BBC Studios Expands “Bluey” Global Licensing Program

BBC Studios Expands “Bluey” Global Licensing Program
Season three of “Bluey” debuted on ABC TV in Australia in November 2021 and is set to be released globally on Disney platforms later this year.
[via press release from BBC]
BBC Studios expands Bluey global licensing program

Bluey, the Emmy(R) Award-winning sensation that has been winning over preschoolers and families worldwide, is expanding its licensing program with new partners.

Ten new partners and renewal US & Canada licensing deals

New Latin America licensing agents appointed for Brazil, South and Central America

Five new UK licensing deals announced

Licensing agents appointed for Israel as 13 new EMEA licensing deals unveiled including Ravensburger (France, Italy and Nordics) and a pan-European deal with HTI Toys (inc. UK)

These licensing agreements follow closely on the heels of the announcement of BBC Studios’ new global partnership with Hasbro for co-branded Monopoly Jr. and Trouble games along with Play-Doh. VTech has also announced details of their Bluey products which are set to go on sale this year in the US, Canada, Australia and UK with New Zealand and France to follow.

Widely lauded by parents and press alike for its heartfelt and funny portrayal of family life and celebration of play, the series follows Bluey, a 6-year-old Blue Heeler dog, who loves to play and turns everyday family life into extraordinary adventures that unfold in unpredictable and hilarious ways, bringing her family – including younger sister Bingo and parents Bandit and Chilli – as well as friends and community into her world of fun and discovery.

Season three of Bluey debuted on ABC TV in Australia in November 2021 and is set to be released globally on Disney platforms later this year.

US and Canada

Announced today, BBC Studios has shared new details on deals with Ball Bounce & Sport inc. dba Hedstrom, Berkshire Fashions, Centric Beauty, Daytime Enterprises, Disguise, Fathead, Heys International, Horizon Group, Mad Engine and Party City Holdings inc. for a range of new products spanning multiple key categories. From apparel and arts & crafts to party supplies, and more, the Bluey introductions will begin rolling out to major retailers across the US and Canada this spring.

Suzy Raia, SVP Consumer Products and Business Development, BBC Studios Americas, said: “Love for Bluey continues to soar all across the globe, and we’re excited to be teaming up with each of these category-leading companies to provide many new ways for preschoolers and their families to experience the fun and imaginative adventures that make the series such a standout.

“Consumer demand for Bluey products is very strong and we look forward to working with these partners to develop offerings that will enhance fans’ connection to the brand every day.”

New Bluey partners to introduce product this year include:

Ball, Bounce & Sport inc. dba Hedstrom – playballs, hoppers, sport ball, over the door hoop and bowling sets (US)

Berkshire Fashions – headwear, cold weather and rain accessories etc. (US)

Centric Beauty – bath and cosmetics (US)

Daytime Enterprises – costume character appearances to be led by Nelvana (Canada)

Disguise – new costumes and accessories following multi-year renewal agreement (US)

Fathead – wall graphics, standees, peel & stick wallpaper and decals etc. (US)

Heys International – bags & luggage, backpacks and lunch bags etc. (Canada)

Horizon Group – arts & crafts (US)

Mad Engine – apparel and accessories (US); apparel, sleepwear, underwear, hosiery and winter accessories, via Nelvana (Canada)

Party City Holdings inc. – party goods, balloons, Halloween costumes and accessories (US & Canada – via Nelvana in Canada)

In the US, Bluey has been a runaway hit since its 2019 debut. The standout series was Disney Junior’s #1 ratings driver with kids 2-5 in 20211. It also ranked as the #1 most-watched TV series in 2Q21 and a top 3 show every quarter in 20212. In addition, Bluey owned two of the top 10 cable telecasts of 2021 with kids 2-53.

In Canada, Bluey continues to rank #1 on Disney Junior with children 2-11 and kids 2-5 on La Chaine’s Disney Junior (Canadian French language channel). Bluey was also the #2 program with children 2-5 on Disney Junior and kids 2-5 on Disney Channel’s Junior block4.

Latin America

To further extend the footprint of the global hit through the region, BBC Studios appointed as its licensing agents Panaderia for Mexico, Lotus Global for Brazil and Tycoon for South and Central America (excluding Mexico and Brazil). 

In Mexico, the Bluey licensing program keeps expanding into other categories following Bandai’s very successful toy launch last year. Starting this June and extending into the fall, new licensed assortments ranging from party goods to apparel and publishing will launch in Mexico, with the following partners: Granmark, Ruz, Stor, Union Kids, Novelty Corp and Penguin Random House.

The Bluey toys produced by global master toy licensee Moose Toys are distributed locally by Candide in Brazil and are expected to launch in Q3 2022. Apparel, accessories, publishing and party items will follow to market in time for Christmas. Later this year, even more fun and engaging Bluey products will be distributed locally by Imexporta in Chile and Peru; Caffaro in Argentina and Boing Toys in Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, Uruguay, Central America and the Caribbean islands.

Australia and New Zealand

In the series’ homeland, Australia, the well-established Bluey brand is booming, and continues to add to an impressive portfolio of partners across ANZ. 2022 kicked off with an incredible ‘Only On Airbnb’ partner experience which saw the iconic Heeler home recreated ‘for real life’ in Brisbane (generating 60 million+ social impressions), and was followed up with announcements that Bluey is the first ever Australian brand to partner with Colgate, won Preschool License of the Year at the Australian Toy Awards for the third year running, and that the Aussie-made stage show would be touring the U.S. following a wildly successful Australian run – with more major announcements to come soon in the FMCG space. 

In Australia, Bluey remains the number one kids show on broadcast television and is the most-watched series ever on ABC iview. With season three already airing in Australia, the show has performed 2.3x above timeslot average audience (total audience) and the new episodes achieved 14 of the top 20 broadcasts on free-to-air TV in 2021. Just this week, it was announced that 11 more Series 3 episodes will air in Australia from mid-June.

