Reality producer Mike Fleiss inks big new deal with Warner Bros.
By Christopher Rocchio, 12/13/2008
Reality producer Mike Fleiss has apparently decided he's found a home with Warner Bros.
The Bachelor creator has inked an exclusive deal with Warner Bros. Television and its Warner Horizon TV branch, Daily Varietyreported Thursday. Fleiss has worked with Warner Bros. since 2000.
The "eight-figure" deal, which includes all development and production from Fleiss and his Next Entertainment production company, makes Fleiss one of the highest-paid reality television producers, Variety reported.
"We've had so much success together, it seemed like the right thing to do," Fleiss told Variety. "They expect me to keep selling shows, and that's what we've been doing for eight years. Despite the hard times in our business, you know the kind of shows we produce will continue to be produced."
Fleiss is currently in different production stages on eight other projects with various networks, according to Variety.
Among them are ABC's The Bachelor -- the thirteenth season of which premieres next month -- and The Bachelorette's fifth season, which is also "in the works" as mideseason programming, according to Variety.
At CBS, Fleiss is producing There Goes the Neighborhood, a new reality competition series that pits families against their neighbors for a large prize.
He is also working with RDF USA to produce The CW's Hitched or Ditched, a reality series that follows couples as they go through the steps of planning their wedding before deciding whether or not to exchange nuptials for real.
In addition, Fleiss is producing The Cougar, an Age of Love-like reality series TV Land ordered last May that will follow a group of young men vying for the heart of an older, more mature woman. TV Land also plans to air the fifth season of Fleiss' High School Reunion next year.
Fleiss is also reportedly developing a reality series for E! starring former The Bachelor: London Calling winner Shayne Lamas, and a reality project for Oxygen starring boxer "Sugar" Shane Mosley and his wife Jin.
"Reality is what I do," Fleiss told Variety. "I'm a TV creature at heart, and I'm fired up to make more original TV."
Warner Bros. TV president Peter Roth -- who is also Fleiss' neighbor -- gushed about the producer's talent when it comes to reality programming.
"[He's] one of the most accomplished producers of reality programming in the history of the industry," Roth told Variety.
Despite his love for reality, Fleiss told Variety he also has his sights set on producing some scripted programming.
"In working in all the movies we've made, I've gotten to know some of the writers community," said Fleiss, who has produced several films, including Poseidon, Hostel and the 2003 remake of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.
"The next logical step would be to do some scripted shows."