Lionsgate to co-produce Paris Hilton’s New Best Friend

Mumbai: ITV2 and the UK will be playing host to Paris Hilton, in the new and exclusive series co-produced by Lionsgate, ITV Productions and Ish Entertainment called Paris Hilton’s New Best Friend.

Paris Hilton is jetting into the UK with one mission—to find herself a British best friend! In the deal brokered by Lionsgate international television programming and sales executive vice president Craig Cegielski, ITV2 controller Zai Bennett and ITV director of acquisitions Jay Kandola, ITV2 will create an original British version of Paris Hilton’s My New BFF, which will air on MTV in the US. ITV2 has also licensed the US version of the series for broadcast in the UK.

Paris Hilton’s New Best Friend will follow Miss Hilton as she flies to the UK for an intensive search for a new friend she can depend on. Providing viewers with a candid insight into her manic world, they will also be privy to the true girl behind the media image through unprecedented exclusive access.

"Everyone knows I love LA," says Hilton, "but London, watch out – I’m coming to town and bringing my fast-paced life with me. I am in the UK all the time, but of course, I cannot bring all my friends, so I have decided to look for a new BFF across the pond. I need a best friend who is hot, who can keep up with me, and most of all, who is real and will not be a backstabber. I’m not leaving London until I find that amazing girl or guy who can meet the challenges of being my British bestie!"

The ambitious wannabes will be sharing a house and will gradually be eliminated by Hilton until one of them will be inaugurated as Paris Hilton’s New Best Friend. "Working with ITV2 through the acquisition of the US series and simultaneously working with them on the commission of the UK version has been remarkable," said Cegielski. "It speaks to the incredible international star power of Paris Hilton that we can engage a broadcaster such as ITV2 in the commission of this format prior to the launch of the original programme."

Bennett commented, "Hilton is a worldwide phenomenon and ITV2 is the perfect channel for her to make her first ever UK show. Prospective new best friends should form an orderly queue"

Hilton’s initial quest for her true BFF began when Ish Entertainment sold Paris Hilton’s My New BFF to MTV US. For the series, 20 potential best friends moved to Los Angeles to live in a house and compete in tests of loyalty, endurance and girl politics to prove that they have what it takes to be Paris Hilton’s new best friend. The 10 episode series is scheduled to air in US on MTV in Q4, 2008.

Ish Entertainment’s Michael Hirschorn and Stella Stolper are Co-Creators and Executive Producers along with Paris Hilton and her manager, Jason Moore. They have collaborated with ITV Productions to fulfill the commission from ITV2. Rachel Ashdown is the Executive Producer for ITV Productions and Jake Attwell is the Series Editor for ITV Productions.

"This is an innovative way to take an exciting US format and bring it to world-wide audiences," says Hirschorn. "Paris is an international star, probably the best known personality in the world. For her to do this show in the UK is a huge coup."

"We’re thrilled to be working with Paris again," adds Stolper. "This has been an amazing relationship. I love her energy, her wit, and her drive to be the best in everything she does."