PASADENA, CA – January 8, 2016 – SundanceTV today announced from the Television Critics’ Association (TCA) Press Tour a co-production partnership with Keshet International, which will also see it become the first broadcaster outside the UK to air the Fifty Fathoms, Keshet UK and BBC One family drama series “The A-Word.” Following a deal brokered by WME, Keshet International and AMC Networks, the six-episode, one-hour drama will premiere on SundanceTV at a date (to be announced) following the BBC premiere in spring 2016.
Dramatic, thought-provoking and lighthearted, “The A-Word” captures an authentic portrait of a contemporary family after their young son is diagnosed with autism. The series tracks the lives of 5-year-old Joe (Max Vento); Joe’s parents, Paul (Lee Ingleby, “Our Zoo,” “Inspector George Gently”) and Alison (Morven Christie, “Grantchester”), who struggle with parenting philosophies; his aunt and uncle, Nicola (Vinette Robinson, “Sherlock”) and Steve (Greg McHugh, “Fresh Meat”), who are working through unfaithfulness in their marriage; and his grandfather, Maurice (Chris Eccleston, “The Leftovers,” “Fortitude”), a recent widower and the owner of the family brewery.
“‘The A-Word’ is exactly the kind of intimate, unique and emotionally impactful story we want to showcase on SundanceTV,” said Joel Stillerman, president of original programming and development for AMC and SundanceTV. “It’s hopeful, honest and ultimately about the power of family, and the range of issues that families can face together, from autism to aging to adultery. We can’t wait to share it with our growing universe of SundanceTV viewers.”
“The A-Word” is based on the Israeli Keshet and July August Productions drama series, “Yellow Peppers,” created and written by Keren Margalit, who is also executive producer on the UK series.
The English language version is written by multiple BAFTA winner and Golden Globe® nominee Peter Bowker (“Marvellous,” “Blackpool”), directed by Oscar® nominee and BAFTA winner Peter Cattaneo (The Full Monty, “Rev”), Dominic Leclerc (“Shameless”) and Susan Tully (“Good Cop”). The series is a Fifty Fathoms (“Fortitude”) and Keshet UK co-production for BBC One and is executive produced for Fifty Fathoms by Patrick Spence, Peter Bowker and Jenny Frayn, by Sara Johnson and Avi Nir for Keshet and by Lucy Richer for BBC One. Marcus Wilson (“Doctor Who,” “Life on Mars”) is a producer.
“The A-Word” joins SundanceTV’s 2016 slate of scripted dramas, which will also include season four of Peabody Award-winning “Rectify”; “Hap and Leonard” based on the Joe Lansdale novels and featuring James Purefoy, Michael Kenneth Williams and Christina Hendricks; “The Last Panthers,” a co-production with Sky Atlantic and CANAL+ starring Samantha Morton and John Hurt; “Cleverman” from Australia co-produced with Red Arrow International; and “Rebellion,” an Irish mini-series co-produced with Zodiak Rights, Touchpaper TV and RTÉ.
Since its launch in 1996, SundanceTV has remained true to founder Robert Redford’s mission to celebrate creativity and distinctive storytelling through unique voices and narratives found in the best independent films. From delivering critically acclaimed Emmy®, Golden Globe® and Peabody Award-winning television featuring some of the world’s most talented creators and performers, to showcasing some of the most compelling and iconic films across genres and generations, SundanceTV is a smart and thought-provoking entertainment destination. SundanceTV is owned and operated by AMC Networks Inc.; its sister networks include AMC, IFC, BBC America and WE tv. SundanceTV is available across all platforms, including on-air, online at www.sundance.tv, on demand and mobile.
About Keshet International
Keshet International is Keshet Media Group’s global distribution and production arm. Headed by CEO Alon Shtruzman, it includes Keshet’s local production outposts (Keshet UK, Keshet Australia, Keshet Studios and Keshet DCP in the US) as well as its global distribution arm. KI’s catalogue consists of over 70 tried and tested properties that appeal to audiences worldwide, spanning all genres. Highlights include hit drama Prisoners of War, the original Israeli version of prime time Emmy® winner Homeland; hit interactive talent show RISING STAR; International Emmy® nominated docu-reality format Dear Neighbors, Help our Daughter Find Love; talent show MASTER CLASS; cross platform format 50 Things You Have to Know; reality dating format Girlfri3nds; game show The Vault; and ‘buddy comedy’ Traffic Light, winner of an International Emmy Award.
About Fifty Fathoms
Fifty Fathoms was set up in 2010, and sits under the umbrella of Endemol Shine. The company is run by Patrick Spence (MD) and Katie Swinden (Creative Director).
Productions so far include MARVELLOUS, Pete Bowker’s 90′ film for BBC2 which transmitted 2014, starring Toby Jones, directed by Julian Farino (Winner, Best Single Film, Best Director and Best Supporting Actress, Bafta; Winner Best Single Film, Best Actor and Best Actress, Golden Nymph / Monte Carlo; Best Writer, RTS; Best Film and Best Actor, BPG; Best Film, Writers Guild Awards and FIPA); and FORTITUDE, Simon Donald’s 12 part thriller set in the Arctic Circle for Sky Atlantic and Pivot, starring Stanley Tucci, Michael Gambon, Sofie Grabol, Richard Dormer and Chris Eccelston, which was Sky Atlantic’s most successful commission to date.
Next up alongside THE A WORD are FORTITUDE II, currently in production; and an UNTITLED 10 x 60′ series for NBC and Sky Atlantic, created and written by the Academy Award winning writer Graham Moore (Imitation Game).
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