Netflix continues UK investment with seven new scripted orders

The Crown

Netflix has commissioned seven new original scripted series in the UK, with all of the shows to be written and produced domestically.

The shows were ordered by the UK original series team, led by VP Anne Mensah, as part of the streamer’s continuing investment in the country, and following the recent announcement that Netflix is poised to have made a record-breaking UK production spend of $1bn in 2020.

“Setting up a team entirely based in the UK was always about being able to better connect to the fantastic programme makers we have here – to provide a space for writers, producers, directors and actors that feels local, friendly and familiar but also provides talent the opportunity to make shows that will impact on a global scale. UK-made stories really do speak to the world,” said Mensah.

Director and producer Sam Mendes (1917, Skyfall), and his Neal Street Productions are working on a 6 x 30-minute series called The Red Zone for the streamer.

Written by Barney Ronay and Jonathan Liew, the series is described as a comedy about football “but also not about football”.

Anne Mensah

Clerkenwell Films, meanwhile, are working on the 8 x 30-minute Baby Reindeer, written by and starring Richard Gadd and based on a true story about his unusual relationship with his stalker.

Catalyst Global Media and Doghouse Pictures have teamed up for a 6 x 60-minute horror series with the working title of Cuckoo Song. Writers Sarah Dollard, Andrea Gibb and Corinna Faith are adapting Frances Hardinge’s novel about two sisters who must undo a supernatural pact gone wrong.

Imaginarium Productions is producing the 8 x 60-minute Half Bad, written by Joe Barton, who also exec produces alongside Andy Serkis, Jonathan Cavendish and Will Tennant.

The story, based on the trilogy of books by Sally Green, follows a teenager who is the illegitimate son of the world’s most feared witch.

Joe Cornish (Attack The Block) is meanwhile writing and directing the 8 x 60-minute Lockwood & Co through his Complete Fiction label, with Nira Park and Rachel Prior attached to exec produce alongside him.

Based on the novels by Jonathan Stroud, the supernatural adventure series follows a trio of teenage ghost hunters.

After Life

Man Vs Bee is a 10 x 10-minute comedy starring Rowan Atkinson (Mr Bean) as a man at war with a bee while looking after a posh mansion. The series was created by Atkinson and Will Davies and is being produced by HouseSitter Productions, with Davies and Chris Clark attached to exec produce.

Created and written by Sophie Petzal, the 7 x 60-minute The Seven Deaths Of Evelyn Hardcastle is being adapted from the debut novel by Stuart Turton – a body-swapping murder mystery set within the ground of a large country estate. House Productions is producing, with Juliette Howell and Tessa Ross attached to exec produce alongside Petzal.

These new series join other UK-made shows currently in production for Netflix, including The Crown, After Life and Sex Education.

The news also follows the recent announcement that Netflix is to start declaring the more than $1.3bn it makes from British subscribers to UK tax authorities, after facing increasing political pressure and questions around its low tax bill.

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