‘Sinatra The Musical’ to Premiere at Birmingham Rep – Global Bulletin
The U.K.’s Birmingham Rep will co-produce “Sinatra The Musical,” the first official musical based on the life and career of Frank Sinatra, with Michele Anthony, Bruce Resnikoff and Scott Landis for Universal Music Group Theatrical, and Tina Sinatra and Charles Pignone on behalf of Frank Sinatra Enterprises.
The team behind the musical includes two-time Tony-winning writer Joe DiPietro (“What’s New Pussycat?”) and Olivier-winning and three-time Tony-winning director and choreographer, Kathleen Marshall (“Anything Goes”).
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The musical begins on New Year’s Eve, 1942, where a skinny 27-year-old Italian American singer is about to step onto the stage of New York’s Paramount Theatre and give a performance that will change music history. As Frank Sinatra’s career suddenly skyrockets, he struggles with balancing the love of his wife, Nancy, against the demands and temptations of being the most popular singer in America. But when he begins an affair with movie goddess Ava Gardner, his records stop selling and the press turns against him, sending his career into a tailspin. Driven by his devotion to his family, Sinatra stages the greatest comeback in showbiz history.
“Sinatra The Musical” will premiere at Birmingham Rep on Sept. 23 and run through Oct. 28. The show’s debut in Birmingham coincides with the 70th anniversary of Sinatra’s 1953 U.K. tour, which saw him perform in the city.
ITV Studios has revealed a raft of sales to a consortium of five major Nordic public broadcasters: SVT in Sweden, NRK in Norway, YLE in Finland, DR in Denmark and RUV in Iceland. The consortium has acquired modern relationship drama “You & Me,” starring Harry Lawtey (“Industry”), Jessica Barden (“The End of the F***ing World”) and Sophia Brown (“The Witcher: Blood Origin”), produced by Happy Prince, directed by BAFTA-winner Tom Vaughan (“Doctor Foster”) and executive produced by Russell T. Davies (“It’s A Sin”).
The consortium has also acquired World Productions’ drama “Fifteen-Love,” set in the elite world of Grand Slam tennis, starring Aiden Turner and Ella Lily Hyland, created and written by Hania Elkington (“The Innocents”) and directed by Eva Riley (“Perfect Ten”) and Toby MacDonald (“Ragdoll”).
The deal also includes the World Productions medical thriller series “Malpractice,” directed by BAFTA nominated Philip Barantini (“Boiling Point”) and written by former NHS doctor Grace Ofori-Attah. “Nolly,” the drama from Davies, starring Helena Bonham-Carter and produced by Nicola Shindler’s Quay Street Productions has also been acquired.
Additional shows include World Productions’ true crime-drama “The Hunt For Raoul Moat,” starring Lee Ingleby and written by “Anne” screenwriter Kevin Sampson and the Mammoth Screen and Masterpiece co-production, “Tom Jones,” the mini-series reimagining Henry Fielding’s classic novel. From Jeff Pope’s ITV Studios label, two dramas based on true stories, “The Walk-In,” starring Stephen Graham, and “Four Lives,” the story of the families of four young gay men who lost their lives to a killer, starring Stephen Merchant, are also part of the deal.
Veteran communications and marketing executive Gregory Ho has joined as a senior advisor to Blintn, a South Korean tech venture representing a premium database for the media industry. Singapore-based Ho has spent the past nine years with Warner Bros. Discovery in Hong Kong and Singapore in a corporate capacity, as well as on brands such as CNN, Cartoon Network and HBO. He previously had a long spell with Sony Pictures – which included senior roles overseeing marketing, communications, sales and operations for its networks in Asia – and began his career with positions at CNBC and Mediacorp Singapore.
Headed by Peter Choe, Blintn aims to amass comprehensive details for every listing in its database of IP, film and TV content. It is paired with a powerful recommendation engine to enable better discovery and help users search for the next big hit.
Blintn also operates a content investment arm, Blintn+ which invests in select projects across Asia. Last year it added a slate of Korean drama series from highly acclaimed producers with production scheduled to commence in 2023.
The U.K.’s STV Studios (Channel 4’s “Screw” has acquired television rights for Natali Simmonds’ debut thriller novel, “Good Girls Die Last,” from Emily Hayward Whitlock at The Artists Partnership working in association with Amanda Preston at LBA Literary Agency.
The novel, which will be published by Headline in June, is a comic, feminist thriller, telling the story of Em who, on the day of a record-breaking heatwave, is in a race against the clock to escape a gridlocked London while a serial killer stalks the streets.
“Good Girls Die Last” will be developed by STV Studios’ head of drama development, Claire Armspach and creative director of drama, Sarah Brown.
Cait FitzSimons, who secured a new five-year contract with Channel 5 earlier this year, will step down as editor of 5 News later this year. FitzSimons, who has been the editor since February 2018, is one of the longest serving editors of the program. She has worked at 5 News for the past nine years and began her career on the program as a news assistant after its launch by ITN in 1997. She oversaw the re-launch and expansion of 5 News, which became an hour-long bulletin in November 2021. 2022 was the program’s most awarded year ever, seeing the team win two Medical Journalism Association awards and a Society of Editors Award.
Cinema chain Vue International group has promoted Otto Turton from group director – content, pricing and sales, to chief commercial officer, reporting into group managing director and deputy CEO Steve Knibbs. Turton will oversee content, sales, pricing, marketing, digital and PR.
Ramneet Bassi has been promoted to chief strategy officer from group director – strategy & analytics, reporting into CFO Alison Cornwell. Bassi will oversee a number of projects and priorities, including operational and commercial activity.
Netflix has released a trailer for “Caught Out,” a feature documentary that exposes a match fixing scandal that rocked the world of international cricket. The film looks at the trajectory of cricket in India and explores how the cricketing fraternity fought back from the scandal. It is directed by Supriya Sobti Gupta and produced by Megha Mathur for Passion Pictures in association with MOW Productions.
“Caught Out” streams from March 17. Watch the trailer here:
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