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Drag Race prodco WoW opens UK office

World of Wonder, the LA-based prodco behind the Drag Race franchise, has set up an office in the UK and hired the former director of production and operations at UK indie Blast! Films to run it.

Johnni Javier

Johnni Javier will head the London arm of the media company as part of an international expansion.

A UK version of RuPaul’s Drag Race airs on BBC3 and two more international iterations of the format have already been commissioned this year.

The first Australian-New Zealand version, RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under, aired on BBC3 and is now available on BBC VoD service iPlayer, while Drag Race España is available in the UK on World of Wonder’s streamer WOW Presents Plus.

Javier will help the firm tap UK talent and develop shows from within the UK for the local and global market.

He began his career in television at World of Wonder and, after producing and directing, became head of production in 2006. He joined Blast! Films in 2014 and has overseen all its content for both the UK and US, including Channel 4’s Jade: The Reality Star Who Changed Britain, BBC1’s Forensics: The Real CSI and Sky Documentaries’ Liverpool Narcos.

Javier said: “I am thrilled to be returning to World of Wonder and to be working with such a dynamic team and creative force within the industry.”

Fenton Bailey, a co-founder of World of Wonder, said: “We feel very fortunate to welcome Johnni back to World of Wonder at a key point in our growth. He is a seasoned and skilled executive who understands the DNA of our brand. He will be invaluable in shepherding the continued success of World of Wonder and WOW Presents Plus in the UK and beyond.”

In other news, World of Wonder is producing Catch and Kill: The Podcast Tapes, a 6×30’ documentary series for US premium cablenet HBO.

Directed by company founders Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato the series is based on Ronan Farrow’s podcast and bestselling book Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies and A Conspiracy to Protect Predators.

It will premiere with back-to-back episodes on Monday July 12.

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