MIPTV: Canal Plus Greenlights ‘Spotless’ Drama From ‘Shameless’ & ‘CSI’ Vets

TC-Spotless-FINAL-A4Canal Plus has given an 10-episode order to one-hour crime drama Spotless. Co-created by Shameless UK producer and writer Ed McCardie and Corinne Marrinan (CSI, Crossing Lines), the series is produced by Studiocanal’s Tandem CommunicationsRead More »

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Global Showbiz Briefs: Gemma Arterton Treads Boards In ‘Made In Dagenham’; Dave Heuten Joins FremantleMedia’s Belgium Arm; More

Gemma Arterton Coming To West End With ‘Made In Dagenham’
Gemma ArtertonFormer Bond girl Gemma Arterton is set to star in a West End musical version of 2010 film Made In Dagenham. She’ll play Rita O’Grady, a role originated by Sally Hawkins in the Nigel Cole-directed movie. The show is a musical comedy about women who battled for equal rights at a Ford factory in Essex, England, in 1968. The BBC reports that Richard Bean, who wrote One Man, Two Guvnors, is penning the script for the show, which opens November 5 at the Adelphi Theater. Rupert Goold (Enron, American Psycho) is directing. Arterton recently starred onstage in The Duchess Of Malfi. Read More »

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French Presidential Scandal Spills Over To Local Oscars: Have The César Awards Suddenly Become A Must-Watch?

quai-d-orsay-afficheThis morning’s César Award nominations set Twitter and the media ablaze in France, but not for the usual who’s in/who’s out debate. The reason for today’s increased gusto was that listed amongst the noms for the Césars, the local equivalent to the Oscars, is a supporting turn for Julie Gayet in Bertrand Tavernier’s political satire Quai D’Orsay. The accomplished actress and producer has famously been linked to an alleged affair with France’s president, François Hollande, since earlier this year. That alone, it’s been suggested, could give Canal Plus its best-ever ratings for the César ceremony when the kudofest airs February 28. Last year’s César ceremony drew 2.58M viewers, one of Canal’s top three scores since it started broadcasting the show in 1994. But let’s be honest, the Césars are usually a snoozefest, and even sometimes an embarrassment. I’ve been attending or following the show for more than 15 years and there have been plenty of groan-worthy moments including fumbling attempts to “Oscarize” the proceedings with the host being inserted into clips of the nominated films à la Billy Crystal. One French exec I spoke with today said of Gayet’s nomination, “Well in that case, I’ll definitely watch!”

julie gayetHere’s some background on why: The French are soaking up a sort of delicious ironie of Gayet picking up her first ever César nomination for a role in a politically themed movie set inside the Foreign Affairs Ministry (see the trailer here). What’s more, as France’s Premiere magazine pointed out this morning and, as Twitter keeps tweeting, her character’s name is Valérie — the first name of President Hollande’s longtime companion, Valérie Trierweiler, who moved into the Elysée Palace with him post-election and from whom he has now split. Read More »

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Global Showbiz Briefs: Colombia Orders 60 Episodes Of ‘ER’; ‘Tbilisi, I Love You’ Hits Georgia Theaters In February; More

Colombia Paging ‘ER’ With 60-Episode Order
ER is going Latino. Warner Bros International Television Production today announced the first Latin American format deal for the seminal medical series. RCN, Fox International er-original-cast-460x250Channels and TC have commissioned a local-language version for Colombia with a 60-episode order. Colombia’s Resonant is producing for air this spring. Originally produced in the U.S. by Constant c Productions and Amblin Television in association with Warner Bros Television, the series premiered on NBC in 1994 and ran for 15 seasons. It is the most Emmy-nominated series in history with 124 and notably helped kickstart the careers of George Clooney and Julianna Margulies. “Even though ER is a fundamental American series, its characters and situations are so strong, moving and universal that will surely find a place in the hearts of Latin American audiences,” said Fernando Gaitan, RCN’s VP Content and Production. “We are eager to have it on our screen.”

‘Tbilisi, I Love You’ Opening Next Month In Georgia
Tbilisi, I Love You, part of Emmanuel Benbihy’s Cities Of Love franchise that started with Paris Je T’Aime and New York, I Love You, has set a February 20 release date in Georgia. The movie is a series of 10 short films that are written and directed by natives of Georgia and take on a personal narrative about the republic’s capital city. Malcolm McDowell and Ron Perlman both feature. McDowell’s vignette centers on an actor who reluctantly agrees to a one-month shoot in Tbilisi and develops a love affair with the city. Perlman’s short sees him as a nameless American motorcyclist who rides through Tbilisi’s remote areas with a woman named Freedom. Tbilisi, I Love You is produced by Storyman Pictures David and Nika Agiashvili. Credo Cinema’s Jason Speer, Ever So Close’s Benbihy, as well as Paata Trapaidze are exec producers. A festival schedule is being determined. In the meantime, here’s a trailer:

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Cannes: Former Canal Plus Chief Pierre Lescure Will Be Festival’s Next President

Pierre Lescure publie son autobiographie chez Grasset Crédit : Bertini/GrassetPierre Lescure is back. After weeks of speculation, the former Canal Plus chief has been officially named to succeed Gilles Jacob as president of the Cannes Read More »

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EU Antitrust Body To Scrutinize U.S. Studio Deals With Major European Pay-TV Groups

euro union flagThe European Commission has opened formal antitrust proceedings to examine certain provisions in licensing agreements between several major U.S. film studios and Europe’s biggest pay-TV groups. The EC said today that it’s looking into whether certain deal clauses covering … Read More »

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Vivendi Agrees To Pay $1.4B For Lagardère Stake In Canal Plus France

By | Monday October 28, 2013 @ 1:34pm PDT

It’s a big day for $1B+ overseas TV deals. French conglomerate Vivendi has agreed to pay €1.02B ($1.4B) in cash for media group Lagardère’s 20% holding in Canal Plus France. This will give Vivendi … Read More »

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Canal Plus, Dailymotion Team To Launch Canal+ Canada VOD Platform

By | Wednesday October 16, 2013 @ 8:12am PDT

Leading French pay-TV operator Canal Plus is planting its first flag in Canada under this new deal with Dailymotion, Europe’s answer to YouTube. Canal+ Canada will launch in November as a VOD platform carrying original … Read More »

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Hit French Series ‘The Returned’ Gets Book Deal With Pan Macmillan

By | Wednesday October 16, 2013 @ 3:06am PDT

First it was a somewhat obscure 2004 movie that sold 32,000 tickets in France, then it became a French TV show that sold around the world and is being adapted into a U.S. series. Now, it’s getting the novelization treatment. Pan Macmillan has acquired worldwide publishing rights to The Returned (Les Revenants/Rebound) in a six-figure deal. Author Seth Patrick will develop two books based on storylines from the show’s first two seasons, although Season 2 won’t film until the second half of next year. Patrick wrote the supernatural horror/thriller trilogy Reviver, which was optioned by Legendary Entertainment. The first Returned novel will be published in the fall of 2014. A big hit on France’s Canal Plus, the series crossed the Channel to air in French with English subtitles in the UK and is also getting an original run in the U.S. on Sundance Channel – rare for a foreign-language program. A&E Network nabbed rights for an American remake to be developed as a co-production between A+E Studios and FremantleMedia North America. Deadline reported last month that Lost and Bates Motel‘s Carlton Cuse is in discussions about taking on the adaptation. The story focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, having not aged and unaware of their own fatality. Read More »

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Global Showbiz Briefs: Amelia Pulsford Joins Sharp UK; CNBC’s ‘The Edge’ Looks For Tech’s Next Big Thing; More

By | Tuesday September 24, 2013 @ 10:00pm PDT

Amelia Pulsford Tapped As Director Of Content at Sharp UK
Amelia Pulsford has been named director of content for the newly formed London branch of Core Media‘s Sharp Entertainment. Reality producer Sharp, whose credits include Man V. Food, Extreme Couponing, Bad Ink and Doomsday Preppers, is launching Sharp UK to expand into the competitive European space. Pulsford previously worked for Sharp Entertainment in the U.S. as a producer on Fortune Diggers and Punkin Chunkin, among others. She has also been a producer on Bear Grylls: Escape From Hell and Car Vs. Wild for Discovery International. She will work closely with American Idol parent CORE Media’s UK-based international team.

CNBC’s ‘The Edge’ Focuses On Long-Term Tech Investments
CNBC is launching a new half-hour series looking at long-term investment opportunities created by today’s technological innovations. The Edge will be fronted by network reporters including Ross Westgate, Martin Song, Karen Tso and Carolin Roth, who will travel to various locales to find “the next big thing”. The monthly show debuts September 25 across CNBC in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia-Pacific and the U.S. It will be produced and edited from CNBC’s London regional HQ and be complemented by special reports on CNBC.com. Read More »

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Vivendi Mulls Split Of Media And Telecoms Businesses

By | Thursday September 12, 2013 @ 3:56am PDT

Taking a page from News Corp’s book, French conglomerate Vivendi is moving closer to splitting itself into two separate companies. Canal Plus and Universal Music Group owner Vivendi says it is launching a study … Read More »

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Music Box Films Plans VOD/DVD Release Of French Supernatural Series ‘The Returned’

By | Monday September 9, 2013 @ 11:38am PDT

The Returned (Les Revenants) originally aired in France on Canal Plus last fall. Since then, the UK’s Channel 4 broadcast the first series, renamed Rebound, drawing an average 1.5 million viewers each week. A second … Read More »

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French Investment Group Could Pay $91M For European Film Portal AlloCiné: Reports