“Australia is the home of Bluey and fans here are absolutely buzzing about the new June episodes,” said Kate O’Connor, Head of Licensing and Brands, BBC Studios ANZ. “The second half of 2022 will bring more exciting Bluey news that we can’t wait to surprise our fans with!”


Bluey is hugely popular with audiences in the UK. It was the most-watched program on CBeebies for Q1 2022 with toys from both Moose Toys and Ravensburger making Bluey one of the hottest brands since its launch in shops last year and gaining the title of #1 new pre-school toy brand in 2021 according to NPD data. Earlier this year Crayola released products in the UK, with sales already exceeding expectations. Building on this success, BBC Studios are announcing new deals with 8th Wonder (wooden toys), Spin Master (wooden puzzles – extending their US range into the UK), Moonpig (cards and gifting), Drew Pearson (accessories) and an expanded deal with Ravensburger (details below in EMEA section).

“8th Wonder are delighted to be working with BBC Studios on such a prestigious property. The Bluey wooden toy range will be fun, educational and produced using FSC certified wood. All product and packaging will be designed with sustainability in mind. With over 25 years’ experience creating distinctive, innovative wooden toys we look forward to delivering an award-winning range through this fantastic brand,” said Louise Tyrer, Managing Director, 8th Wonder.

In addition, BBC Studios has just signed a new pan-European deal (inc. UK) with HTI Toys for large role play, cases, bubbles and outdoor toys.

Alison Downie, Global Licensing and Brand Director for HTI Group, said: “We are thrilled to be partnering with BBC Studios once again on another hugely popular preschool show. Bluey will be made very welcome here at HTI Toys and we are excited to develop a range of toys that complement Bluey’s love of play.”

Partners launching products in the UK this year include:

Character Options – Weebles and arts & crafts

Danilo – calendars, cards and gift stationery

H&A – health & beauty

MV Sports – wheeled toys

Stor – lunchboxes, bottles and tableware

William Lamb – footwear and bags


Bluey continues to grow its licensing program in EMEA and existing licensee Ravensburger has signed a new agreement with BBC Studios to cover France, Italy and Nordics and to expand its range of products in the UK including the introduction of proprietary games including Memory and Labyrinth.

“We are delighted to extend our UK and Ireland contract for Bluey to France, Italy and the Nordic markets and to extend our very long standing and excellent partnership with BBC Studios. We launched Bluey in the UK last autumn/winter and our puzzles were immediately best sellers in all the accounts where they are listed and that success continues to build. Bluey is a special property that young children and their parents adore. We look forward to further growth in the UK and Ireland and establishing the property in the new territories,” said Tim Hall, Managing Director, Ravensburger.

BBC Studios has also newly appointed Mediogen as licensing agents for Israel; joining CLM (South Africa), France tv distribution (France), Maurizio Distefano Licensing (Italy), Partner Plus (Greece) and Plus Licens (Nordics, Baltics and CEE).

New Bluey licensees in EMEA include:

Diramix – stickers, sticker albums and cards (Italy)

Dolfin – seasonal confectionery (Italy)

Dulcop – bubbles (Italy)

Educa Borras – wooden puzzles and arts & crafts (France)

Grabo – balloons (Italy)

Graffiti – back to school and stationery (Greece)

Halantex – home textiles (Italy)

HTI Toys – large role play, cases, bubble toys and outdoor toys (pan-Europe inc. UK)

Liniex – scooters and scooter accessories (Nordics)

Multiprint – stamps, stationery sets and colouring sets (Italy)

Ravensburger – puzzles and games inc. Memory and Labyrinth (France, Italy and Nordics)

Showagent – meet & greet (Nordics)

Skybrands – apparel and home (Nordics)

“Doctor Who” Gains Its Own Heartstopper as Yasmin Finney Joins Cast

“Doctor Who” Gains Its Own Heartstopper as Yasmin Finney Joins Cast
Finney has joined the cast of “Doctor Who” playing the character of Rose and is filming scenes that are due to air in 2023 to coincide with the show’s 60th anniversary.
[via press release from BBC]

Doctor Who gains its own heartstopper as Yasmin Finney joins cast

Currently captivating audiences with her performance as Elle Argent in Heartstoppers, Yasmin is receiving rave reviews across the globe.

Yasmin Finney has joined the cast of Doctor Who playing the character of Rose and is filming scenes that are due to air in 2023 to coincide with the show’s 60th anniversary. Currently captivating audiences with her performance as Elle Argent in Heartstopper, Yasmin is receiving rave reviews across the globe.

Speaking of joining Doctor Who Yasmin says: “If anyone would have told 8 year old Yasmin that one day she’d be part of this iconic show, I would have never in a million years believed them. This show has a place in so many people’s hearts, so to be seen as a trans actress by the legend himself Russell, has not only made my year, it’s made my life. I cannot wait to begin this journey and for you all to see how Rose blossoms. Get Ready.”

Russell T Davies, Showrunner adds: “Life on Doctor Who gets brighter and wilder, how can there be another Rose? You’ll find out in 2023, but it’s an absolute joy to welcome Yasmin to the Doctor Who set. We all fell in love with her in Heartstopper, one of those shows which changes the world – and now Yasmin can change the Whoniverse!”


They’re Back… David Tennant and Catherine Tate Return to “Doctor Who”

They’re Back… David Tennant and Catherine Tate Return to “Doctor Who”
One of the most loved pairings in “Doctor Who’s” history have reunited and are filming scenes that are due to air in 2023 to coincide with the show’s 60th anniversary celebrations.
[via press release from BBC]

They’re back… David Tennant and Catherine Tate return to Doctor Who

The big question is, just what brings the Doctor and Donna back together?

One of the most loved pairings in Doctor Who’s history have reunited and are filming scenes that are due to air in 2023 to coincide with the show’s 60th anniversary celebrations.

The Doctor and Donna parted ways when the Doctor had to wipe Donna’s memory, making her forget him, in order to save her life. He left her family with a warning: if ever she remembers, she will die. But with the two coming face to face once more, the big question is, just what brings the Doctor and Donna back together?

