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Erin White prepares TV crime drama for Essential Media and French co-producer

Erin White (Photo credit: Vicki Jones).

Essential Media Group (Emg) is in advanced development on a cold case murder mystery created by writer-director Erin White – Emg’s first drama since the sale of its scripted division to Fremantle.

Set in Australia in 1992 and the present, the eight-part drama entitled Aftermath will be a co-production between Emg and French studio Federation Entertainment.

The show is being pitched to international networks and platforms at C21’s Content London this week with the aim of going into production next year, produced by Emg’s VP of scripted Michelle Hardy.

The project was developed by White and Hardy’s production company Hardy White Pictures, which has a development deal with Essential, under a Screen Australia Gender Matters grant.

The plot follows two estranged high-school best friends as they reunite to pursue the truth surrounding the murder of their art teacher 28 years earlier.

White conceived the idea two years ago,
See full article at IF.com.au »

Ronny Chieng to Host International Emmys, Conleth Hill to Present Founders Award to David Benioff and D.B. Weiss

  • Variety
Ronny Chieng to Host International Emmys, Conleth Hill to Present Founders Award to David Benioff and D.B. Weiss
Comedian and actor Ronny Chieng will host the 47th International Emmy Awards Gala in New York later this month.

Conleth Hill, known for playing Lord Varys in “Game of Thrones,” will be on hand to give the Founders Award to David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, the creators of the hit HBO series, at the Nov. 25 ceremony at the New York Hilton.

Chieng, a correspondent on “The Daily Show With Trevor Noah” and star of “Crazy Rich Asians,” has notched sold-out standup tours, and co-wrote and starred in his own television comedy series, “Ronny Chieng: International Student,” which aired on ABC Australia, the BBC, Comedy Central Asia and Comedy Central in the U.S. His Netflix comedy special drops in December.

Businesswoman, philanthropist, author and former model Iman will present the Directorate Award to CNN chief international anchor Christiane Amanpour. Amanpour was one of Variety’s Power of Women honorees earlier this year.
See full article at Variety »

Film News Roundup: Arthouse Specialist Kino Lorber Launches Digital Platform

  • Variety
Film News Roundup: Arthouse Specialist Kino Lorber Launches Digital Platform
In today’s film news roundup, Kino Lorber has started a VOD platform, Tony Todd is starring in a horror-comedy, the Red Nation International Film Festival sets its lineup and ballet dancer Kirsten Bloom Allen starts a production company. VOD Distribution Arthouse distribution specialist Kino Lorber is launching VOD platform Kino Now with more than 600 new releases, classics and international films. Kino Now, announced Monday, will offer exclusive early access to new theatrical releases, festival hits and exclusive titles not available on other streaming platforms or not yet available on home video.

The platform will also include special “bundle” offerings of selected hard-to-find titles as well as collections from renowned filmmakers including international TV series such as “Deutschland 83” and “Bad Banks”; documentary series including Joseph Campbell’s “The Power of Myth”; auteur collections built around Jean-Luc Godard, Lina Wertmüller and Fritz Lang; and pioneers of cinema restorations of the
See full article at Variety »

Art House Distributor Kino Lorber Launches Film & TV VOD Platform Kino Now

  • Deadline
Exclusive: U.S. art house distributor Kino Lorber is launching film and TV VOD streaming platform Kino Now, we can reveal. The service, which includes options to rent and buy, currently hosts 600 titles from the company’s catalog and includes early access to new releases. The number of titles is set to double by the end of the year.

Kino Lorber, which will unveil the platform at a stateside event this evening, tells us the service will be annually refreshed with more than 50 new theatrical releases from Kino Lorber’s first-run and repertory divisions and more than 500 yearly additional titles as “festival direct” exclusives and indie art house digital premieres.

Movies will be generally available around 30-90 days after their theatrical release but some will also get day-and-date releases. Most titles will be $9.99 or less. New releases and certain films that are considered premium will be $14.99 or $19.99 if they are day-and-date releases.
See full article at Deadline »

German Regional Film Fund Boss Ousted Over Meeting With Far-Right Party Leader

  • Variety
The German regional funder HessenFilm und Medien has fired its managing director, Hans Joachim Mendig, following an industry backlash over a meeting he had with a leader of the far-right political party Alternative for Germany (AfD).

Mendig met with Joerg Meuthen, AfD leader and member of the European Parliament, and PR consultant Moritz Hunzinger in a Frankfurt restaurant in July. Meuthen posted a photo of the meeting on Instagram, writing: “Very lively and constructive political exchange of ideas today in Frankfurt” with Hunzinger and Mendig.