By | Friday July 12, 2013 @ 5:27am PDT

In May, talks broke down between Yahoo and French online video site Dailymotion with France refusing to relinquish control of the successful start-up. Two months later, another key Internet company is poised to return to its Gallic roots. French investment group Fimalac has entered exclusive negotiations to acquire AlloCiné, the top film web portal in France, which greatly resembles MovieFone. The current owner is U.S. based Tiger Global Management. Fimalac chief Marc Ladreit de Lacharrière is understood to be willing to pay up to 70M euros ($91M) for the site which also operates local versions in such countries as Germany, Spain, the UK, Turkey and Brazil. AlloCiné was founded in 1993 as a phone service for movie showtimes. It became the first European cinema portal in 1997 and was owned for a time by Canal Plus. According to French media reports, the company has annual revenues of 19M euros. Fimalac has diversified interests including 50% of Fitch Ratings, Read More »

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Global Showbiz Briefs: Murderous Coloring Book Yanked; China’s Pop Culture Snobs; Canal Plus Series Lineup Set; More

Coloring Book Based On Horror Movies Yanked In UK After Marketing Gaffe
UK retailer Tesco has pulled a horror-movie-themed coloring book from its website after it was mistakenly marketed to children ages 5 to 8. The book, Colour Me Good Arrggghhhh!! includes images from Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho, Clive Barker’s Hellraiser, Steven Spielberg’s Jaws and Adrian Lyne’s Fatal Attraction. According to the BBC, Tesco said the book had been placed in the wrong category when listed on its website by a third-party seller. Author, artist and publisher Mel Elliott said the book is indeed meant for an adult audience of “playful grown-ups.”

Brit TV Dramas Drive ‘Snobbish Pop-Cultural Hierarchy’ In China
British dramas such as Downton Abbey and Sherlock are big hits at home and abroad, but in China they’re also part of what the Wall Street Journal calls “an increasingly snobbish pop-cultural hierarchy.” Described by local media as a “disdain chain,” it works like this: British drama fans look down on folks who prefer U.S. shows, and they in turn look down on Korean soap fans. The lowest of the low in the disdain chain are fans of domestic dramas. The taste for high-end British fare like Downton and Sherlock is a growing phenomenon. Entgroup compiled levels of discussion on different social media sites to find that British dramas are catching on with the wealthy youth and account for upwards of 9% of foreign TV discussion. Also notable, more than half of those who follow British dramas on social media sites have at least a bachelor’s degree, Entgroup found. Hit Brit shows like Downton are expected to have 160M online followers in the next two to three years. Sohu.com, Youku Tudou and Tencent all have dedicated online channels for British dramas and the Journal says the latter two are competing to sign exclusive deals with distributors like BBC Worldwide and Fremantle Media to stream the shows. Read More »

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Cannes: Jail Term For Man Who Disrupted Canal Plus TV Show With Fake Gunshots

Nary a day went by at last month’s Cannes Film Festival without some sort of non-movie-related scandal erupting on the Croisette. Thieves who made off with millions in jewelry have yet to be apprehended, but a man now … Read More »

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Simon Mirren & David Wolstencroft To Write Canal Plus Drama Series ‘Versailles’

By | Monday June 24, 2013 @ 4:28pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

EXCLUSIVE: British TV writer-producers Simon Mirren and David Wolstencroft have come on board to rewrite Versailles, an English-language period drama series for French pay TV network Canal Plus. The duo will executive produce the 12-episode series, set at the Court of French King Louis XIV, alongside Anne Thomopoulos, who executive produces another European historical drama series, Borgia. On Versailles, co-produced by CAPA Drama and Zodiak’s Marathon, Mirren and Wolstencroft replace Mad Men‘s Andre and Maria Jacquemetton, who were signed for the project two years ago. Versailles is being fast-tracked for possible production start in early 2014. Zodiak Rights will handle worldwide distribution in non-English speaking territories. Read More »

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Global Showbiz Briefs: Tom Hardy Hosts ‘Poaching Wars’; Big Bucks For Aussie Cricket; ITV Preps Singing Show; More

By | Tuesday June 4, 2013 @ 9:00pm PDT

Tom Hardy To Host ITV’s ‘Poaching Wars’

Tom Hardy will host ITV documentary series Poaching Wars With Tom Hardy, a look at the wholesale wildlife poaching crisis in Africa. ITV says the actor conceived the proposition for … Read More »

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Global Showbiz Briefs: François Ivernel Exits Pathé; Canal Plus France Legal Battle Will Go To Mediation

By | Friday May 31, 2013 @ 9:00pm PDT

Veteran Exec François Ivernel Exits Pathé To Launch Production Company

Pathé said today that veteran top executive François Ivernel has resigned to launch Montebello Productions, a London-based film-production company that will open June 3. He most recently … Read More »

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Cannes: Fake Gunshots Interrupt Canal Plus Live Broadcast – Video

Canal Plus‘ nightly news program Le Grand Journal, which broadcasts live across from the Martinez Hotel here in Cannes, was interrupted tonight when gunshots were heard in the crowd. Jury members Christoph Waltz and … Read More »

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