Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato’s World of Wonders Prods. is developing three reality-series projects centered on strong personalities.
“We’ve become big enough as a production company with the resources to be aggressive in finding real-life characters” who could succeed in a multi-episode series, said Barbato, whose World of Wonders produces such series as “Wife, Mom, Bounty Hunter” for WE and “Tori & Dean: Inn Love” for Oxygen.
“Allison Margolin: The Dopest Attorney in Town,” the first of the new development, deals with a Los Angeles lawyer who specializes in medical-marijuana cases while working for her family’s practice, which includes her mother, stepfather and ex-stepfather.
The second, “Beauty School Dropout,” focuses on the actor Jim J. Bullock (“Too Close for Comfort”) as he charts a second career as the would-be owner of a hair salon. Bullock will let cameras follow him as he matriculates in beauty school and applies for a license to manage a beauty shop.
Jeffree Star, a 20-year-old cross-dresser with pink hair who has 550,000 friends on MySpace, is the focus of the third, to be called “Jeffree Star.” Bailey calls Star a “digital polymath,” who writes and performs his own songs and has become the opening act for Cyndi Lauper’s summer tour.
Bailey said he and Barbato are doing these projects inhouse because “the industry’s model is changing. The demand among cable networks for talent in the reality and documentary areas has become overwhelming.”
So Bailey is willing to “finance internally a pilot or a demo tape and cut to the chase,” convinced that World of Wonders has a chance of getting all three shows placed on networks fairly quickly.
WOW’s partner on “Allison Margolin” is Rigberg Entertainment, and on “Jeffree Star” it’s the producing team of Darren Stein and Clint Catalyst.