Following a spate of recent format deals, today seems like the perfect day to talk Turkey — the country, not this afternoon’s traditional table centerpiece. Last April, I wrote about the Balkan republic’s potential as a fresh source of adaptable formats. That was spurred on by deals with the U.S. that at the time included drama Runner (formerly The End, and in Turkish, Son) being acquired by Fox, and CBS giving a pilot order to competition show In The Spotlight (Keep Your Light Shinging). Since then, NBC landed Game Of Silence, a drama project from Carol Mendelsohn, David Hudgins and Sony TV. That one is based on the Turkish series Suskunlar.
Now, a couple of new shows are in the hopper that will be worth keeping an eye on. Endemol Turkey is prepping primetime scripted dramas Sparrow Palace and Overturn for local networks Star TV and ATV, respectively. And, its first drama proejct, Broken Pieces (Paramparca) is launching on Star TV in early December (see trailer below). Sparrow Palace (Serce Sarayi) will be set in Istanbul and is a contemporary comedy/drama about a young, beautiful widow with a dark bent. It will air in early 2015. Overturn (Alabora) is also set in the present and is a family saga about love and revenge; it will also air next year. Broken Pieces, meanwhile, was acquired by Turkish specialist Global Agency at Mipcom and has at least 10 offshore broadcasters circling. The romance stars Erkan Petekkaya and Nurgul Yesilkaya and is written by Ayfer Tunc, known for record-breaking hits Aliye and 1001 Nights.
“In the last year, we’ve seen Endemol Turkey expand from a purely non-scripted producer to become a significant player in drama production,” said Marina Williams, Endemol’s CEO of Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East/North Africa operations. “Turkish drama is proving very successful among international clients and we look forward to Endemol Turkey’s scripted titles gaining popularity both locally and internationally.” Here’s the Broken Pieces trailer: