News round-up: Sandberg hosts Hamas sexual violence doc; Fox extends ‘Animal Control’; Acorn TV & C5 order ‘Ellis’

Screams Before Silence (Source: Kastina Communications/Ran Mendelson)

Sandberg hosts Hamas sexual violence doc

Sheryl Sandberg, former COO of Meta and founder of LeanIn.org, is to host Screams Before Silence, a 1 x 60-minute documentary film shedding light on sexual violence committed by Hamas terrorists on 7 October 2023.

During the attacks on Israeli towns and at the Nova Music Festival, women and girls were raped, assaulted, and mutilated, with released hostages also revealing that sexual assaults were inflicted on Israeli hostages while in captivity.

Produced by Fauda firm Kastina Communications, the film sees Sandberg interview multiple eyewitnesses, released hostages, first responders, medical and forensic experts, and survivors of the Hamas massacres.

Filming in Israel has already been completed and the documentary is slated for release in April 2024 with international distribution rights currently under discussion.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to work with the world-renowned team at Kastina Communications to shine a light on the sexual violence committed by Hamas on October 7th,” said Sandberg.

“For the victims and eyewitnesses who survived, we must demand justice and hold their tormentors and rapists accountable for these crimes against humanity. And for those who did not survive, we must raise our voices because they cannot.”

Animal Control

Animal Control (Source: Fox)

Fox extends ‘Animal Control’

Fox Entertainment has renewed the workplace comedy Animal Control, starring Joel McHale, for a third season.

Created by Bob Fisher, Rob Greenberg and Dan Sterling, with Tad Quill serving as showrunner, Animal Control follows a group of local Animal Control workers whose lives are complicated by the fact that animals are simple, but humans are not.

“Animal Control is an incredibly irreverent series that expresses everything viewers expect from a Fox comedy,” said Michael Thorn, president of scripted programming, Fox Entertainment.

“It has an amazing amount of momentum behind it, and we’ve been so impressed by the work Joel, Bob, Rob, Dan, Tad, Jake and the entire cast are delivering for season two we wanted to reward them with the opportunity to deliver even more of this special show to fans next season.”

Sharon D Clarke (Source: Acorn TV/Darren Bell)

Acorn TV & C5 order ‘Ellis’

AMC Networks’ streaming platform Acorn TV and Paramount-owned UK broadcaster Channel 5 have co-commissioned a new, feature-length detective drama series Ellis.

Produced by Company Pictures, the three-part series will follow DCI Ellis, played by Sharon D. Clarke (Showtrial, Lost Boys & Faries, Rocketman), a tenacious cop who is parachuted into failing investigations.

Each two-hour episode sees Ellis – accompanied by her right-hand man DS Harper, played by Andrew Gower (The Winter King, Carnival Row, Outlander) – arrive at a different police station, where she will have to win over the local detectives and immerse herself in the cases she has come to solve. As a black female cop, Ellis is used to being dismissed and overlooked, but she is a first-class murder detective, with a determination for justice and a deep well of compassion for those who need it.

Sebastian Cardwell, deputy chief content officer, Paramount UK, said: “Ellis is a brilliant addition to our scripted slate, and we are thrilled to be working with the teams at Acorn TV and Company Pictures on this gripping new series.”

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