Danny Boyle is keeping busy in TV these days. In the U.S., he’s teamed with FX and his Slumdog Millionaire writer and producer Simon Beaufoy and Christian Colson for 10-part WWII miniseries Telemark. Closer to home, he’s readying a pilot for Channel 4‘s straight-to-series police comedy/drama Babylon. BAFTA winners Sam Bain and Jesse Armstrong are scripting the pilot which Boyle will direct. Brit Marling (Another Earth, Arbitrage) has now been cast in the lead as Liz Garvey, a new-media savvy American who’s parachuted in to revolutionize the PR department of London’s police force. James Nesbitt (The Hobbit) plays Chief Constable Richard Miller. Also in the ensemble cast are Paterson Joseph (Peep Show), Jill Halfpenny (EastEnders), Adam Deacon (Kidulthood), Daniel Kaluuya, Jonny Sweet, Andrew Brooke and Bertie Carvel. Described as “razor-sharp and visually audacious,” Babylon takes a wry look at the people and politics in the command rooms and on the frontlines of a modern police force, as it attempts to uphold the peace under constant scrutiny. The pilot shoots this fall for an early 2014 airdate and a further six episodes have been ordered for production in 2014. Boyle is exec producing with Robert Jones (The Usual Suspects), Armstrong and Bain. Producers are Jones and Derrin Schlesinger. Marling is repped by CAA, Nesbitt is repped by Artist Rights Group in the UK and by UTA.
Global Showbiz Briefs: UK, Australia Set ‘Homeland’ Season Bows; Travel Channel Orders Jonathan Phang Series; More
UK, Australia Won’t Wait Long For Season 3 Of ‘Homeland’
The UKâs Channel 4 has set an October 6 start for Season 3 of Homeland. The show airs at 9 PM and will get to Britain one week after its U.S. debut on Showtime on September 29. Meanwhile, folks in Australia will get to stream the first episode online while it’s airing in the States. Oz newspaper The Age says that Network Ten is using the stunt to launch its new streaming platform, tenplay. Ten will stream the episode from 2.15 PM Sydney time on Monday, September 30, to any internet user in Australia. Thatâs 9:15 PM Sunday night in LA, so the show will be on a 15-minute delay. So far the experiment only covers the first episode with the broadcaster waiting to gauge response before making plans for further first-run streaming. The regular season is planned for 8:30 PM Mondays.
Travel Channel Orders ‘Jonathan Phangâs Gourmet Express’
Travel Channel has commissioned new six-part series, Jonathan Phangâs Gourmet Express. The cooking show will follow Phang as he journeys on some of the worldâs most iconic trains, including the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express and the Eastern & Orient Express, for a series of culinary adventures. Each episode will feature stops along the route to explore different foods and cultures. The series premieres in February and rolls out on Food Network in various markets later in the year. Transparent Television produces.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Amelia Pulsford Joins Sharp UK; CNBC’s ‘The Edge’ Looks For Tech’s Next Big Thing; More
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 todayâs 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 CNBCâs London regional HQ and be complemented by special reports on CNBC.com.
Iran Reopens Its Film Industry Body After 20 Months
Iran has reopened the House of Cinema, its main film industry guild. The move comes nearly two years after it was closed, the BBC reported, citing state news agency Irna. Per the report, Deputy Culture Minister Hojatollah Ayoubi said the decision indicates new President Hassan Rouhani’s support for films. The January 2012 closure of the body was decried by prominent filmmakers, including Oscar nominee Asghar Farhadi (A Separation). At a reopening ceremony, Ayoubi reportedly said, âWhen a cultural issue — like the one about the House of Cinema — becomes a political one, that is (because) the situation was not managed properly.â
Global Showbiz Briefs: ‘Smaug’ Score Recording Locks Down Town Hall; Martin Scorsese Tops Marrakech Fest Jury; More
Wellington Residents Can’t Access Town Hall During ‘Smaug’ Recording
New Zealand website Stuff reports that the people of Wellington have “essentially lost access” to the Town Hall while the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra records the score for …
Global Showbiz Briefs: Channel 4 Picks Up U.S. Series; San Sebastian To Premiere ‘Young And Prodigious Mr Spivet’; More
Channel 4 Imports ‘Hostages’, ’100′, ‘Tomorrow People’, ‘S.H.I.E.L.D.’