It wasn’t until the magazine Journal Frankfurt published an article about the meeting earlier this month that industry outrage and demands for Mendig’s resignation erupted. In addition to the party’s anti-immigrant views, one of AfD’s leaders, Marc Jongen, has been extremely critical of German film funding and has called for the entire system to be “ideologically cleansed” and reevaluated.

Mendig maintained
See full article at Variety »

Germany’s HessenFilm fund fires CEO after meeting with far-right politician sparks outrage (exclusive)

Filmmakers Dominik Graf, Emily Atef, Sol Bondy among many who signed petition calling for executive to resign.

Frankfurt-based regional film fund HessenFilm has fired CEO Hans Joachim Mendig over a controversial meeting pictured in an Instagram post in which the businessman is seen sitting down with far-right politician Jörg Meuthen.

The fund’s supervisory board voted unanimously at an extraordinary meeting on Tuesday (24) to terminate Mendig’s employment with immediate effect.

The decision came after growing calls from the German film community for Mendig to step down after a local Frankfurt newspaper reported on the Instagram post dated July 24 by Meuthen,
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Radhika Apte, Netflix India's ‘Sacred Games’ nominated for International Emmy Awards

Awards While Radhika Apte is nominated for Best Performance By An Actress for 'Lust Stories', the anthology is also competing in the TV Movie/Miniseries category.Tnm StaffThe International Emmy Awards announced its nominees on Thursday and there’s some great news for Indian entertainment as well, with a total of four nominations, including one for Best Performance By An Actress. Netflix India’s original Sacred Games, which recently released its second season has received an International Emmy nomination for Season 1 in the category of Drama Series. Lust Stories, another Netflix miniseries, got a nomination in the TV movie/miniseries category; and for her work in the same, Radhika Apte has been nominated for the Best Performance By An Actress. Amazon Prime’s The Remix-India has been nominated for the International Emmy for Non-Scripted Entertainment. Sacred Games directors Anurag Kashyap, Neeraj Ghaywan and Vikramaditya Motwane, The Remix host
See full article at The News Minute »

AMC & BBC Co-Pro ‘McMafia’ & Netflix’s Indian Drama ‘Sacred Games’ Lead International Emmy Nominations

  • Deadline
AMC and BBC co-pro McMafia is going head to head with Netflix’s Indian drama Sacred Games for an International Emmy.

The nominations for the 2019 International Emmy Awards were unveiled today by the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences with 44 Nominees across 11 categories and 21 countries. The winners will be announced at a ceremony on November 25 2019 at the Hilton New York Hotel.

James Norton-fronted McMafia and Sacred Games are competing with Fox’s Brazilian drama One Against All and German thriller Bad Banks in the drama category.

Other notable nominees include Jenna Coleman in BBC drama The Cry and Christopher Eccleston in BBC’s Come Home.

In addition to the main awards, the Academy will present special awards to Christiane Amanpour, Chief International Anchor for CNN and host of PBS’ nightly global affairs show Amanpour and to Game of Thrones’ creators and showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss.

“The diversity,
See full article at Deadline »

International Emmys: 'McMafia,' 'Bad Banks' Among Best Drama Nominees

Shows from Brazil and the U.K. lead the pack for this year's International Emmy Awards, with the BBC's gangster drama McMafia and Fox Networks Group's Brazilian crime series One Against All among the nominees for the top honor of best drama series. The German financial thriller Bad Banks and Sacred Games, an Indian series from Netflix set in the Mumbai underworld, are also nominated.

Another Netflix original, the Brazilian show The Last Hangover, is among the best comedy nominees, together with Singaporean series Fam!, Israel's Checkout! and the second season of the Canadian comedy Workin' Moms.

Anglo actors are typically the ones ...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter »

German producers call for HessenFilm fund CEO to resign over meeting with far-right politician (exclusive)

“As long as he’s running the fund I will not ever apply to them,” said one producer.

Hans Joachim Mendig, the CEO of Frankfurt-based regional film fund HessenFilm, has come under fire after a photograph emerged of him meeting with Germany’s far-right Alternative for Germany (Afd) political party.

An Instagram post from Jörg Meuthen, the Afd’s co-leader and a member of the European Parliament, depicting a meeting with Mendig and controversial public relations executive Moritz Hunzinger, was picked up on by executives in the German industry and shared widely on social channels.

The picture was accompanied by
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Blockchain Company Breaker Nabs Rights to ‘Bad Banks’

  • Variety
Blockchain Company Breaker Nabs Rights to ‘Bad Banks’
Breaker, the blockchain-enabled entertainment platform, is getting into the television game. The company has added six-part miniseries “Bad Banks” to its library of film and music titles. The series is directed by Christian Schwochow, who previously oversaw episodes of “The Crown” and backed by Kino Lorber. It aired in Germany and in the U.S. on Hulu.

