WBD unveils first European scripted original, with French show exploring Bataclan aftermath

Vera Peltekian

Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD) has revealed its first major scripted production in Europe, following the company’s move last year to cut back on originals from the region.

The Mythomaniac Of The Bataclan (working title) is a 4 x 52-minute scripted drama that picks up the true story of Christelle, who creates a support group in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks in Paris. However, it becomes clear that her connection with the tragedy is not as it seems, threatening to unravel a deeper web of lies.

The psychological thriller is being produced by StudioFact Stories with June Films, and directed by Just Philippot (The Swarm).

Fanny Burdino, Jean-Baptiste Delafon, Samuel Doux and Alexandre Kauffmann are writing, with the story loosely based on Kauffmann’s non-fiction book La Mythomane Du Bataclan.

The show, which is also the first French original scripted series for WBD’s upcoming – and as-yet unnamed – streamer will star Laure Calamy (Call My Agent!) as Christelle.

Véra Peltekian, the former Canal+ exec who became VP & head of streaming originals at WBD France last year, said: “Bringing the young, talented director Just Philippot, and the brilliant, popular actress Laure Calamy together in a disturbing and dizzying thriller is a great example what we want to embody in our French productions.”

Priya Dogra, WBD’s president of EMEA, added: “France is a key territory for us in EMEA. We’re looking forward to launching our streaming service there in due time. Véra and her team are developing an terrific slate of content that will delight audiences and we’re excited for the start of production of our first scripted series.”

The commission comes eight months since WBD said it was scaling back original productions for HBO Max in Europe, cutting shows from the Nordics, Central Europe, the Netherlands and Turkey entirely.

France and Spain escaped the hit to original production, but numerous programming execs departed including Antony Root’s team in the region, as revealed by TBI.

TBI had earlier revealed that the global expansion of HBO Max had been stopped in the wake of the $43bn merger that created WBD, with the country instead set to receive the combined streamer that remains in the works.

Casey Bloys, who was named HBO & HBO Max chairman and CEO last year, told TBI earlier this month that WBD’s international division under Gerhard Zeiler had a “sizeable investment” for shows and is now working more closely with the US team on commissions.

WBD is also prepping the second instalment of Spanish cult horror eight-parter 30 Coins from Alex de la Iglesia, which will star Paul Giamatti (Billions).

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