Jane Campion Mulls More Minis
Director Jane Campion is no stranger to Cannes, but she’s usually here for the film festival. In town for Mipcom this week, she’s here in support of her BBC/Sundance Channel limited series Top Of The Lake. The six-hour drama is produced by Emile Sherman and Iain Canning (The King’s Speech) and stars Elisabeth Moss. The move to longform TV 20 years after leaving the medium put Campion in a new environment where she “really gained a lot of respect” for folks who work in the business all the time. “It’s so different to map out six hours; we were shooting a feature ever four and a half weeks,” she says. Undaunted, Campion and her co-writer Gerard Lee tell me they’re already thinking about doing another similar project that would be set in Thailand. Top Of The Lake, set in Campion’s home country of New Zealand, centers on a female detective (Moss) investigating the disappearance of a 12-year-old pregnant girl, who is the daughter of a local drug lord. Campion’s The Piano star Holly Hunter also appears as a sort of enlightened woman that Campion says she based on a man she once knew. BBC Two and Sundance will sked the series for next year.
‘Defiance’ Finds Canadian Home
Shaw Media has acquired Syfy’s Defiance for broadcast on Canada’s Showcase. The deal was made with NBCUniversal Television Canada on the future-set series. Showcase will air in the spring. Defiance introduces a completely transformed planet Earth, inhabited by the survivors of a universal war. It centers on Jeb Nolan (Grant Bowler), the law-keeper in frontier boomtown Defiance that is one of the new world’s few oases of civility and inclusion. The Syfy Trion Worlds partnership is the first-ever convergence of TV and Massive Multiplayer Online gaming. Julie Benz, Stephanie Leonidas, Tony Curran, Jaime Murray, Graham Greene and Mia Kirshner also star. The series is executive produced by Kevin Murphy and Michael Taylor. Production is currently underway in Toronto.
BBC/Sundance Mini ‘Restless’ Picked Up For Germany
ProSiebenSat.1 Media Group has acquired the German rights to the TV adaptation of William Boyd´s spy novel Restless. Hayley Atwell, Rufus Sewell, Michelle Dockery, Charlotte Rampling and Michael Gambon star in the BBC espionage thriller made in association with The Sundance Channel. UK-based Endor is producing the three-hour drama. Dockery plays a young woman in 1979 who learns that her mother (Rampling) has been living a double life and is really a former spy for the British Secret Service. In flashbacks to 1939 Paris, Atwell plays Rampling’s younger self who’s recruited into the service by and falls in love with Sewell’s spymaster. After a crucial mission collapses, she must go into hiding. Edward Hall is helming, Hilary Bevan Jones and Paul Frift are producers. Executive producers are Boyd, Matthew Read for the BBC and Christian Vesper for Sundance. Red Arrow International, a ProSieben Group company, is handling sales.
ITV Studios Sucks Up ‘The Money Pump’
Enhanced by the success of Homeland in the U.S., Israeli fare is hot right now. ITV Studios has taken format rights to Dori Media Group’s The Money Pump for adaptations in the U.S., the UK, Germany, Australia, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland. Local ITV production companies in each market will produce. The hourlong prime time game show sees contestants answer eight trivia questions against the clock as a money pump siphons away prize cash. The pump stops when two paired contestants pick the correct answers. The original show was created by Gili Golan, Adi Golan and Harel Joseffson and produced by Dori Media Darset and Tanin Productions and has been a success on Israel’s Channel 2.