Breaker will offer the first “Bad Banks” episode for free to Us audiences. The show follows Jana Liekam (Paula Beer), an up-and-coming investment banker in Luxembourg who loses her job when her conniving boss plots to get her axed. She leaves for a different job only to find that she’s still being manipulated.

“’Bad Banks’ is just the type of episodic content we are proud to offer on Breaker,” said Breaker’s Co-founder and President of Entertainment Kim Jackson. “We greatly admire Kino Lorber’s impeccable taste.”

“’Bad Banks’ is your rare
See full article at Variety »

Picture Perfect Federation, Anonymous Content Team on ‘Ramses’ Series (Exclusive)

  • Variety
Picture Perfect Federation, Anonymous Content Team on ‘Ramses’ Series (Exclusive)
Picture Perfect Federation, the company recently created by Patrick Wachsberger and Pascal Breton, is teaming up with Anonymous Content to produce a premium TV show based on Christian Jacq’s “Ramses,” an epic saga of the formidable Ancient Egyptian king and conqueror.

Anonymous Content and Picture Perfect Federation have jointly acquired rights to Jacq’s five international bestselling books following the story of Pharaoh Ramses II, who reigned for 67 years from 1279-1212 B.C. Under the pact, Federation Entertainment and Anonymous Content will hold worldwide distribution rights to the series.

It’s the second series announced by Picture Perfect Federation, a joint venture between Wachsberger’s Picture Perfect Entertainment and Breton’s Federation Entertainment. The banner announced last week that it was developing “Sisi,” a period series about Empress Elisabeth of Austria.

“In an era of such great mythological works as ‘Game of Thrones’ and ‘Lord of the Rings,’ we
See full article at Variety »

ZDFneo Joins Beta Film, Neuesuper on Sci-Fi Series ‘Children of Mars’ (Exclusive)

  • Variety
German public broadcaster ZDFneo has boarded Neuesuper and Beta Film’s upcoming high-end science fiction series “Children of Mars.”

A low-fi near-future series, “Children of Mars” kicks off with an eccentric billionaire who organizes and funds a one-way trip to the red planet for a crew of 12 highly trained astronauts and himself, with the objective of starting a colony. The crew’s colorful pasts will inspire drama on the journey and frame larger questions about humanity’s place in the solar system.

2016 Variety Piazza Grande Award nominee Christian Schwochow is set to direct the six-part series which is already in development. Production is spearheaded by Neuesuper producer Simon Amberger along with Korbinian Dufter and Rafarl Parente. Beta Film lead in setting up financing and will handle international sales for the series.

“’Children of Mars’ is not just a sci-fi series, but a universal story about human nature, set where humans may live one day,
See full article at Variety »

Netflix Moves Into German Original Films With Three New Projects (Exclusive)

  • Variety
Netflix is making its first foray into German original films, unveiling a slate of three projects that it will produce with local film and TV powerhouses Ufa, X Filme and Zdf.

In the lineup are “Betongold” (“Concrete Gold”), a fast-paced satire about the world of real estate from Ufa Fiction; “Isi & Ossi,” a young-adult romcom from X Filme Creative Pool; and “Freaks,” a drama about a working-class mom with supernatural powers, from Zdf and Lüthje Schneider Hörl Film. The movies are set to start production this spring and will be released globally on Netflix from 2020.

The feature projects follow Netflix’s strong commitment to series in Germany, where it is currently producing a slew of shows, including supernatural hit “Dark” and gritty crime drama “Dogs of Berlin.”

“Concrete Gold,” written and directed by Cüneyt Kaya, follows three young real-estate grifters in Berlin, played by David Kross (“The Keeper”), Frederick Lau (“The Captain”) and Janina Uhse,
See full article at Variety »

Patrick Wachsberger, France’s Federation Entertainment launch TV Jv

Indie veteran will continue to develop film projects through his Picture Perfect.

Indie sales veteran and former Lionsgate film co-chairman Patrick Wachsberger is getting into television, forming a Los Angeles-based joint venture with France’s Federation Entertainment to develop and produce premium TV series for the Us and international co-production.

Wachsberger will work on the joint venture, labeled Picture Perfect Federation and expected to focus mainly on English-language projects, with Ashley Stern, head of Us television for Paris-based Federation, best known as producer of French-language Netflix drama series Marseille.

