Channel 4, in association with M&S, has commissioned Manchester-based Salamanda Media to make New Model Agency.

The ob-doc series follows a cast of models represented by inclusive model agency Zebedee Talent.

Over three episodes, the series centres on the cast as they work to make their mark in the industry and compete at castings to land lucrative campaigns with brands such as Fred Perry and Tommy Hilfiger.

New Model Agency goes behind the scenes at Zebedee’s Sheffield hub as the team help drive an “inclusion revolution” by chasing high-end brands for better representation and fight to get their models on the catwalk at London Fashion Week.

Zebedee Talent is the leading agency for Disabled, Visibly Different, Non-Binary and Trans models, “committed to changing the way disability, visible difference and gender identity are represented in fashion and the wider media.”

Jayne Stanger, commissioning editor for Channel 4, said: “It’s brilliant to be working with M&S and Salamanda Media on this brilliant new series to give viewers incredible insight into the diverse young talent making waves in the fashion industry and revolutionising it in the process. New Model Agency is an exhilarating window into the world of the models on the catwalk and those behind-the-scenes fighting for real representation.”

Sally Evans and Amanda De Freitas, Salamanda Media’s Creative Directors, said: “We’re so excited to be working with M&S, Zebedee Talent and their amazing cast of models as they continue to make waves, break boundaries and smash stereotypes in the world of fashion! And we’re delighted this new series, which offers a fantastically fresh and forward-facing look at the world of modelling, has found it’s perfect home on Channel 4.”

Anna Braithwaite, Clothing & Home Marketing Director at M&S, said: “Our latest Bra Fit campaign features an amazing cast of women which reflect and celebrate the diverse size, age, and life stages of the women who shop with us. We’re proud to have a long-standing relationship with Zebedee who are as passionate as us about redefining the perception of beauty, disability and representation in fashion. While there’s more to do, New Model Agency gives viewers an insight into how we’re moving towards a more representative casting approach, and we can’t wait to share the Bra Fit campaign with the nation.”

Ben Chadd, Chief Client Officer, Mindshare UK said: “New Model Agency perfectly aligns with M&S as a brand given their style credentials and following one of their real-life campaign castings and shoots within the ob-doc itself further demonstrates their continued focus on diversity and inclusion. The series is equally a perfect fit for Channel 4 and together it’s another great example of the value longform branded entertainment can deliver to both brands and viewers.”

New Model Agency is a 3×60’ series made by Salamanda Media. It was commissioned for Channel 4 by Jayne Stanger, commissioning editor, Daytime and Features, with Jo Street, Head of Daytime and Features, in collaboration with Katherine Marlow, Channel 4’s Senior Branded Entertainment Lead, Commercial Propositions. The executive producers for Salamanda Media are Amanda De Freitas and Sally Evans.

Salamanda Media’s recent credits include ‘Abbey Clancy: Celebrity Homes’ for ITVBe and ITVX, celebrity DNA guessing game format ‘Fame In the Family’ for Channel 4, and ‘Return to Uist’ for the BBC.

M&S used Mindshare, which holds M&S’ media account, to advise on the series partnership.

Jon Creamer

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