News round-up: Cineflix preps Wakeland adaptation; ITV hunts for Yorkshire Ripper doc; STV Player snags Sony dramas

Sam Wiebe. Pic credit: Paul Joseph

Cineflix preps Wakeland adaptation

Cineflix Productions has optioned the rights and begun development on a new crime drama series based on Canadian author Sam Wiebe’s Wakeland novels.

The book series, which includes Invisible DeadCut You Down, and Hell And Gone, follows Wakeland, a 29-year-old ex-cop turned P.I, who fights for justice, his clients, and the soul of Vancouver.

Cineflix Productions brokered the TV rights deal with Michael Levine at Westwood Creative Artists for Chris Casuccio.

“Sam is one of the most exciting writers in Canada, and the Vancouver-noir world he’s created is an incredible foundation for an original series. I believe Wakeland and the gritty world he inhabits is primed for a global audience,” said Jeff Vanderwal, executive producer, Cineflix Productions.

Adam Luria

ITV hunts for Yorkshire Ripper doc

UK broadcaster ITV has commissioned Yorkshire Ripper: The Secret Murders, a two-part documentary exploring a series of unsolved crimes.

Produced by UK indie Impossible Factual, the 2 x 60-minute series examines a string of unsolved murders and attacks that are suspected to be work of the now deceased ‘Yorkshire Ripper’ Peter Sutcliffe.

Airing 23-24 February on ITV, the series is based on the book of the same name by former police intelligence officer Chris Clark and investigative journalist Tim Tate and directed by Adam Luria. It pieces together evidence which indicates that Sutcliffe is the perpetrator of over 20 unsolved murders and at least five unsolved attempted murders in England.

“Even those familiar with the Sutcliffe saga will be shocked by the true scale of his crimes revealed in this series, far beyond his perceived hunting grounds in the North of England, stretching back years before his earliest confirmed victims, and including three of the longest miscarriages of justice in British history,” said Luria

“Our exclusive interviews with friends and families of victims whose murders remain officially ‘unsolved’ shine a light on the full extent and fallout of Sutcliffe’s offending and provide a powerful call for justice for the loved ones of his ‘secret’ victims.”

Masters Of Sex

STV Player snags Sony dramas

STV Player has inked a deal with Sony Pictures Television (SPT), which will see seven new international drama series added to the free streaming service.

Leading the batch of new titles is dystopian thriller The Commons, starring Joanne Froggatt. The eight-part series – set in Australia in the not-so-distant future as the devastating impact of climate change is taking hold – follows a neuropsychologist who is desperate to become a mother at a time when bringing a child into the world is far more complicated than it used to be.

Also coming to the platform as part of the SPT deal is all four series of Michael Sheen-starring period drama, Masters Of Sex. The US series, tells the true story of sexual research pioneers William H. Masters and Virginia E. Johnson.

The five other new drama series in the content deal are Necessary Roughness, The Art of More, The Player, Sequestered and The Mob Doctor. All of the titles will be available to viewers across the UK, following STV Player’s launch on all major UK platforms in 2020.

Richard Williams, MD of digital, STV said: “High-quality international drama is in STV Player’s DNA, so we’re delighted to be adding even more critically-acclaimed series to the platform as part of this wide-ranging new deal with SPT.”

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