Mark Robinson - Creative Director
Before starting Wise Owl Films, Mark worked at ITV Studios in Leeds and Newcastle for over 25 years, creating over 200 different series and prime-time specials for ITV, the BBC, Channel 4, Channel 5 and Sky, including May The Best House Win, Super Tiny Animals, David Jason: My Life On Screen, Last Laugh In Vegas and The Nation’s Favourite music documentary series, telling the stories behind the songs of icons such as ABBA and The Beatles.
Mark created Shiver in 2007 - ITV Studios’ first label – and has worked closely with many of Britain’s best-loved television stars including Peter Kay and Sir Trevor McDonald as well as with some of Britain’s biggest institutions and brands, from record companies including Sony, Universal, Warner Music to the casts of series like Coronation Street and Emmerdale, and the families and estates of comedy legends including Tommy Cooper, Les Dawson and Morecambe & Wise. As well as executive producing the majority of Wise Owl’s output, Mark oversaw a number of ITV’s celebrations of the life of the Queen, documentaries which aired in September 2022.
Lucy Smith - Development Executive, Formats & Features
From marijuana-smoking nuns to dogs saving Britain, Lucy’s development career has revolved around Fact Ent formats that raise the nation’s eyebrows. Prior to joining Wise Owl Films, she has thrived in teams at BBC Creative Label, betty, Firecracker Films and MultiStory Media, with credits including Gone to Pot (ITV), You Are What You Wear (BBC1), 10k Holiday Home (ITV) and The Big Flower Fight (Netflix). She was named a One to Watch at the Edinburgh TV Festival 2019. A passionate Northerner now finally back in her home county after a TV career in London exile, Lucy arrives at Wise Owl with a huge supply of Yorkshire Tea.
James Knight - Development Executive & Series Producer
With a background in science, extreme environment and history-based programming spanning over 15 years, James is an award-winning series producer who has worked for a host of broadcasters including Discovery, The History Channel, CBBC, ITV, Nat Geo and Channel Four.
He received two BAFTA nominations, for the CBBC series Absolute Genius: Monster Builds and The Dengineers, and his CV also includes international commissions such as The World’s Biggest Cave (Nat Geo), Hidden China (CICC) and Exodus Earth (Discovery Science).
James joins Wise Owl fresh from series producing the engineering format, Scrapyard Supercar, for Nat Geo.
Caly Brooks -Head of Development (Maternity Cover)
Carly’s career has covered a lot of ground, both in terms of location and subject matter. From Children’s TV in Scotland to Entertainment formats in London and Factual Entertainment out of Northern Ireland, there’s not a postcode or genre that can keep her at bay.
It’s this broad experience that has given rise to her genre-bending concepts and ability to find innovative ways to refresh the traditional.
Prior to joining Wise Owl Films, Carly was based in London, climbing the ranks developing dozens of formats in talented teams at the BBC, Thames Fremantle and latterly Tiger Aspect - where she developed, and series produced the BAFTA Scotland winning Armchair Detectives (BBC One).
She later went on to work with NI indies, Afro-Mic Productions and Alleycats Films – where she developed Big Money Munch (BET UK) and the Rose D'or nominated The Big Proud Party Agency (BBC Three).
A proper-Manc, while she looks after the development team at Wise Owl in Leeds, she has promised to keep Lucy’s supply of Yorkshire Tea topped up.
Kay Beaumont - Production Executive
Kay works as Production Executive at Lime Pictures looking after Wise Owl Films in Leeds as well as Lime’s Liverpool-based Press and Digital department.
Kay worked at ITV for 15 years where she production managed shows including I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here!, Saturday Night Takeaway, Loose Women, Judge Rinder & It'll be Alright on the Night.
Since then she worked as production executive at Shiver (ITV Studios) across a range of shows for C4, ITV, BBC & UKTV and also at Workerbee (Endemol) on commissions for Discovery, National Geographic, Quibi, Netflix, C4 & C5.
Charlotte Topliss - Production Manager
Charlotte has been working for production companies in the North of England since 2006 on a variety of reality, factual and entertainment programmes including The Valleys, Snog Marry Avoid?, Most Haunted and Coach Trip.
A University of Sunderland graduate now back in her native home city of Leeds Charlotte joined Wise Owl Films from Shiver’s Salford office where she worked on titles including Eat Shop Save, Ade In Britain, Manchester: 100 Days After The Attack, Real Stories with Ranvir Singh and ITV’s flagship current affairs programme Tonight.
Nathalie Mayer - Assistant Producer
Nathalie is an assistant producer working across development and production with a passion for innovative approaches to storytelling.
From developing formats to working on documentaries, she loves seeing programmes through from inception to production. Some of her recent credits include Yorkshire Firefighters, When Nirvana Came to Britain and digital series Box Fresh.
She is one of Edinburgh TV Festival's Ones to Watch 2022 and is keen to find fresh ways of communicating untold experiences, challenging stigma and expanding expectations of regional TV production.
Yuko Crawford - Production Co-Ordinator
Scarborough born and bred, Yuko graduated from the University of Leeds in 2020, prides herself on her Northern roots and even competitively represented her county at the Yorkshire Swimming County Championships when she was younger. She is passionate about making sure that there are opportunities in television for talented people in the North and strongly values the diversity this brings. In 2021 Yuko took part in Creative Access’ Mentoring Programme where she received six months of mentoring from experienced industry experts.
Rebecca Richardson - Production Secretary
Rebecca studied film and television production at the Northern Film School and Leeds Beckett University. After she graduated in 2018, she started working in scripted and drama productions, working her way up to 3rd Assistant Director. Rebecca then decided to make the switch to production management and began working for Wise Owl Films in June 2022. She loves planning, organising and working with people. In her spare time, she enjoys photography and shooting with her 35mm camera.
Christina Vassell - Development Researcher
Christina is a development researcher who is passionate about the arts, popular culture, social history, and specialist factual programmes. Before joining Wise Owl Films, she completed a degree in English and Media Studies at the University of Derby, before working across print and digital media in London, Berlin and Taiwan.
London-born Christina already has credits on Sky Arts shows and was on the Young Producer Scheme at the Royal Albert Hall. She now wants to develop tonally rich and entertaining programmes that inform and impact diverse audiences.
Kane Harland - Trainee Researcher
Kane is a trainee researcher on the development team, who joined Wise Owl after graduating from York St John University where he studied Music Production and Creative Business. He was then selected to be on the Channel 4 production training scheme and now hopes to bring his proud Northern roots (as well as his love of music and sport) to Wise Owl’s development process.
Kane was brought up in Whitby and still lives on Yorkshire’s east coast. However he has already ventured far beyond the area in terms of creativity, with experience producing and editing multiple podcasts and music projects, as well as audio editing for the Europe Film Festival winner Ekeko.