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ITV: Anna Friel heads up cast of new drama Marcella




Anna Friel has taken the lead role in  major new 8 part crime drama Marcella from ITV created by Scandinavian writer Hans Rosenfeldt (The Bridge and several highly successful novels).

The thrille will also star Downton Abbey’s Laura Carmichael, Nicholas Pinnock (Fortitude, Captain America), Ian Puleston-Davies (Coronation Street, Being Human), Nina Sosanya (W1A, Last Tango in Halifax), Ray Panthaki (named BAFTA breakthrough Brit 2014, Convenience), Jamie Bamber (Law & Order: UK, Battlestar Galactica), Sinead Cusack (Jekyll and Hyde, Eastern Promises), Patrick Baladi (The Office, Mistresses), and Harry Lloyd (Game of Thrones, The Theory of Everything).

Produced by Buccaneer Media and co-created by Hans Rosenfeldt and Nicola Larder (Sky’s development executive on The Tunnel and Dracula), Marcella is Hans Rosenfeldt’s first exclusively created drama for the UK audience following the global success of The Bridge, a Swedish/Danish co-production which achieved critical acclaim when it began broadcasting in the UK in 2014.

Set in contemporary London with a British Metropolitan Police Detective at its heart, Marcella is noir thriller told with Rosenfeldt’s unflinchingly multi layered Nordic style. Marcella’s 8 x 60’ episodes will lead the audience through a narrative maze where any character could be a witness, victim or potential suspect. Marcella will get involved in a serial murder case where the modus operandi of the killer bares a striking resemblance to an unsolved spate of killings from a decade ago.

Marcella is shocked to the core of her being when her husband Jason (Nicholas Pinnock) leaves her unexpectedly, confessing he no longer loves her.

Heartbroken, Marcella returns to the Met’s Murder Squad. Ten years ago Marcella gave up her fast-tracked police career to marry and devote her life to her family. With the abrupt end to her marriage and isolated from her 13 year old daughter and 10 year old son, Marcella throws herself into work to stop herself from falling apart.

Marcella wants back in on the serial killer case she first worked on in 2005. She’s got a hunch she wants to follow up on, a hunch she couldn’t follow through with due to falling pregnant with a second child. Has the killer re-appeared or is a copycat murderer responsible for these recent deaths? How will Marcella cope returning to duties when her own temperament is so fragile and vulnerable? Will throwing herself into her work provide the answers she’s seeking? Or lead her dangerously into territory she must evade at all cost?

Suspicious of her husband’s motives for leaving her, Marcella finds herself playing detective away from work, but will her findings lead her to further heartbreak?

Marcella will be executive produced by Rosenfeldt, Nicola Larder and Buccaneer Media’s founder Tony Wood who created the joint venture production company in partnership with global entertainment company, Cineflix Media. The director is Charles Martin (New Worlds, Skins, The Returned) and Andrew Woodhead (Fortitude, Spooks, Law & Order: UK) is producer. Second director is Jonathan Teplitzky, whose directing credits include Broadchurch and the movies Burning Man and The Railway Man. Henrik Georgsson (The Bridge, Wallander) will also direct.

Anna Friel said of her role: “I’m thrilled to be working on Hans Rosenfeldt’s first English drama. Scandinavian storytelling is hugely inspiring but we Brits usually have to settle for doing a remake, so to be working with Hans on an original piece for ITV is a true privilege. Marcella is a complex woman and a wonderful layered character. Hans’ marvellous scripts have drawn a fantastic cast and crew together. I can’t wait to begin.”

Filming will commence in London and surrounding areas from November 2015.



ITV, Kate Beckinsale to star in The Widow, a Harry and Jack Williams series




ITV Logo

ITV have announced that Kate Beckinsale will take the leading role in ITV and Amazon Prime Video Drama, The Widow, from acclaimed writers Harry and Jack Williams. The series will be produced in conjunction with Amazon Prime Video.

In The Widow Kate will play Georgia Wells who has her life turned upside-down with a phone-call in the middle of the night. Her husband of over 10 years, Will, has been reported dead after a plane crash in the Congolese jungle.

Three years later, with her old life now a thing of the past, Georgia learns something shocking. Something that will take her to Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, looking to uncover the truth about his disappearance.

Still haunted by the past, Georgia is grieving for the man she loved and the life they’ve lost, but she hasn’t given up hope.

The Widow has been commissioned for ITV by Head of Drama, Polly Hill, who said: “I’m delighted to announce Kate Beckinsale’s casting in The Widow. She is perfect for the role of Georgia in what is, as always, brilliant, compelling and surprising storytelling from Harry and Jack Williams. We’re very pleased to have secured the series which is an ITV original commission and co-production with Amazon Prime.”