Britainâs Channel 4 has acquired a quartet of U.S. shows that will air in early 2014, including three from Warner Bros International Television: Hostages will air on Channel 4, while The 100 and The Tomorrow People will air on sister channel E4. Also coming to Channel4 is Marvelâs Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D., the new series from Marvel Television and ABC Studios. It premieres on C4 in the fall, soon after its ABC launch in the U.S. In a new commission, C4 has ordered Making Liberty, a three-part series based around the luxe Regent Street department store. Rize USA is producing the series that focuses on the store as it preps for the Christmas season. It will air in the fall.
‘The Young And Prodigious Mr Spivet’ Premiere Will Close San Sebastian
AmĂ©lie director Jean-Pierre Jeunetâs latest film, The Young And Prodigious Mr Spivet is set to world premiere at the San Sebastian Film Festival. It will close the proceedings on September 28. Helena Bonham Carter, Judy Davis, Kyle Catlett, Callum Keith Rennie, Robert Maillet and Dominique Pinon star. Gaumont backed the 3D movie about a 12-year-old child prodigy who lives on a ranch in Montana. His great talent for cartography and inventions soon is rewarded. A scientific institute announces that he has won a prestigious award, and he sets out across the country to collect it. The Weinstein Co. acquired the pic in Cannes.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Channel 4 Faces Airline Lawsuit, Primps For ‘Real Sex’; UK Bans Bruce Willis — Sort Of; More
Channel 4 Threatened With Lawsuit Over Ryanair Report
In the past year, the BBC has been the subject of harsh criticism — and legal action — over some of its reporting. Now it’s Channel 4‘s turn. A report by the network’s news program Dispatches has flown in the face of low-cost airline Ryanair, marking the second time in seven years the pair have butted heads. The investigative show’s Monday episode included concerns from unidentified pilots over the airlineâs fuel policy and safety measures. Ryanair now says it plans to sue. “Ryanair has instructed its lawyers to issue legal proceedings against Channel 4 Dispatches for defamation,” the no-frills airline said. The program highlighted three occasions in which Ryanair pilots called in emergency alerts because they were low on fuel. Ryanair says the incidents occurred because of bad weather and that EU regulations were met in each case. The Dublin-based carrier serves 30 countries in Europe and North Africa. In 2006, it was the subject of a separate Dispatches report, “Ryanair Caught Napping,” which criticized its safety, training and hygiene practices. Ryanair denied the allegations. Channel 4 told Deadline today, âWe stand by our journalism.â
‘Real Sex Season’ Coming To Channel 4
In other Channel 4 news, the network says it wants to be “very un-British and talk about what really goes on in Britainâs bedrooms.â To do so, it’s planning a thematic series of shows to form the Real Sex Season beginning in September. The focus will be the effect that pornography is having on peopleâs expectations of sex. Included among the new shows are Porn On The Teenage Brain, a study of the impact of readily-available, explicit content on adolescents; The Week The Women Came, produced by ITV’s The Garden, about a group of women on a mission to confront loss of libido; and Date My Porn Star, which gives three porn-obsessed men the chance to meet and date their favorite adult movie stars to see if they can distinguish between the fantasy and the reality.
Global Showbiz Briefs: Channel 4 Debuts UK’s First Mobile Catch-Up Service; Second INTV Conference Set For November
Channel 4 Debuts UK’s First Mobile Catch-Up Service
Channel 4 has become the first commercial UK broadcaster to offer a free offline mobile catch-up service. The ad-supported service allows viewers in Britain the opportunity to …
In what will be the first fully-subtitled drama to air on the UK’s Channel 4 in 20 years, the net has acquired premiere broadcast rights to French supernatural series Les Revenants. Zodiak is handling international sales on the thriller that was produced by Haut et Court for Canal Plus and originally aired to record numbers last fall. The show, re-titled Rebound in the UK, centers on a group of people in a small Alpine village who find themselves in a state of confusion, trying to return to their homes. What they donât yet know is that theyâve been dead for several years, and no one is expecting them back. Fabrice Gobert created the show based on the 2004 feature Les Revenants by Robin Campillo. Anne Consigny, Clotilde Hesme, Celine Sallette, Frederic Pierrot, Samir Guesmi and Guillaume Gouix star.