Russell T Davies, Showrunner says: “They’re back! And it looks impossible – first, we announce a new Doctor, and then an old Doctor, along with the wonderful Donna, what on earth is happening? Maybe this is a missing story. Or a parallel world. Or a dream, or a trick, or a flashback. The only thing I can confirm is that it’s going to be spectacular, as two of our greatest stars reunite for the battle of a lifetime.”

In his last ever episode, David’s critically acclaimed portrayal of the Doctor famously said “I don’t want to go… ” Well it seems he – and fans across the globe – have got what they wanted as the iconic duo are on their way back…


The Future Is Here – The New Doctor Is Revealed

The Future Is Here – The New Doctor Is Revealed
The BBC has today announced Ncuti Gatwa is the new Doctor set to take charge of the TARDIS.
[via press release from BBC]

The Future is Here – the new Doctor is revealed

The BBC has today announced Ncuti Gatwa is the new Doctor set to take charge of the TARDIS.

There aren’t quite the words to describe how I’m feeling. A mix of deeply honoured, beyond excited and of course a little bit scared. Unlike the Doctor, I may only have one heart, but I am giving it all to this show.” – Ncuti Gatwa

Star of stage and screen Ncuti is best known for his critically acclaimed performance in Sex Education as the iconic Eric Effiong, for which he was awarded Best Actor Award at the Scottish BAFTAs in 2020 as well as numerous nominations, including Best Male Performance in a comedy programme at this year’s BAFTAs.

Speaking of his new role, Ncuti says: “There aren’t quite the words to describe how I’m feeling. A mix of deeply honoured, beyond excited and of course a little bit scared. This role and show means so much to so many around the world, including myself, and each one of my incredibly talented predecessors has handled that unique responsibility and privilege with the utmost care. I will endeavour my utmost to do the same.

“Russell T Davies is almost as iconic as the Doctor himself and being able to work with him is a dream come true. His writing is dynamic, exciting, incredibly intelligent and fizzing with danger. An actor’s metaphorical playground. The entire team has been so welcoming and truly give their hearts to the show. And so as much as it’s daunting, I’m aware I’m joining a really supportive family. Unlike the Doctor, I may only have one heart but I am giving it all to this show.”

Russell T Davies, Showrunner, adds: “The future is here and it’s Ncuti! Sometimes talent walks through the door and it’s so bright and bold and brilliant, I just stand back in awe and thank my lucky stars. Ncuti dazzled us, seized hold of the Doctor and owned those TARDIS keys in seconds. It’s an honour to work with him, and a hoot, I can’t wait to get started. I’m sure you’re dying to know more, but we’re rationing ourselves for now, with the wonderful Jodie’s epic finale yet to come. But I promise you, 2023 will be spectacular!”

Charlotte Moore, Chief Content Officer, says:”Ncuti has an incredible dynamism, he’s a striking and fearless young actor whose talent and energy will set the world alight and take Doctor Who on extraordinary adventures under Russell T Davies’ new era.”

Further details will be announced in due course.


FX and BBC Set Cast for “Great Expectations” Limited Series

FX and BBC Set Cast for “Great Expectations” Limited Series
The stellar cast will feature Olivia Colman in the lead role of “Miss Havisham” and Fionn Whitehead as “Pip” alongside Ashley Thomas, Johnny Harris, Shalom Brune-Franklin, Hayley Squires, Owen McDonnell, Trystan Gravelle and Matt Berry.
[via press release from FX]
FX and BBC Set Cast for “Great Expectations” Limited Series

The Stellar Cast Will Feature Olivia Colman as “Miss Havisham” and Fionn Whitehead as “Pip” Alongside Ashley Thomas, Johnny Harris, Shalom Brune-Franklin, Hayley Squires, Owen McDonnell, Trystan Gravelle and Matt Berry

Steven Knight’s Adaptation of Charles Dickens’ Classic for FX and BBC

LOS ANGELES, February 17, 2022 – FX and BBC have set the cast for Great Expectations, the six-part limited series adaptation of Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations from Academy Award(R) nominee and BAFTA Award winning writer Steven Knight. The stellar cast will feature Olivia Colman in the lead role of “Miss Havisham” and Fionn Whitehead as “Pip” alongside Ashley Thomas, Johnny Harris, Shalom Brune-Franklin, Hayley Squires, Owen McDonnell, Trystan Gravelle and Matt Berry.

Great Expectations is the coming-of-age story of an orphan nicknamed “Pip.” Dickens first released it in a series of weekly chapters beginning in December 1860 before it was subsequently published as a novel.

Knight will write and executive produce Great Expectations, which will also be executive produced by Tom Hardy, Ridley Scott, Dean Baker, David W. Zucker, Kate Crowe and Mona Qureshi for the BBC – the team behind A Christmas Carol. Great Expectations will be produced by FX Productions in association with the BBC, Scott Free and Hardy Son & Baker. Lucy Forbes (The End of the F***ing World, In My Skin, This is Going to Hurt) will serve as lead director.

Great Expectations is the second Dickens adaptation penned by Knight, following the hit limited series A Christmas Carol. Great Expectations and A Christmas Carol are the first two in a series of adaptations of Dickens’ novels commissioned by Piers Wenger, Director of Drama and Charlotte Moore, Chief Content Officer at the BBC and FX. The BBC and FX also produced the acclaimed drama series Taboo, starring Tom Hardy, written by Steven Knight and produced by Knight, Hardy, Chips Hardy, Ridley Scott, Dean Baker and Kate Crowe.

Olivia Colman – “Miss Havisham”

Olivia Colman was most recently seen in Maggie Gyllenhaal’s directorial debut, The Lost Daughter, opposite Dakota Johnson, Jessie Buckley and Peter Saarsgard. The film is based on the novel of the same name by best-selling author Elena Ferrante, which follows a college professor (Colman) who confronts her unsettling past after meeting a woman (Johnson) and her young daughter while on vacation in Italy. For this role, Colman received nominations for an Academy Award, Golden Globe, SAG Award and Critics Choice Award, and won the Gotham Award in the category of Outstanding Lead Performance in 2021.

