UK’s Channel 4 buys into Scottish indie Freedom Scripted

Mike Ellen

Embattled UK public broadcaster Channel 4 has invested in Glasgow-based independent production company Freedom Scripted via its Indie Growth Fund.

The prodco, which was founded in 2018 by former BBC, STV and World Productions development producer Mike Ellen, focuses on contemporary drama.

Its has projects in development include an adaptation of Sarah Moss’ novel Summerwater by John Donnelly; Glasgow-set crime thriller Southside; and Unseen, described as “a fresh take on invisibility” from Welsh writer Alan Harris.

The addition of Freedom Scripted takes the current portfolio of companies in the C4 IGF to 18, with ten companies having joined since 2020.

Caroline Murphy, who heads up the IGF, said the investment would allow Freedom to “make some key hires and take this business onto the next level.”

Ellen, who is CEO & creative director at Freedom Scripted, added: “Having built a strong slate of dramas with writers we love and with much more to come, I’m confident this investment will enable us to go to the next level and produce entertaining and talked about shows we can be proud of from all of the UK.”

Before founding Freedom Scripted, Ellen was scripted head of development at On The Corner and at Alex Rider producer Eleventh Hour.

He was previously part of the team at the BBC that greenlit shows including Murder, Peaky Blinders, Wallander and Shetland.

The future of C4 remains uncertain, with the UK government pushing ahead with plans to privatise the pubcaster despite fervent industry opposition.

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