointed a BBC exec to a newly created role charged with managing the strategic growth and day-to-today running of the company.

Dan Leon

Dan Leon, formerly a BBC business manager, has been named head of business affairs and director of operations, based out of London and reporting to Playground founder and chairman Colin Callender.

Prior to joining Playground, Leon spent 11 years in the BBC’s rights and business affairs division, working in the drama commissioning team, and more recently in the central commercial, rights and business affairs unit.

He has worked on shows including BBC drama The Street and Wolf Hall and before that worked at IWC Media as a production executive.

Playground’s slate includes Howards End for BBC1 and Richard Eyre’s adaptation of King Lear, starring Anthony Hopkins, Emma Thompson and Emily Watson, for BBC2 and Amazon Prime Video.

Callender said: “I first met Dan on Wolf Hall and was immediately impressed by his deep understanding of how the business and the creative imperatives of production intersect.

“He is a great addition to our management team and, as our production slate expands under Sophie’s leadership, Dan’s commercial and operational expertise will play a vital role in the company’s ability to take full advantage of rapidly changing television landscape.”

Sophie Gardiner, head of drama and executive creative director, said Leon’s “experience and insights will be invaluable and I look forward to having him at the heart of our talented team.”

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