Colman will next be seen in Emer Reynolds’ comedy Joyride opposite Charlie Reid. The film follows “Joy” (Colman), a discontented mother who ends up accidentally going on a road trip with “Mully” (Reid) a 12-year-old who steals the taxi she’s unknowingly asleep in, leading to an unlikely friendship. Vertigo Releasing is slated to debut the film in the U.K. and Ireland later this year.

Next year, Colman will be in Paul King’s Wonka alongside Timothée Chalamet and Sally Hawkins. Set as a prequel to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, it follows the origin story of Willy Wonka based on characters created by Roald Dahl. Warner Bros is slated to release the film March 17, 2023.

Colman is currently in production on Sam Mendes’ film, Empire of Light, opposite Micheal Ward. The film is a love story set in and around a beautiful old cinema on the South Coast of England in the 1980s. It will be the first solo original screenplay written by Mendes. Searchlight Pictures is attached to distribute the film.

Last year, Colman was seen starring in the HBO/SKY limited series, Landscapers, opposite David Thewlis. The series, created and written by screenwriter Ed Sinclair, was inspired by real-life events, telling the story of a couple in the northern English city of Nottingham who become the focus of an investigation when two dead bodies are discovered in a back garden. Colman and Sinclair’s South of the River Pictures co-produced the series.

Also in 2021, Colman won an Emmy Award in the category of Outstanding Lead Actress in A Drama Series for her role as Queen Elizabeth II in Season 4 of the critically acclaimed Netflix Original series, The Crown, opposite Tobias Menzies and Helena Bonham Carter. This is a reprisal of her role from Season 3, for which she won a Golden Globe Award in the category of Best Performance by an Actress in a Drama Television Series in 2019. Across both seasons, she also received nominations for a BAFTA, SAG and Critics Choice Awards.

Most notably, Colman won the 2019 Academy Award in the category of Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role as Queen Anne in Yorgos Lanthimos’s critically acclaimed The Favourite, opposite Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz. The same year she also won the Golden Globe for the category of Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture (Musical or Comedy); the BAFTA award in the category of Best Leading Actress; British Independent Film Award in the category of Best Actress, the Critics’ Choice award in the category Best Actress in a Comedy; and the Volpi Cup for Best Actress at the 2018 Venice Film Festival. It marked her second collaboration with Lanthimos following her role in his dystopian romantic comedy, The Lobster, for which Colman received a British Independent Film Award in the category of Best Supporting Actress, and a nomination for an Evening Standard British Film Award for Best Comedy Performance. Colman was also nominated for the 2021 Academy Award, Golden Globe, SAG and Critics Choice Award for her acclaimed performance in Florian Zeller’s The Father, a feature film adaptation of Zeller’s own award-winning stage play of the same name.

In 2011/2012 Colman won the Best Actress prize at the British Independent Film Awards, Evening Standard British Film Awards, Critics Circle Awards and Empire Awards for her brilliant performance in Paddy Considine’s feature directorial debut Tyrannosaur, opposite Peter Mullan and Eddie Marsan. The film also won the World Cinema Special Jury Prize for Breakout Performance at the Sundance international Festival the same year.

Other film credits include: Eva Husson’s Mothering Sunday; Will Sharpe’s The Electrical Life of Louis Wain; Sarah Smith, Jean-Philippe Vine and Octavio E. Rodriguez Ron’s Gone Wrong; Michael Rianda and Jeff Rowe’s The Mitchells vs the Machines; Britt Poulton and Dan Madison Savage’s thriller Them That Follow; Kenneth Branagh’s Murder On The Orient Express; Carol Thatcher opposite Meryl Streep in Phyllida Lloyd’s The Iron Lady; Rufus Norris’ London Road, Roger Michell’s Hyde Park On Hudson; Steven Knight’s Locke; James Griffiths’ Cuban Fury; and Edgar Wright’s Hot Fuzz.

On television, Colman was previously seen in the BBC/Amazon’s award-winning Fleabag in her role as “Godmother” for which she garnered an Emmy nomination in 2019 for Best Supporting Actress for her work in the final season of the series and previously, a Television BAFTA nomination in the category of Best Female Performance in a Comedy Programme in 2017.

Also on the small screen, Colman won a Golden Globe in the category of Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television, for her portrayal of ‘Angela Burr’ in the BBC/AMC’s The Night Manager. Prior to that, she also won a Television BAFTA for Leading Actress in 2014 for her role as ‘DS Ellie Miller’ in the acclaimed ITV series Broadchurch, which ran for three seasons. In 2013, Colman was the double award-winner at the Television BAFTA’s, winning Female Performance in a Comedy Programme for her reoccurring role in BBC’s Twenty Twelve, as well as Best Supporting Actress for her role in BBC’s Accused. Colman has also received a Television BAFTA nomination in the category of Best Female Performance in a Comedy Programme in 2015 for her role as “Alex Smallbone” in BBC’s Rev.

Other television credits include Les Misérables (PBS/BBC Studios); Watership Down (Netflix); Flowers (Channel 4); The Thirteenth Tale (BBC); Mr. Sloane (Sky Atlantic); The Secrets (BBC); The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher II (ITV1); Peep Show (Channel 4); Exile (BBC); and Greenwing (Channel 4).

On stage, Colman’s credits include Long Day’s Journey into Night (Lyric Theatre), England People Very Nice (National Theatre), Hayfever (Noel Coward Theatre) and most recently Lucy Kirkwood’s Mosquitoes at the National Theatre, directed by Rufus Norris, for which she won Best Actress in the 2018 Whatsonstage Awards.

Colman has been awarded the title of Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire for her services to drama, and a BFI Fellowship.

Colman is represented by ICM in the U.S. and United Agents in the U.K.