The UK is no stranger to subtitled fare – BBC Four airs such imported shows as Sweden’s Wallander, Denmark’s Borgen and Italy’s Inspector Montalbano. But the Rebound deal marks the second time in recent months that there’s been cross-Channel collaboration on a series. Sky Atlantic and Canal Plus started shooting last month on The Tunnel, the 10-part bilingual English-French adaptation of Scandinavian cop series The Bridge.
Quentin Tarantino Has Heated Exchange With UK Journalist On Film Violence, Says “I’m Not Your Slave”: Video
Promoting Oscar-nominated Django Unchained, which had its premiere in London last night, Quentin Tarantino refused to repeat his position on violence in movies during an interview with Channel 4 Evening News host Krishnan Guru-Murthy. Asked about the link between movie violence and real violence, Tarantino responds …
When historian Tom Hollandâs documentary, Islam: The Untold Story, originally aired on Channel 4 in late August, it prompted over 1,000 complaints to the network and 200 to regulator Ofcom. Now, the UK broadcaster has cancelled an invite-only screening that was to be held this Thursday at its London headquarters, saying it did so after “having taken security advice.” Among the Twitter messages Holland has received since the broadcast is one that reads, âYou might be a target in the streets. You may recruit some bodyguards, for your own safety.â
The controversial doc examines the origins of Islam and questions some of the writings in the Koran. In the film, Holland says, âWhen it comes to Islamâs beginnings, there is no full light of history… I felt like I was being sucked into a black hole.â After the Aug. 28 airing, the Islamic Education and Research Academy responded, saying in part, âHolland appears to have turned a blind eye to the rich Islamic historical tradition. There are no âblack holesâ and there is no missing information.â
In an interesting pairing, Martha Marcy May Marlene helmer Sean Durkin will make his British TV debut with Channel 4 drama Southcliffe, based on a script by Tony Grisoni, who wrote the Red Riding trilogy for the net …
Britainâs Channel 4 has pledged to invest nearly ÂŁ450 million towards original UK content in 2012, chief exec David Abraham announced today. The sum is an historic high for the network and should come as good news to the UK film industry where Channel 4 has lately been involved in such films as 2011âs local hit The Inbetweeners Movie as well as other notable indies Submarine, The Iron Lady, Shame and Tyrannosaur. It might not be such good news for US content creators, however, as Abraham noted the new spend is in part derived by pro-actively shifting some investment away from acquired, mainly US, programming, into UK commissioned content. A recent review of UK film policy urged Britainâs broadcasters to invest more in independent British film production with the head of the review committee noting Channel 4 had already done âpretty well by British film over the course of recent years,â
Jeremy Clarkson Strikes Again, Fry’s A Gentleman
The BBC has put an episode of Stephen Fryâs game show QI on the shelf following remarks made by Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson last week. The episode of the intellectual comedy quiz show, which Clarkson taped this past summer, was due to air tonight in the UK. But appearing on the BBCâs The One Show last week, Clarkson prompted outrage when he commented on the recent public workers strike in Britain, “I would have them taken outside and executed them in front of their families.” Clarkson apologized in due course, but heâs no stranger to this kind of controversy. Earlier this yearÂ Top Gear was criticized over comments about Mexicans which were perceived as racist. The Guardian has a compilation of Clarkson’s most famous flubs titled “Jeremy Clarkson: big mouth strikes again.” Meanwhile, I checked Stephen Fryâs Twitter feed to see if heâd made any comment about the networkâs decision to shelve the show, but heâs been busy promoting the Sherlock Holmes sequel in which he plays Holmesâ brother Mycroft and which premiered last night in London. He did, however, point to a new poll in which Winston Churchill was voted the greatest British gentleman of the 20th century, followed by filmmaker Richard Attenborough and … Stephen Fry.
New Appointments At Sky, National Geographic
Phil Edgar Jones has been named head of entertainment for Sky. He will have oversight on the bouquet of channels that includes Sky 1, Sky Arts and Sky Living. He will also commission shows for Sky Movies and the recently launched Sky Atlantic which is airing a host of HBO shows. Edgar Jones was previously creative director of independent producer Running Bare and creative director of Remarkable Pictures where he exec produced Big Brother on Channel 4. In related news, Hamish Mykura has been named executive vice president and head of international content for National Geographic Channels International. The former head of documentaries for Channel 4 will also become the London head of global development for National Geographic Channel. Mykura will oversee editorial development and production for the company and will supervise NGCIâs networks NGC, Nat Geo Wild and Nat Geo Adventure.