Entertainment One (eOne) is continuing to back A-list television talent after striking a first-look deal with Emily Mortimer’s production company King Bee Productions. The producer and distributor will act as the studio on all King Bee series, which includes a number of scripted shows in development with Amazon and TruTV.
King Bee, which is run by The Newsroom star Mortimer and her husband Alessandro Nivola, was behind HBO and Sky comedy Doll & Em (pictured), which starred Mortimer and her friend Dolly Wells and ran for two seasons. Mortimer told me in 2013 that King Bert, which at the time was developing a TV series based on Kathy Lette’s comedy novel The Boy Who Fell To Earth, about the author’s relationship with her son, who has Asperger’s, was not a “vanity” project and she intended to turn it into a fully-formed production company.
It is the latest high-profile television deal for eOne, which recently struck a first-look deal with Steve Buscemi, Stanley Tucci and Wren Arthur’s Olive Productions and Brad Peyton and Jeff Fierson’s ASAP Entertainment. It also owns Mark Gordon’s eponymous production company, behind hits such as ABC’s Designated Survivor. The deal was struck by eOne’s Polly Williams, VP of Scripted Development and SVP of Scripted Programming Carolyn Newman.
King Bee is currently also in post-production on feature film To Dust, which stars Matthew Broderick and Son of Saul’s Geza Rohrig.
“King Bee is now at a moment where we are ready to grow and eOne is the perfect partner for our slate of projects which are being developed in both the U.S and the UK. We are delighted to have a globally-minded studio to help us reach worldwide audiences and who appreciates our particular sensibility,” said Mortimer and Nivola.
Pancho Mansfield, eOne’s President, Global Scripted Programming, Television added: “Emily and Alessandro have distinguished themselves not only in front of the camera, but also as producers of critically-acclaimed and personal stories that resonate with audiences. As producers, they bring a strong sensibility that shines through in both drama and comedy. We’re thrilled to be joining forces with them.”