Fionn Whitehead – “Pip”

Fionn Whitehead is well known for playing the lead in both the multi award winning Dunkirk and the Emmy Award winning Bandersnatch.

Other credits include leading roles in Richard Eyre’s The Children Act opposite Emma Thompson and Stanley Tucci and Port Authority which was Executive Produced by Martin Scorsese and premiered in competition at Cannes.

Whitehead can currently be seen in Alex McAulay’s debut Don’t Tell a Soul and Neil Burger’s Voyagers. We will see him next in Roger Michell’s The Duke opposite Helen Mirren and Jim Broadbent and in Frances O’Connor’s Emily opposite Emma Mackey and Oliver Jackson-Cohen.

Whitehead is represented by Curtis Brown Group, United Talent Agency and Goodman, Genow, Schenkman, Smelkinson & Christopher

Ashley Thomas – “Jaggers”

Ashley Thomas is a British actor who is arguably best known for his portrayal of “Henry Emory” in the number one Amazon Prime series Them. Thomas featured as a lead role – the patriarch of a black family who move to an all-white Los Angeles neighbourhood where malevolent forces threaten to destroy them. The Guardian cited “Magnificent performance from Thomas.”

Thomas starred as Jermaine in the popular Netflix drama Top Boy, opposite Ashley Walters. Thomas is also noted for his standout performance in the critically acclaimed HBO series The Night Of alongside Riz Ahmed, Michael K. Williams and John Turturro. In 2012, Ashley was selected to feature in Screen International’s ‘Stars of Tomorrow’.

Thomas landed his first acting role in 2010 as “Rager” in the British flick Shank, an independent action film set in a dystopian London. He was part of an ensemble cast in Cockneys vs Zombies, taking up the role of “Mental Mickey.” Metro described Thomas’ performance as “brilliant”. Thomas’ first television role came in 2011 in the Emmy Award-winning series Black Mirror by Charlie Brooker as “Judge Wraith” in the episode “Fifteen Million Merits”. Other cast members included Daniel Kaluuya and Rupert Everett. The Guardian citing “All the performances are good – especially Ashley Thomas as Judge Wraith”.

Thomas’ next project was feature film My Brother the Devil which received critical acclaim, winning awards at both the Sundance Film Festival and Berlin Film Festival. Thomas starred in the Oscar winning Skin, which won the Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film in 2019.

Thomas’ further film credits include: Been So Long (2018), Kill Ben Lyk (2018), Brotherhood (2016) 100 Streets (2016), Dear My Shakespeare: Shakespeare Lives (2016), The Man Inside (2012), The Veteran (2011) and 4321 (2010). Thomas’ other notable TV credits include: 24: Legacy (FOX, 2017), NYPD Blue (ABC, 2019), Salvation (CBS, 2018), The Good Fight (CBS, 2018), Ice (AT&T, 2018), Beowulf (ITV, 2016) and The Interceptor (BBC, 2015).

Thomas is represented by ICM Partners and Independent Talent (UK).

Johnny Harris – “Magwitch”

Johnny Harris first burst onto our screens in 2006 in the highly acclaimed British film London to Brighton.

The film was voted into Time Out Magazine’s ‘100 Greatest British Films of All Time’ and celebrated British director Shane Meadows said of Harris’ performance in the film: “It’s an incredibly bold and massively powerful performance, the best I’ve seen on celluloid for a long time.”

He went on to star in Shane Meadows’ cult television series This Is England ’86 receiving BAFTA and Royal Television Society Award nominations for his performance.

He has since starred in film and TV hits including A Christmas Carol, Jawbone, The Salisbury Poisonings, Snow White and the Huntsman, Fortitude, Troy Fall of a City, Medici, This is England ’88-’90, Monsters: Dark Continent, From Darkness, Welcome to the Punch, and Jack Thorne’s BAFTA Award-winning TV show The Fades.

In 2017 Harris made his debut as a screenwriter with the highly acclaimed feature film Jawbone. Harris also starred in and co-produced the movie. He received a BAFTA Film Award nomination for Outstanding Debut, two BIFA Film Award nominations for his performance in the leading role, and a Writers Guild Award nomination for his screenplay.

Song-writing icon Paul Weller composed and recorded the soundtrack for Jawbone (his first) and in October 2018, Harris made his debut behind the camera, directing the video for Paul’s hit single Gravity.

Harris’ most recent work includes playing Franklin Scrooge in the BBC/FX adaptation of A Christmas Carol alongside Guy Pearce and Andy Serkis, exec-produced by Ridley Scott and Tom Hardy. He also played Charlie Rowley in the highly acclaimed BBC Drama The Salisbury Poisonings, based on the tragic real-life events of 2018. In 2022, he will star in an independent feature film A House in Jerusalem directed by Muayad Alayan and in Without Sin for ITV alongside Vicky McClure, directed by Al Mackay.

Harris is represented by Samira Higham.

Shalom Brune-Franklin – “Estella”

Shalom Brune-Franklin was born in London to her Mauritian mother and British/Thai father. She went on to train at Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, where she won the inaugural Chris Edmund Performing Arts Scholarship set up by Hugh Jackman for most outstanding performer.

Brune-Franklin has taken the industry by storm and is most known for her outstanding performances in Roadkill opposite Hugh Laurie, in Line of Duty which is one of the BBC’s most watched shows and Cursed for Netflix opposite Katherine Langford.

Brune-Franklin can currently be seen as the lead alongside Jamie Dornan in The Tourist for BBC and HBO.

Brune-Franklin is represented by Hamilton Hodell and Morrissey Management.

Hayley Squires – “Sara”

Hayley Squires just wrapped production on Ari Aster’s next film Disappointment Blvd for A24 opposite Joaquin Phoenix. She’s perhaps best known for her BAFTA-nominated performance in Ken Loach’s movie I, Daniel Blake, which won the Palme d’Or at Cannes in 2016 and earned Hayley a BAFTA nomination in the “Best Supporting Actress” category.

