In today’s Global Bulletin, BBC and SundanceTV announce the third and final season of “The Split,” Sky and XYZ Films prepare to shoot “Book of Love” and VIS Distribution adds 750 hours of content following its acquisition of Israel’s Ananey Studios.
BBC One and SundanceTV have ordered a third and final season of Sister’s “The Split,” created by BAFTA and International Emmy-winning writer Abi Morgan and produced by Jane Featherstone (“Chernobyl”), Lucy Dyke (“Black Mirror”) and Lucy Richer (“Small Axe”), with Dee Koppang O’Leary (“Bridgerton,” “The Crown”) boarding as lead director.
More from Variety
Unspooling in London’s high-end divorce circuit, “The Split” follows the lives of the Defoe sisters, Hannah, Nina and Rose, and their imposing mother Ruth. Season two ended with divorce lawyer Hannah’s own marriage in tatters and the couple negotiating the terms of their own split. As the dust seems to be settling, a new revelation comes to light, and the balances are tipped.
“In the final season of this bittersweet trilogy, Hannah faces the heartbreak of her own divorce, and the fight to save her family and her marriage,” Morgan teased. “Siblings clash, past mistakes are exposed, and hearts are broken as Noble Hale and Defoe notches up more billable hours in the divorce capital of the world.”
“As ever, Abi Morgan’s incredible writing sparkles with truth and honesty, wit and heartbreak. It is fantastic to be back with the Defoes, with Hannah and Nathan facing their biggest challenge yet – how to survive the breakup of their marriage, and navigate their own divorce,” added Richer.
Season 2 of the popular divorce court drama averaged more than 6 million linear viewers and 19 million streams, making it the third most watched drama on BBC iPlayer last year. “The Split” is produced by Sister for BBC One with co-producers Little Chick and SundanceTV, who broadcast and stream – on Sundance Now – in the U.S. Casting for Season 3 is ongoing, with filming planned for later this year.
Sky and XYZ Films, in association with BuzzFeed Studios and North of Watford Studios, are set to begin production on the new Sky Original romantic comedy “Book of Love” in March.
Starring Sam Clafin (“Peaky Blinders”) and Veronica Echegui (“Fortitude”), “Book of Love” turns Henry, a British author whose latest book bombs, but is surprised to find it a breakout hit in Mexico. Asked to go on a book tour in the Central American country, Henry is shocked to learn that Maria, responsible for the Spanish-language version, has rewritten his drab pros as an erotic romance novel.
Analeine Cal Y Mayor (“Treading Water”) directs the screenplay penned by Bafta and Emmy-winner David Quantick (“Veep”). Michael Knowles of North of Watford Films, Naysun Alae-Carew from Blazing Griffin, Allan Niblo from Vertigo Films, Nick Spicer and Maxime Cottray from XYZ Films and Richard Alan Reid from BuzzFeed Studios are producing.
Following its April 2020 announcement that it would be acquiring leading Israeli company Ananey Studios, ViacomCBS International Studios (VIS) Distribution has now added more than 750 hours of content to its sales catalog. Spanning a wide array of genres for pre-school, kid, teen and family audiences.
Titles now sold by VIS include recently launched kids’ comedy “Unsupervised,” about four spoiled siblings left home along; teen adventure series “Rising,” set at a training and recruitment center for kids in 1946, two years before the State of Israel was founded; and “The Hood,” a teen drama set in a low-income neighborhood in a wealthy Israeli district.
Ananey Communications owns and operates six pay TV channels in Israel and managers and operates several ViacomCBS channels including MTV, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon.
Netflix Spain has begun casting for its first original reality TV program “Insiders,” produced by iZen and set to premiere later this year.
Details of just how the series will test its challengers is still a well-kept secret, but iZen and Netflix promise an original format in which any adult who “wants to experience something totally new” is welcome to apply. “Don’t try to guess,” the application reads, emphasizing that no details will be shared with contestants until they are on set.
iZen is one of Spain’s largest independent production companies with more than 25 years of experience and 1,500 hours of content produced annually. Key recent titles include Amazon Prime Video’s period epic “El Cid” and TVG’s popular daytime talk program “Quen anda aí?”
London’s Can’t Stop Media has acquired global distribution rights to French singing program format “Mystery Duets,” premiering on TF1 Feb. 26 as “Duos Mystères.”
Produced by DMLSTV, backers of another Can’t Stop Media-distributed singing competition in “The Secret Song,” “Mystery Duets” will pair famous singers and celebrities to perform a duet, without knowing their assigned partner until they perform the song live.
Can’t Stop Media has already agreed on development deals in 12 countries and struck a multi-territory deal with ITV Studios who picked up the format rights for the U.S., U.K., Germany, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Australia and Israel. Vincent TV is developing a local version for Netherlands and Flemish-speaking Belgium, Blu Yazmine for Italy and MTV3 for Finland.
Best of Variety