Drama round-up: Legendary’s new UK prodco; Wowow enters ‘Tokyo Vice’; Warner Bros. strikes Harris-Lawrence pact; African nets buys SynProNize shows

The Spanish Princess

Legendary links with Frost & Graham

Legendary Entertainment has linked up with Ashes To Ashes and The Spanish Princess duo Emma Frost and Matthew Graham to launch a new prodco.

Watford & Essex will be based in the UK city of Bristol and already has 10 projects on the slate, which will be supported by Legendary’s TV arm on the international market.

Frost and Graham are CEO’s at the new firm, while New Pictures’ head of production Christine Healy has been named COO.

The slate includes dark dramedy Hail Satan!, which is in development with the UK’s Channel 4, and Roxana, which is based on Daniel Defoe’s novel Roxana: The Fortunate Mistress.

Warner Bros. deals with Dee Harris-Lawrence

Warner Bros. Television Group has signed an exclusive multi-year overall deal with All Rise and David Makes Man executive producer and writer Dee Harris-Lawrence.

The deal marks WBTVG’s first overall pact with Harris-Lawrence and her first with any studio. Terms were not disclosed, but the agreement will see Harris-Lawrence develop, create and produce new scripted programming for the studio.

This includes dramas, comedies and potential longform projects for streaming services, including WarnerMedia’s HBO Max, cable and broadcast networks.

WBTVG previously worked with Harris-Lawrence on drama David Makes Man for OWN, as well as executive producer/co-showrunner of the CBS drama All Rise.

Wowow enters Tokyo Vice

Japanese pay-TV broadcaster Wowow has joined as a co-producer on Tokyo Vice, the forthcoming drama from Endeavor Content and HBO Max.

The show, which is being directed and exec produced by Michael Mann, has been written and created by JT Rogers and is loosely inspired by American journalist Jake Adelstein’s 2009 memoir, Tokyo Vice: An American Reporter On The Police Beat In Japan.

The series chronicles Adelstein’s daily descent into the sordid underbelly of Tokyo, where nothing and no one is truly what or who they seem.

Wowow has struck an all-rights distribution deal for the show in Japan, while HBO Max has exclusive US rights. The show began filming in Tokyo at the beginning of the year but went on a production hiatus due to coronavirus. It resumes production this week.

Piya Naam Ka Diya

African operators snag SynProNize shows

African operators eTV, Onua TV, and StarTimes have struck a raft of deals with Dubai-based distribution and production company SynProNize.

Drama series Cello was licensed to Onua TV in Ghana, with the show – which explores an indecent proposal – originally produced for MBC in the Middle East.

eTV has added romantic drama series Piya Naam Ka Diya (aka All for Love), while StarTimes has acquired drama duo Swaragini (aka A Tale of Two Sisters) and Gathbandhan (aka The Odd Couple). Both were originally in Hindi and debuted on Indian network Colors.

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