This past year alone she appeared in three different critically-acclaimed films: Harry Wootliff’s True Things (just premiered at Venice 2021), Will Sharpe’s The Electrical Life of Louis Wain opposite Benedict Cumberbatch (just premiered at Toronto 2021) and Ben Wheatley’s In the Earth (premiered at Sundance 2021). Other recent credits include the lead role of Channel 4/HBO Max’s limited series Adult Material (which earned her a BAFTA nomination in the “Best Leading Actress” category), Peter Strickland’s In Fabric, Ben Wheatley’s, Happy New Year Colin Burstead, Sean Durkin’s Southcliffe, SJ Clarkson’s Collateral and the 2018 West End run of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof with Sienna Miller and Jack O’Connell. She’ll next be seen in the Apple limited series The Essex Serpent, directed by Clio Barnard.

Squires is represented by Management 360 and B-Side Management

Owen McDonnell – “Joe”

Owen McDonnell’s television include Killing Eve Series 1, 2 & 3 (Sid Gentle/BBC America); Responsible Child (Kudos/BBC); Three Families (Studio Lambert/BBC); The Bay (ITV); Women On The Verge (RTE/UKTV); Paula (BBC); Dominion Creek (TG4); My Mother and Other Strangers (BBC/PBS); Silent Witness (BBC); Mount Pleasant (Sky); Single-Handed Series 1-4 (RTE/ITV); Spooks (BBC); Awakening (Studio Lambert/BBC); The Holiday (Halo Pictures); Death In Paradise (Red Planet Pictures/BBC).

McDonnel’s film credits include Conspiracy of Silence (Little Wing Films); Made in Belfast (KGB Films); Swung (Boudica Films/Sigma); The Gift (De Facto Films); Rewind; Teacht Abhaile (both Carbon Films); A Terrible Beauty (Tile Films); Saving the Titanic (PBS); A Year of Greater Love (Mammoth Screen); Wild Decembers (Touchpaper) and the upcoming Stranger With A Camera (Fizzblister Films) and Love & Gelato (Netflix).

His includes Manor (National Theatre); The Ferryman (West End/Gielgud Theatre); A Doll’s House, The Plough and the Stars, Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Towards the Somme, The Burial at Thebes, Big Maggie and Barbaric Comedies all at the Abbey/National Theatre of Ireland; Outside Mullingar (Bath Theatre Royal); Berlin Hannover Express (Hampstead Theatre); Greta Garbo Came to Donegal and Stones in his Pockets, both for the Tricycle Theatre; Talk of the Town (Landmark/Dublin Theatre Festival). Other theatre includes Translations; Wunderkind; Cruel and Tender; The Lieutenant of Inishmore, The Lonesome West.

McDonnell is represented by Lisa Richards Agency, London.

Trystan Gravelle – “Compeyson”

Trystan Gravelle is an actor whose work spans feature films, television, theatre and radio.

Television credits include Lord of the Rings, Quiz, Trying, A Discovery of Witches, Baptiste, The Terror, Gap Year, National Treausre, Brittania, Aliens, Utopia, Mr. Selfridge, The Assets and The Chosen.

Feature credits include Beast, Making Noise Quietly, One Chance, Anonymous, Stella Days, The Real American, Hamlet and A Way of Life.

Theater credits include The Frontline, The Birthday Party, 13, Light Shining in Buckinghamshire, Edgar and Annabelle, There is a War, An Enemy of the People, We The People, Love’s Labour’s Lost, The Winter’s Tale, Pericles, The Norman Conquests, An Oak Tree, The Changling, Honest, Leaves of Glass, Days of Significance and Macbeth.

Matt Berry – “Mr. Pumblechuck”

Matt Berry is a BAFTA award-winning actor, writer and musician. He was nominated for a Critics Choice Award for Best Actor in A Comedy Series for his work as “Lazlo Cravensworth” in FX’s What We Do In the Shadows. In the UK, he recently starred as “Detective Inspector Eli Rabbit” in Year of the Rabbit on Channel 4. In 2015, Berry won a BAFTA for his performance as “Steven Toast” in Toast of London on Channel 4, which he also co-created. The show went on to earn six British Comedy Awards nominations, winning Best New Comedy Program; the second season titled Toast of Tinseltown recently aired on BBC2.

He is a talented voice actor and musician, who recorded introductions for the 2012 London Olympic closing ceremonies and composed the music for AB/DC: A Rock Opera, Snuff Box and Toast of London. Berry has also released nine studio albums to much critical acclaim.

Berry is represented by CAA, MGMT Entertainment, and B-Side Management.

About FX

FX, a division of Disney General Entertainment, is a multiplatform brand that develops, produces, commissions and markets original programming for Hulu and the FX and FXX linear channels in the U.S., and Star+ in Latin America and Disney+ in all other international territories. The FX brand mark appears above the title across its entire slate of originals. Over the past two decades, FX has been responsible for some the most-critically acclaimed and award-winning shows on television. Some of the brand’s current and legacy titles include the dramas American Horror Story, American Crime Story, The Americans, Damages, Fargo, Justified, Nip/Tuck, Pose, Rescue Me, The Shield and Sons of Anarchy; the comedies Archer, Atlanta, Better Things, DAVE, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Reservation Dogs and What We Do in the Shadows; and a growing slate of docuseries and documentary films.

Filming Begins on Final Series of “Happy Valley,” as New and Returning Cast Are Announced

Filming Begins on Final Series of “Happy Valley,” as New and Returning Cast Are Announced
Sarah Lancashire returns to her iconic role of Sergeant Catherine Cawood for six new episodes, long discussed by Sally Wainwright and Sarah Lancashire as the final chapter of the “Happy Valley” story.
[via press release from BBC]
Filming begins on final series of “Happy Valley,” as new and returning cast are announced

Filming has begun in West Yorkshire on the third and final series of Sally Wainwright’s smash hit, multi-BAFTA award winning BBC drama Happy Valley. Sarah Lancashire returns to her iconic role of Sergeant Catherine Cawood for six new episodes, long discussed by Sally Wainwright and Sarah Lancashire as the final chapter of the Happy Valley story.

