Disney+ greenlights three UK dramas
Disney+ has commissioned three UK scripted dramas as part of its drive to source and produce original productions in Europe. These scripted projects increase the European Disney+ productions to 14, as part of the company’s ambition to create 50 productions in Europe by 2024.
The Ballad of Renegade Nell is a Disney-branded adventure series set in the 18th century, written Sally Wainwright and produced by Lookout Point.
When she's framed for murder, Nell Jackson is forced into a life of highway robbery, along with her two orphaned sisters Roxanne and George. The series is executive produced by Wainwright, Faith Penhale and Will Johnston.
Wainwright said: “I can’t wait to bring swashbuckling highwaywoman Nell Jackson to the screen. Nell’s a ball of irreverent, blustering energy, fighting against the privileged gatekeepers of English society in 1705, battling to contain mysterious forces within her and her enemies as she goes on the run with her two sisters.
“It’s a thrill once again to work with Faith Penhale and the super-talented team at Lookout Point. I’m so excited to partner with Disney+ for this series, with their supportive approach and magnificent commitment to bringing this three-hundred-year-old story to the biggest possible global audience.”
Star Original commission Culprits is a darkly comic heist series from creator/director J Blakeson. Culprits follows what happens after a heist, when the crew have gone their separate ways, but are being targeted by a killer one-by-one. Stephen Garrett executive produces for Character 7; Morenike Williams produces.
Garrett remarked: “J and I started working on the smart, twisty thriller that is Culprits a couple of years ago. We are immensely proud that Disney+ have decided to make it one of their platform-defining shows. The additional thrill for me is that I’m working with a writer-director at the very top of his game.”
Extraordinary, a Star Original comedy series from new writer Emma Moran, follows Jen, a young, self-aware woman who lives in a world where everyone has a superpower… except her. From Sid Gentle Films, this is a fresh, innovative comedy about being young and finding your feet in a confusing world, when all you’ll ever be is ‘ordinary’. Extraordinary is executive produced by Sally Woodward Gentle, Lee Morris and Charles Dawson.
Woodward Gentle commented: “Emma Moran IS Extraordinary. An extraordinary new writer with a brilliantly distinctive and ingenious voice. This genre curve-ball will chime with the crises everyone carries with them through their neuroses fuelled lives. We love it and are delighted that Liam and the team at Disney+ are behind us.”
Also on The Knowledge
A new, live-action feature adaptation based on the famous illustrations by the late Norman Thelwell is in pre-production at Blenheim Films readying to shoot in North Wales later this year.
Channel 4’s drama Before We Die, starring Lesley Sharp, filmed in various locations in and around Bristol last year.
ITV has greenlit a drama based on the real-life events surrounding one of Britain’s greatest miscarriages of justice.
Production is due to get underway in London this week on Lead Heads, starring Rupert Everett, Derek Jacobi and Tom Felton.
Following the recent news that Hackman Capital Partners (HCP) has invested in building Eastbrook Studios, the global real estate and operating company has now confirmed it is funding a second filming facility, also in the borough of Barking and Dagenham.
Filming gets underway this week on BBC One’s You Don’t Know Me, a four-part drama adapted from the book by barrister and novelist Imran Mahmood.