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Masked Singer UK producer Bandicoot hires for international expansion

The Masked Singer recently aired for a second season on ITV

Argonon-owned Bandicoot, the producer behind the UK version of The Masked Singer, had made three new appointments, including a VP of US development.

Robert Cooke

Robert Cooke has been tasked with building Bandicoot’s development slate for North America, with a focus on creating formats, IP and entertainment specifically for the US market.

Cooke joins from Renowned Films, where he spent six years working in development, having developed and pitched formats and docuseries including Back Yard Envy (Bravo), Cop Watch America (BET), The Drop (BBC Three), How To Be Anne Marie (YouTube), The Peng Life (C4) and Pranksters (ITV).

Joining Bandicoot as head of entertainment is James Lessell, who has a brief to spearhead new UK formats and content.

Lessell’s remit includes oversight of all new UK entertainment formats, reality and factual entertainment, including an upcoming new series commission and several other shows in the development pipeline.

James Lessell

Lessell will work with Bandicoot development executive Jackson Townroe to co-develop projects for the UK market. He has previously worked with Bandicoot as an executive producer (EP) and continues to act as EP on his slate of productions.

He joins having previously held roles including EP at BBC Studios, EP at Thames TV for X-Factor and series producer at Lime Pictures on The Only Way is Essex and Celebs Go Dating.

The third appointment sees Lucy Eagle join Bandicoot permanently as head of production. Eagle, formerly head of production at Cactus TV, has recently been working as production executive across Bandicoot’s entertainment series The Masked Singer and The Masked Dancer.

All three roles report into Bandicoot’s founders, MD Derek McLean and creative director Daniel Nettleton.

Lucy Eagle

The appointments follow the second series of The Masked Singer on ITV and the recent transmission of The Masked Dancer, also on ITV, with further projects in the pipeline including Peckham’s Finest for ITV2, as revealed by C21.

“The regeneration of the entertainment genre, aligned with market growth driven by new streaming platforms, has scaled up our UK and international ambitions,” said McLean and Nettleton in a joint statement.


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