Happy Valley series three is made by Lookout Point for BBC One and iPlayer, in co-production with AMC Networks, the exclusive home for series three in the U.S. and Canada. BBC Studios is distributing the series internationally.

As previously announced, James Norton and Siobhan Finneran will also return for series three – as Catherine’s nemesis, the murderer and sex-offender Tommy Lee Royce, and Catherine’s sister, the recovering addict Clare Cartwright respectively.

Announced today, Con O’Neill will reprise his role as Clare’s recovering alcoholic boyfriend Neil Ackroyd. George Costigan will return as Nevison Gallagher, with Charlie Murphy as his daughter and Catherine’s police colleague Ann. They will be joined by other Happy Valley returning favourites including Derek Riddell as Richard Cawood, Karl Davies as Daniel Cawood, Susan Lynch as Alison Garrs, Rick Warden as Mike Taylor, Vincent Franklin as Andy Shepherd and Rhys Connah as Catherine’s grandson Ryan Cawood.

Amit Shah (The Other One, The Long Call), Mark Stanley (The Girl Before, White House Farm) and Mollie Winnard (All Creatures Great and Small, Four Lives) join the cast for series three, and will play pivotal roles in Happy Valley’s final chapter.

Most recently airing on BBC One in 2016, Happy Valley is adored by viewers and critics alike, with series two attracting an average audience of 9.3 million. The first two series each won the BAFTA Television awards for both Drama Series and Writing: Drama for Sally Wainwright, with Sarah Lancashire winning the BAFTA Television award for Leading Actress for series two.

When Catherine discovers the remains of a gangland murder victim in a drained reservoir it sparks a chain of events that unwittingly leads her straight back to Tommy Lee Royce. Her grandson Ryan is now sixteen and still living with Catherine, but he has ideas of his own about what kind of relationship he wants to have with the man Catherine refuses to acknowledge as his father. Still battling the seemingly never-ending problem of drugs in the valley and those who supply them, Catherine is on the cusp of retirement.

Happy Valley series three (6×60′) was commissioned by Piers Wenger, Director of BBC Drama, and is a Lookout Point production for the BBC, co-produced with AMC. Happy Valley is written and created by Sally Wainwright. Series three will be directed by Patrick Harkins and Fergus O’Brien, with Chris Clough as series producer, and Jessica Taylor as producer. Executive producers are Sally Wainwright and Sarah Lancashire, with Faith Penhale and Will Johnston for Lookout Point, and Ben Irving for the BBC. BBC Studios, who wholly own Lookout Point, is distributing series three in addition to series one and two.

Happy Valley series three will premiere on BBC One and BBC iPlayer, and the first two series of Happy Valley are available to watch in full on BBC iPlayer now. In the U.S. and Canada, AMC Networks will be the exclusive home for series three which will be available on the AMC+ premium streaming bundle where series one and two are also now available to binge.

Filming will continue in and around West Yorkshire over the coming months. Further information about Happy Valley series three will be announced in due course.

Notes to Editors

– Happy Valley series one and two premiered on BBC One in 2014 and 2016 respectively.

– On 28-day consolidated viewing data, Happy Valley series one was watched by an average of 8 million viewers, with series two averaging 9.3 million viewers. The series two finale was watched by 9.8 million viewers when it aired in 2016.

Russell T Davies to Return as “Doctor Who” Showrunner

Russell T Davies to Return as “Doctor Who” Showrunner
Davies will make an explosive return to screens to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of “Doctor Who” in 2023, and series beyond.
[via press release from BBC]
Russell T Davies to return as Doctor Who showrunner

Russell T Davies will make an explosive return to screens to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Doctor Who in 2023, and series beyond. BBC Studios are partnering with Bad Wolf to produce.
Multi award-winning Russell T Davies will take control of the TARDIS once more as the next Doctor Who showrunner, succeeding Chris Chibnall who departs next year.

Russell T Davies will make an explosive return to screens to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Doctor Who in 2023, and series beyond. BBC Studios are partnering with Bad Wolf to produce.

Responsible for Doctor Who’s revival in 2005, he is credited with propelling the show into a global phenomenon and making it one of TV’s biggest hits. His tenure on the show oversaw a surge in popularity enjoying huge acclaim and success. The Doctor won the nation’s hearts through his masterful relaunch, which led him to create two spin off series, Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures during that time.

Davies left the show in 2009. A lifelong Doctor Who fan, he has most recently achieved huge success with Years and Years, A Very English Scandal and It’s a Sin which won Best New Drama at the National TV Awards this month. Russell T Davies says “I’m beyond excited to be back on my favourite show. But we’re time-travelling too fast, there’s a whole series of Jodie Whittaker’s brilliant Doctor for me to enjoy, with my friend and hero Chris Chibnall at the helm – I’m still a viewer for now.”

Chris Chibnall says “It’s monumentally exciting and fitting that Doctor Who’s 60th anniversary will see one of Britain’s screenwriting diamonds return home. Russell built the baton that is about to be handed back to him – Doctor Who, the BBC, the screen industry in Wales, and let’s be honest everyone in the whole world, have so many reasons to be Very Excited Indeed about what lies ahead.” Piers Wenger, BBC Director of Drama says “As the 13th Doctor prepares to embark on new and extraordinary adventures, the winds of change are blowing… bringing with them news to delight Doctor Who fans across the globe. We are thrilled that Russell is returning to Doctor Who to build on the huge achievements of Chris and Jodie. Thank you to the two of them and the team in Cardiff for all they continue to do for the show and hello Russell, it’s wonderful to have you back.”

Russell T Davies will make an explosive return to screens to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Doctor Who in 2023, and series beyond. BBC Studios are partnering with Bad Wolf to produce.



LONDON/UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. – Sept. 23, 2021: BBC and NBCUniversal have formed a groundbreaking development partnership to find and fund the next wave of unscripted programming ideas, with global scale and appeal.

