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Fremantle’s Naked appoints Whisper exec Karen Knowles as head of production

Fremantle-owned unscripted prodco Naked has appointed Karen Knowles as its head of production, joining from sport specialist Whisper.

Karen Knowles

Knowles currently oversees Whisper’s branded, documentary and factual entertainment programmes and has helped grow the business from 57 people to more than 200 in just three years.

In her new role she will manage Naked’s slate which includes The Apprentice (BBC One), The Rap Game UK (BBC Three), Grand Designs (Channel 4), Planet Sex (Hulu and BBC Three), Secret Crush (ITV2), Life and Limb: The Mission Millionairess (ITV) and Great Coastal Railway Journeys (BBC Two).

She will report to Tamara Howe, director of commercial and operations, and work closely with MD Fatima Salaria and the rest of the leadership team. She takes up the post in early autumn.

Howe said: “The experience and energy that Karen brings to this role is second to none. Her enviable credit list across multiple genres, from documentary through to features and entertainment, along with her genuine commitment to nurturing talent, makes her the perfect fit for Naked.”

At Whisper, Knowles currently oversees shows including Ben Stokes: Phoenix from the Ashes (Amazon), Beauty Rewind Clinic (UKTV), Billy Connolly Does…(UKTV), and is the head of diversity and inclusion.

She has also worked on sport and branded documentaries including the Tokyo Paralympics 2020, F1 Highlights, The Talk, Billy Monger: Changing Gear (all for Channel 4) and Inside Monaco (co-pro with Spun Gold for BBC One).

Previously, she was production exec at Ricochet where her credits include The Repair Shop (BBC Two), The Bachelor (Channel 5) and Food Unwrapped (Channel 4). Karen also worked at Thames (a Fremantle label) on Take Me Out and All Star Family Fortunes.

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