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Shine execs setup indie following end of Merlin

Shine TV execs Johnny Capps and Julian Murphy are leaving the Lis Murdoch-owned producer to start their own production company. This comes as Merlin, the drama that they created, is set to end its run after its forthcoming fifth season.

The drama series, which airs on BBC One, will conclude with its two-part finale airing this Christmas.

Capps and Murphy, who co-created the series and exec produce it, are to leave Shine by the end of the year, where they are currently creative directors, and start their own production company. The pair have also produced series including Channel 4’s Sugar Rush and ITV’s Demons.

Capps and Julian Murphy said: “It has been a wonderful five years with Merlin and ten overall with Shine, but we have always had the ambition to branch out ourselves at some point and now feels the time to take that leap. We do so with great memories, respect and best wishes for our Shine colleagues and in the knowledge that if there were to be any subsequent adventures, the world of Camelot is in safe hands.”

Despite this, Shine Group and FremantleMedia Enterprises, which distributes the whimsical drama internationally, are exploring the possibility of launching Merlin spin-offs based on characters within the Camelot universe.

“We’re excited about possible spin-off opportunities inspired by the brilliant reimagining of Camelot and of course we will continue to support Merlin globally until it reaches its incredibly exciting finale in all territories,” added FremantleMedia Enterprises global chief executive David Ellender.