Wachsberger is reportedly in the process of optioning a series of
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Beta Film, Neuesuper Team on English-Language Drama ‘Children of Mars’

  • Variety
Germany’s Beta Film is set to partner with German production company Neuesuper on new English-language sci-fi drama “Children of Mars,” Beta announced Tuesday at Mipcom in Cannes. The eight-hour series, which will be directed by Christian Schwochow, follows 13 astronauts on a one-way journey to Mars. It marks Neuesuper’s first venture into English-language drama.

Set in a near future, “Children of Mars” sees an eccentric tycoon set up a one-way mission for the astronauts, including himself, to colonize the Red Planet. But none of the crew members can escape his or her past.

Writer and producer Simon Amberger described “Children of Mars” as a “human story set within truly unhuman conditions” that will ultimately ask the question of “whether we can take humanity with us when we leave our home planet.”

“The colonization of Mars will become part of our reality sooner than we might think,” said Amberger. “But
See full article at Variety »

Federation Joins Forces with ‘Desperate Parents’ Producer Elephant

  • Variety
Federation, Pascal Breton’s Paris-based company which has just raised $18.4 million to expand its footprint, has signed a joint distribution agreement with leading independent production banner Elephant.

Created by Emmanuel Chain and Thierry Bizot, Elephant is the company behind French drama hits such as “Desperate Parents,” “Killer by the Lake” and WorkinGirls.”

The partnership with Federation will allow Elephant to develop shows for the global market, tapping into Federation’s experience working with international talents, co-producers, broadcasters and streaming services.

Elephant recently hired Sandra Ouaiss, a former high-ranking executive from Newen, to came on board as executive producer and head of international.

With offices in Paris and Los Angeles, Federation Entertainment is one of the market’s most dynamic independent distributors, boasting international drama hits such as “The Bureau,” “Bad Banks,” “Hostages,” “Marseille” and “Find me in Paris.”

“When it comes to bringing together indie European talents, what better partners
See full article at Variety »

German Director Christian Schwochow To Helm Two Episodes Of Netflix’s ‘The Crown’

  • Deadline
German Director Christian Schwochow To Helm Two Episodes Of Netflix’s ‘The Crown’
German director Christian Schwochow is getting the royal treatment and taking on two episodes of Netflix’s The Crown.

Schwochow will be behind the camera for two episodes for the third season of Left Bank Pictures’ drama.

It is Schwochow’s most high-profile English-language project, having previously directed series including German History X, produced by Dark producer Wiedemann & Berg, Federation Entertainment’s insider trading drama Bad Banks and period drama The Tower.

He joins previous directors including Philip Martin, who has directed seven episodes, Benjamin Caron, who has directed five eps, Stephen Daldry, who has directed four eps and Julian Jarrold and Philippa Lowthorpe, who have both directed two episodes.

Details for the third and fourth season of The Crown are starting to trickle out. Olivia Colman replaces Claire Foy in the title role, with Tobias Menzies taking over from Matt Smith as Prince Philip. Helena Bonham Carter joins
See full article at Deadline »

Germany's Christian Schwochow to Direct Two Episodes of Netflix's 'The Crown'

Germany's Christian Schwochow to Direct Two Episodes of Netflix's 'The Crown'
German director Christian Schwochow is taking on The Crown.

Schwochow will become the first non-British director to helm the hit royals series for Netflix, stepping behind the camera for two episodes of season three.

Schwochow is one of Germany's most in-demand television directors. His mini-series The Tower (2012), set in communist East Germany, was a critical and ratings smash, drawing some 7.5 million viewers for public broadcaster Ard.

Nsu: German History X, a three-part mini-series on the infamous neo-Nazi terrorist cell, also for Ard, sold to Netflix internationally. Most recently, Schwochow directed the series Bad Banks for Ard. The financial thriller, set ...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter »

French Firm Federation Steps Into the U.S. Market

  • Variety
Streaming services have opened the door for multilingual series like worldwide Netflix hit “Narcos,” but dramas in English still dominate TV’s Golden Age, travel the most widely and draw the biggest distribution deals. International companies are scrambling for a piece of the action — including, perhaps surprisingly, producers in France, despite the country’s perceived snobbery about other languages.

Federation Entertainment, the 5-year-old firm behind Netflix’s first French show, “Marseille,” and Canal Plus spy show “The Bureau,” is the latest French player to step into the competitive U.S. market, with nearly a dozen English-language projects in the pipeline. Unlike outfits such as Gaumont or EuropaCorp, Federation is one of the few sizable, fully independent TV outfits left in France, and not only has opened an office in L.A. but is also developing projects with Paramount TV and other American companies.

Even so, breaking into the U.S.
See full article at Variety »
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