Speaker Duane Jones
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I’m passionate about ideas and content that really makes a difference to youth audiences, be it through music, sport, digital, radio, social or TV, it’s an audience I have a deep understanding of and it’s been my obsession for a long time.”
Broadcaster, TV executive, artist manager and music publisher. With more than 70 hours of TV commissioned globally, over 2 billion streams across DSP platforms and 2 million plus in record sales, Duane Jones is a creative trailblazer.
Having played an instrumental role in the birth and progression of BBC Radio 1Xtra as one half of Ace & Vis, with whom he beat the likes of Nick Ferrari, Chris Moyles and Zane Lowe to win the Sony Gold Award for Radio Show of the Year. Duane solidified his position as a successful mainstream broadcaster on BBC Radio 1, MTV and BBC 5Live and continued presenting with the BBC for 11 years.
After leaving the BBC, Duane founded Renowned Group in 2013 with Wretch 32. The aim was to set up a company that would manage and publish an array of British talent, with clients such as Jacob Banks, KZ, Knox Brown and of course Wretch 32.
By the end of 2013, Duane set up the last piece of the Renowned Group property, founding independent production company Renowned Films with two talented producer directors Tim Withers and Max Welch, of which he is Global President. With its innovative approach to content development and broadcast, Renowned Films soon bagged its first commission for Trace Sports on Sky, a 12 part series called Winners Circle that was shown in 66 territories featuring sportspeople and athletes across Europe. Soon after came Football Freestyle for London Live, which remains the channel’s most viewed original commission to date. This was the start of the rise of Renowned Films as a sought after independent production company.
In 2015, the indie caught the attention of David Abraham the Chief Executive of Channel 4, and Jay Hunt, the channel’s Chief Creative Officer. Channel 4 took on an equity stake in Renowned Films. Shortly after, a commission from ITV came in the form of Pranksterz, a prank show playing on cultural stereotypes. This was followed by The Women Who Kill Lions about female hunting and Top Dad with Ashley Walters, both for Channel 4. Most recently this summer was NYPD Biggest Gang in New York an investigative piece about police brutality for both BBC Three and BBC Two, as well as Hate And Pride Of Orlando about the Orlando gay club shootings for BBC Three.
As Renowned Films established itself as a key producer of noisy, cut-through, factual and factual entertainment features, documentaries and branded content for the BBC, Channel 4, ITV and MTV it caught the attention of US-based Critical Content, who then bought Channel 4’s stake in the company.
Since partnering with Critical, there’s been an exciting slate of commissions including Peng Life (Ch4) and Generation Grime (Sky Arts), Backyard Envy (Bravo), The Modern Game (OTRO) Rated Awards (Ch4), What’s Changed (BBC3) and Who We Be (Spotify), Copwatch America (BET), branded content series Side Hustles for Budweiser on DAZN and premiering this month, Youtube Originals documentary How to Be Anne-Marie. After receiving Edinburgh TV Festival’s Production Company Of The Year award, and with more exciting commissions lined up for this 202 - Duane’s mission to make edgy, diverse and compelling content is well underway
As well as his TV endeavours, Duane remains an integral part of the UK music scene, teaming up with GRM’s Posty to co-found Not For The Radio, one of the biggest online interview platforms in the UK featuring exclusive sit downs with stars such as Stormzy, Bugzy Malone and Giggs.
Speaking on: Medium and the Message: How Different Platforms Tackle Topical Content