After a decade at Warner Bros. TV, I. Marlene King, the creative force behind Freeform’s Pretty Little Liars franchise, is moving to 20th Century Fox Television with a multi-year overall deal.
The pact comes less then a week after the official close of the Disney-Fox deal, which made 20th TV and Freeform corporate siblings in a new TV group overseen by Dana Walden.
Under the overall deal, King will develop, write, produce and direct projects for network, cable and streaming platforms through her production company, Long Lake Media. Joining King at 20th TV will be Long Lake Media’s EVP of Development Lauren Wagner.
At 20th TV, King will work with President of Creative Affairs Jonnie Davis and EVP of Development, Comedy and Drama, Terence Carter.
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“Terence and I were obsessed with bringing Marlene to 20th because she’s such a special talent– her voice is so specific and wildly entertaining and relevant,” said Davis. “Pretty Little Liars is a delicious, smart, juicy soap that spoke to women, teens and millennials in such a powerful way, and Now and Then remains a favorite film of so many of us here. Marlene’s hire is part of our ongoing strategy of bringing the best creative talents to our studio and offering them the widest array of platforms for which to produce their biggest, boldest ideas. We’re thrilled she’s made 20th her exclusive home.”
The 1995 coming-of-age film Now and Then, written by King, helped put her on the map. Directed by Lesli Linka Glatter, it starred Christina Ricci, Thora Birch, Demi Moore, Rosie O’Donnell, Melanie Griffith and Rita Wilson.
King went on to write a segment of the Emmy-nominated HBO telefilm If These Walls Could Talk and develop and executive produce the series Pretty Little Liars for Freeform, which was a massive TV and social media hit, running for seven seasons. King also has been behind the two PLL spinoffs to date, the 2013 Ravenswood. and Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists, which debuted last week.
“I could not be more excited to join Jonnie, Terence and the 20th team,” King said. “They’ve embraced my voice with open arms and it’s a perfect time to create daring new shows for all platforms.”
On the film side, King also wrote the screenplay for Just My Luck. She is repped by WME and attorneys Kevin Yorn and Gregg Gellman.
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