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.
Wolstencroft, creator of Spooks, and Mirren met 10 years ago on the BAFTA-winning BBC spy drama and have been writing partners ever since. Mirren spent the last decade working primarily in the U.S. on Without A Trace, Third Watch and Criminal Minds, where he rose to executive producer/co-showrunner. Wolstencroft just finished production on BBC legal thriller The Escape Artist starring ex-Doctor Who David Tennant. Mirren and Wolstencroft are repped by WME, Curtis Brown Group in the UK, and attorneys Steve Katleman (Mirren) and Lawrence Rose (Wolstencroft).