BBC One announces new slate of dramas

BBC director of content Charlotte Moore announced a raft of new BBC One dramas at the Edinburgh International Television Festival including a new legal drama from the writer of Suffragette.

Abi Morgan’s The Split is set in London, the divorce capital of the world, and centres on the fast-paced circuit of female divorce lawyers through the eyes of three sisters. It marks one of two new commissions from Jane Featherstone’s production company, Sister Pictures.

Morgan, who penned historical drama Suffragette, said of the show: “As Robin Williams once said 'Divorce is expensive… like ripping your heart out through your wallet.’ The Split exposes the complex realities of high-end divorce and broken marriage through female divorce lawyers and sisters embattled and bound by their own troubled past.

"I am delighted to be working with the aptly named Sister Pictures, continuing the creative partnership Jane Featherstone and I built together on Tsunami, The Hour and River. I can’t think of a better home for it than with Charlotte Moore and Lucy Richer and am delighted to bring this lively and unseen world to the BBC.”

"An original and modern take on the crime genre"

Also heading up the tranche is a new series from Line of Duty and Bodies creator Jed Mercurio. From World Productions, Bodyguard is a contemporary thriller featuring the Royalty and Specialist Protection Branch (RaSP) of London's Metropolitan Police Service. It tells a fictional story following a team of RaSP officers whose duties involve protecting royals, politicians and diplomats.

Bodyguard will be exec produced by Mercurio alongside World’s Simon Heath and the BBC’s Stephen Wright. Moore commented: "Jed Mercurio has created an original and modern take on the crime genre for BBC One. In his own unique and clever way, the series takes us into the corridors of power in thrilling style - all seen through the eyes of the bodyguard."

Red Productions delivers to BBC

The prolific Red Productions is also working on a BBC One drama, Trust Me. The character-led piece goes into production in and around Edinburgh later this year and comes from writer Dan Sefton (Mr Selfridge, The Five). The four-part drama centres on a hard-working nurse, Cathy, who is forced due to desperate circumstances to steal her best friend’s identity and start a new life in Scotland as a senior doctor.

Red’s Nicola Shindler said of Trust Me: “Trust Me is a love story at its heart. It is about a woman’s desperation to start afresh and escape the pain and disappointment of her old life. Dan’s exceptionally realistic script is layered with complex characters and a gripping storyline that will keep viewers hooked.”

Mammoth Screen adapts book to screen

Ever-busy Mammoth Screen has been commissioned to make Noughts and Crosses, a small-screen adaptation of Malorie Blackman’s YA novel about first love in a dangerous, adrenalin-fuelled fictional dystopia. Levi David Adddai (Our Loved Boy) and Matthew Graham are adapting the book.

Addai said of the drama: "I'm honoured to be trusted with bringing Malorie Blackman's superb novel to a BBC One audience. It's a powerful story drawing on themes of hope, love and identity, set in a brilliantly conceived world that makes us think again about our own."


We will be updating all these new dramas on Production Intelligence over the coming months so subscribers should make sure they are following the projects to get email alerts as HoDs board and dates and locations are locked down.


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