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Sony’s reality Fever

Joint venture company will be led by Mortimer

LONDON — Record label giant Sony BMG Music Entertainment (U.K.) is expanding its TV production business by creating a joint venture company, Fever Media, with two former BBC execs.

Fever Media will be led by David Mortimer, the pubcaster’s former creative head of factual entertainment, and Richard Hopkins, who was creative head of format entertainment.

It’s a significant step for Sony BMG, which looks keen to cash in on the reality TV boom.

Previously, the company has said its TV production was designed to exploit its artists and repertoire both in programming and as part of the soundtrack for that programming.

Mortimer’s and Hopkins’ production credits in the U.K. include reality TV shows “Strictly Come Dancing,” which was spun off into ABC’s highly successful “Dancing With the Stars,” and “Strictly Dance Fever.”

“We have been looking to deepen our interests in the global TV business, both in relation to the creation of programming and format ideas, and the development of production capacity,” said Clive Rich, senior VP of Sony BMG’s futures division. “Fever will be a perfect partner for this, as David and Richard have a proven track record at the highest levels, across a wide range of programming, with access to every senior broadcaster in the U.K.”

Hopkins said the chance to “take on the challenges of the independent world was too good to miss.”