Just a few weeks before its Paddington sequel hits theaters, Studiocanal says it has put an animated TV series in development based on the bear created by Michael Bond. A 52×11 series is eyed for launch in late 2018 or early 2019 and is part of Studiocanal parent Vivendi’s overall strategy to further expand the franchise which also includes Paddington Run, an official mobile game. The first Paddington film, produced by David Heyman, grossed $268M worldwide.
BBC Four has acquired French series Missions, the channel’s first international drama pick-up with a sci-fi theme. AB International Distribution handles rights on the critically acclaimed Missions which is set in the not too distant future when the first-ever manned mission to Mars is launched by eccentric Swiss billionaire William Meyer (Mathias Mlekuz). After 10 months of space travel, the crew are just one day away from reaching Mars when they learn they’ve been overtaken by a rival American craft, and will no longer be first to land on the planet. When a distress message is then received from the Americans, the French team’s exploration mission becomes a rescue attempt. After a chaotic landing on Mars, they discover a survivor. But he is not from the American mission. He’s Russian — a cosmonaut named Vladimir Komarov, who died on a mission to space in 1967. The 10-part series is created by Henri Debeurme, Julien Lacombe and Ami Cohen.
Beta Film has boarded the second season of Medici: Masters Of Florence. The Magnificent, and will kick off sales at Mipcom next week. From executive producer Frank Spotnitz and Altice Group, the series stars Daniel Sharman (Teen Wolf, Fear The Walking Dead), Bradley James (Homeland, Merlin) and Sean Bean (Game Of Thrones). The eight episode intrigue is currently shooting in Tuscany and Rome. Sharman plays Lorenzo, who is forced to assume leadership of the family-run bank at a young age in a turbulent, dangerous era. He is determined to use his power to usher in a cultural and political revolution, and in so doing becomes beloved by the people as “The Magnificent.” But he is swiftly in conflict with the head of Florence’s other powerful banking family, Jacopo Pazzi (Bean), who will stop at nothing to defeat Lorenzo. Jon Cassar (24) and Jan Michelini (Un Passo Dal Cielo) are directing. The cast also features Sarah Parish (Pillars Of The Earth), Alessandra Mastronardi (Master Of None), Synnøve Karlsen (Clique), Raoul Bova (The Tourist) and Julian Sands (Gotham). The Magnificent is a Lux Vide production in collaboration with Rai Fiction, Altice Group and Big Light Productions.
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment and STXinternational, have set a multi-year home entertainment deal in the UK and Ireland. SPHE will handle distribution and marketing for STXi’s new release content, beginning in January 2018 with Taylor Sheridan’s Wind River. Other titles include Reese Witherspoon comedy Home Again and Andy Serkis’s Breathe with Andrew Garfield and Claire Foy.