Netflix Has Eye For Brit Comedy ‘Mindhorn’; Takes Rights Outside UK


EXCLUSIVE: Netflix has acquired rights outside the UK to British comedy feature Mindhorn. Written by Julian Barratt and Simon Farnaby of cult favorite The Mighty Boosh, the film marks the feature helming debut of award-winning theater director Sean Foley (The Play What I Wrote). Mindhorn will launch in all Netflix territories on May 12, following the May 5 UK theatrical release by Studiocanal. Protagonist Pictures handles sales on the film whose trailer you can check out above.

The film is centered on Richard Thorncroft (Barratt), a pretentious actor in the twilight of his career who had a brief brush with fame in the late 1980s playing Mindhorn, a maverick detective from the Isle of Man with a robotic eye (think: The Equalizer meets Six Million Dollar Man meets Bergerac). But now his star has faded, and the only parts he can get are in commercials for orthopedic socks.

When a delusional killer phones the Isle of Man police saying “I’ll call the police station tomorrow at 4pm and if I’m not speaking to Detective Mindhorn in person, more people are going to die,” the police decide they have to find the actor who played Mindhorn to take the killer’s next call and lure him into custody. Thorncroft/Mindhorn of course sees the potential for publicity, and sets off in the hope of getting the profile he needs to launch a comeback.

Farnaby also stars with Andrea Riseborough, Essie Davis, Russell Tovey, Richard McCabe, David Schofield, Nicholas Farrell, Jessica Barden, Robin Morrissey, Harriet Walter and Simon Callow. Steve Coogan and Kenneth Branagh are also in the cast.

The movie is a Scott Free Films production in association with Baby Cow Productions for BBC Films, Isle of Man Films, Pinewood Pictures and BFI. Producers are Laura Hastings Smith and Jack Arbuthnott. Ridley Scott, Baby Cow’s Coogan and Christine Langan, Pinewood’s Ivan Dunleavy and Studiocanal’s Danny Perkins are among exec producers.

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