On behalf of Amazon Prime Video, Brad Beale, Vice President, Worldwide TV Content Acquisition said: “We are thrilled to continue our existing relationship with Kate Beckinsale on the heels of her incredible performances in Amazon Studios’ critically acclaimed films.”

“Harry and Jack Williams have created a powerful story, which will be brought to life by one of the world’s most talented actresses, and we are excited to bring this thrilling series to Prime members around the world,” he added.

Commented Harry and Jack Williams: “Kate Beckinsale is a brilliantly talented actress and we’re thrilled she’s joining us on this journey – we couldn’t imagine anyone more perfect for the role. The Widow is our most ambitious and cinematic piece to date and we can’t wait to bring the dark heart of the Congolese jungle to the screen.”

The Widow will be produced by Eliza Mellor (Liar, The Living and the Dead, Poldark, Death Comes to Pemberley) and will be directed by lead director Sam Donovan (Humans, Liar, Utopia) and Olly Blackburn (Donkey Punch, Glue) who is also directing four episodes of the series. Jack and Harry Williams will executive produce the drama.

The series will go into production in January 2018 in South Africa, Wales and Rotterdam.

The Widow will premiere on ITV before airing as an Amazon Prime Original in the US. The series will be available exclusively on Amazon Prime Video in more than 200 countries and territories for members to watch via the Prime Video app for popular smart TVs, Fire TV, Fire Tablets and Android and iOS phones and tablets.

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Channel 9, Married At First Sight 2018 New Series Premieres 29 Jan




What started as something of a social experiment but is now more or less straight reality (but still calling itself a social experiment), Married At First Sight will premiere it’s new series on Channel 9 on Monday January 29 at 7.30pm.

Once again the team – relationship expert John Aiken, neuropsychotherapist Dr Trisha Stratford, and dating and relationship expert Mel Schilling – aim to put relationships to the test in a unique experiment designed to determine if science can predict true love in couples who will get married at first sight.

The experts will undertake the mammoth task of pairing 20 brave singles to create their perfect match as 10 brides and 10 grooms undergo the most intense experiment yet.

The experts will match all our couples on the basis of extensive psychological and neurological testing and profiling.

Married At First Sight 2018 Davina

Each couple meet for the first time on their wedding day, and from the moment they exchange vows their relationships are thrust under a microscope as they experience the highs and lows of marriage at full speed – alongside other couples riding the same rollercoaster.

Once again, the couples will reside under the same roof as relationships are tested like never before.

They’ll get the chance to compare their experiences at often explosive dinner parties – and put their relationships to the test at the most confronting commitment ceremonies we’ve ever seen.

But while some couples will struggle with all the complexities an intense relationship experiment brings, others will find true joy as their fairytale blossoms from first glance.

10 brides. 10 grooms. 10 weddings. Who will find true lasting love?

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Netflix, German Supernatural drama Dark given Second Season




Dark Netflix

Netflix has renewed its first German original production, DARK, for a second season. The acclaimed drama created by Baran bo Odar and Jantje Friese has resonated with audiences in Germany and around the world, including the U.S., Brazil, Italy, Turkey, Spain and France among other countries. DARK, a family saga with a supernatural twist, is now one of the most-watched entirely non-English shows on Netflix, a German series that transcends borders to connect with audiences in every country.

Kelly Luegenbiehl, Vice President of International Originals for Netflix, said: “When we first heard about DARK, we realized very early on that we hadn’t seen anything like this show before — in Germany or anywhere else in the world. DARK is a testament that great storytelling transcends geography. We’re excited that our members around the globe are captivated by the mysterious world of Winden, and will now be able to continue to see how the story unfolds.”

Showrunners Baran bo Odar and Jantje Friese about the audience reception and the renewal of season two added: “We are overwhelmed by the response to DARK and are thrilled that our story has been a success with a global audience. Viewers have been captivated by the secrets of our protagonists and have taken delight in unravelling the various puzzles that the story presents. To know that we will now embark on our next journey is, for us showrunners, a dream come true. And our fans can be sure that we have plenty of surprises in store for the second season of DARK.”

Producer Quirin Berg concludes: “Jantje Friese, Baran Bo Odar, our wonderful actors and our fantastic team have put an incredible amount of energy into making DARK a unique and gripping series. We thank all of those who have accompanied us on this path. And we thank Netflix for their trust and for the excellent cooperation. We are extremely happy that DARK has by now received such an overwhelming response, both in Germany and around the world, and we are particularly thrilled about the quick decision by Netflix to take it into a second season. We can hardly wait to continue telling the story!”

DARK is now streaming on Netflix, it is set in a German town in present day where the disappearance of two young children exposes the double lives and fractured relationships among four families. In ten, hour-long episodes, the story takes on a supernatural twist that ties back to the same town in 1986.

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