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DLT buys into Gag Reflex, launches prodco

DLT Entertainment, the UK producer and distributor behind BBC sitcom My Family, has acquired a stake in Manchester talent agency Gag Reflex and launched a regional prodco in the city.

Donald Taffner Jr

As part of the move, DLT president Donald Taffner Jr will join the Gag Reflex board alongside founder and director Lee Martin. The agency represents comedy and variety talent and produces live tours and festivals.

Furthermore, a new company, Gag Reflex Productions, will be launched in Manchester. The prodco will develop daytime, children’s TV, game and panel shows, all to be produced outside of London.

Gag Reflex Productions will be run by Martin with creative assistance from DLT creative director Darren Smith and head of entertainment Phil Tredinnick. Additional hires will be made in due course, said DLT.

The news not only marks the first regional production move for DLT but continues its recent expansion into the world of comedy and talent representation. DLT previously invested in The Soho Agency, Blue Book Artist Management, Andrew Roach Talent and MMB Creative.

The Gag Reflex Productions deal also complements DLT’s most recent investment in Mark Watson and Lianne Coop’s Impatient Productions, which also produces live and scripted comedy projects and comes soon after DLT announced CBBC commission for kids comedy Monster Court (15×10′).

“Lee is brilliant at what he does and we hope that alongside his expertise our input can help expand the company into new areas and genres and create an even wider network. Gag Reflex will have access to space and talent in London while the existing DLT team will have a foothold in one of the most vibrant industry hubs in the UK,” said Taffner Jr.

Martin added: “DLT’s investment in the company will ensure that we can continue to evolve. 2020 has been an especially challenging year for all but Donald’s long-term vision for the group is inspiring.

“With Manchester being one of the main hubs of the UK’s TV industry, Gag Reflex Productions will be a great opportunity to develop exciting new TV platforms.”

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