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Dan Cutforth

Founding Partner

Magical Elves

Dan Cutforth was born and raised in England. He started his career at the BBC in 1990 as a researcher in the quaintly-named “Light Entertainment” department. He moved to independent production company Planet 24 to join the team that started up The Big Breakfast, an anarchic and influential morning show. In the mid-‘90s, Cutforth moved to New York to head up U.S. operations for Planet 24. While working there, he helped develop Survivor and produced The Keenan Ivory Wayans Show. After a six month sojourn in the UK to re-launch and re-brand The Big Breakfast,Cutforth returned to the U.S. to produce two seasons of the prime time series Whose Line is it Anyway? before joining forces with Jane Lipsitz to create Bands on the Run for VH1.

In 2001, Cutforth and Lipsitz founded Magical Elves and since then have been nominated for numerous Emmys, culminating in a win in 2010 for Outstanding Reality Competition for Top Chef. In 2008, they received a Peabody Award for Project Runway, the first reality show to be honored by the organization. Project Runway is one of four Magical Elves shows named by Entertainment Weekly in their list of the “20 Best Reality Shows of All Time” along with Top Chef, Bands on the Run and Project Greenlight.

February 2011 saw the Magical Elves first major motion picture release, Justin Bieber: Never Say Never. The film received critical acclaim and is currently the 3rd highest grossing documentary of all time. They followed the film up in 2012 with their directorial debut Katy Perry: Part of Me. Other notable credits include Fashion Star, Braxton Family Values, Around the World in 80 Plates, Gallery Girls, Work of Art, Top Chef Masters, Parental Discretion, Last Comic Standing and Treasure Hunters; and Dance on Sunset.

Speaking at: Monsters of Factual; Digital Factual

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