The joint unscripted partnership will be open to all UK-based production companies and studios, maximizing the opportunities presented by the wide-ranging shared DNA of NBCUniversal and the BBC. Together, both parties will search for ambitious, platform-defining ideas with transatlantic potential, which will resonate across their respective linear and streaming platforms.

A broad range of unscripted genres will be considered, with a view to co-commission pilots or developments that have series potential. Both parties have agreed an aligned set of terms for UK producers, which are based on the BBC’s existing terms. On and off-screen diversity will form a significant part of the decision-making process. An outline of the terms and process will be made available to all producers.

Kate Phillips, Director of Entertainment, BBC Commissioning, said: “This unique partnership is such an exciting opportunity for UK-based producers. We want to lead the way in finding and investing in high impact, returnable British ideas and formats from all nations and regions, and this collaboration with NBCU will enable producers to develop their ideas at scale and win commissions on both sides of the Atlantic.”

Jenny Groom, EVP, Entertainment Unscripted Content, NBCUniversal Television and Streaming said: “In such a competitive landscape, we love the idea of amplifying our audiences and creative output in partnership with the BBC. There is no better partner for NBCU and with Sharon Vuong and her team helping to lead the charge for us, we look forward to bringing the next great wave of unscripted formats to viewers across the globe.”

The joint unscripted partnership was developed by Syeda Irtizaali for BBC Entertainment and Ed Havard, VP, Creative Partnerships for Universal Studio Group, which is a division of NBCUniversal. IP and idea submissions will be overseen by BBC Entertainment Commissioners Pinki Chambers and Neil McCallum, and Sharon Vuong and Ed Havard for NBCUniversal. It represents a world-first opportunity for UK-based producers to develop at scale for a unique broadcaster alliance, based on a shared set of values and a joint commitment to growing the next generation of unscripted hits.

The BBC and NBCUniversal already share success with several hit unscripted brands and formats. Recent examples include The Wall, The Wheel, The Weakest Link and Dragon’s Den, and the new development partnership builds on this track record of success.

A joint BBC & NBCUniversal briefing session will be announced in due course, which will give content creators an opportunity to hear more.

Tubi and BBC Studios Enter Significant Content Deal to Bring Over 400 Hours of Premium Programming

Tubi and BBC Studios Enter Significant Content Deal to Bring Over 400 Hours of Premium Programming to FOX Entertainment’s Free Streaming Service
New titles start launching today and, beginning September 15, Tubi will be the U.S. free streaming home to “The First Team,” starring Will Arnett and “Life” written by award-winning screenwriter Mike Bartlett, as well as debut the Baby Cow-produced “High & Dry.”
[via press release from BBC Studios]

New titles expand streaming’s largest library and begin launching today, with the U.S. premieres of The First Team starring Will Arnett, Life, and High & Dry launching on September 15

SAN FRANCISCO, September 1, 2021 – Tubi (, a division of FOX Entertainment, today announced it has entered a deal with BBC Studios, creators, producers and global distributors of world class British content, that brings over 400 hours of premium programming to FOX Entertainment’s free streaming service. New titles start launching today and, beginning Sept. 15, Tubi will be the U.S. free streaming home to “The First Team,” starring Will Arnett (“LEGO Masters,” “Arrested Development”) and “Life” written by award-winning screenwriter Mike Bartlett (“Doctor Foster”), as well as debut the Baby Cow-produced “High & Dry.”

Also as part of the deal, Tubi viewers will enjoy multiple seasons of long-running BBC series, including the beloved “Antiques Roadshow,” as well as “Atlantis,” “Misfits,” “Monarch of the Glen,” “The Musketeers,” “Primeval,” and “Robin Hood.”

“We are thrilled to begin our first-ever partnership with BBC Studios, showcasing the best in British creative talent,” said Adam Lewinson, Chief Content Officer, Tubi. “Viewers can now instantly access a wide cross-section of celebrated BBC content, including three series debuting on Tubi in the U.S.”

Dina Vangelisti, EVP, Content Sales, BBC Studios remarks: “BBC Studios has a growing footprint in the Americas, and we continue to explore news ways to meet our customers on their favorite services. The partnership with Tubi signifies a dedication to increasing our presence on AVOD platforms, expanding awareness of our powerhouse content catalog as well as bringing fresh programming to new audiences.”

Titles available on Tubi beginning today include “A Young Doctor’s Notebook,” “Atlantis, Bedlam,” “Blackout,” “Case Sensitive,” “Class,” “Confessions of a Serial Killer,” “Crime and “Punishment,” “The Fixer,” “The Guilty,” “In the Flesh,” “Inspector Alleyn Mysteries,” “Jack The Ripper: Prime Suspect,” “The Interceptor,” “The Lost Prince,” “Misfits,” “Monarch of the Glen,” “Moses Jones,” “The Musketeers,” “Primeval,” “Robin Hood,” “The Shadow Line,” “The Fades,” “Sarah & Duck,” “The Aliens,” and “Yakka Dee.”

Titles available on Tubi beginning Sept. 15 include “A Foreign Field,” “Black Easter,” “Consuming Passion: 100 Years of Mills and Boon,” “High & Dry,” “The Deep,” “The First Men in the Moon,” “Frankenstein,” “Life,” “Monarch of the Glen: Hogmanay 2003,” “Pride,” “The First Team,” and “The Turn of the Screw.” Select seasons of “Antiques Roadshow” also will be available beginning Oct. 15.

Titles premiering in the U.S. include:

“The First Team” (September 15)

Created by Damon Beesley and Iain Morris (“The Inbetweeners”) and starring six-time Emmy nominee Will Arnett (“LEGO Masters,” “Arrested Development”), Chris Geere (“You’re the Worst”), Jake Short (“A.N.T. Farm”), Jack McMullen (“Waterloo Road”) and Shaquille Ali-Yebuah (“iBoy”), “The First Team” is a character-driven comedy following the off-the-pitch escapades of three Premier league footballers. A Fudge Park Production.

“Life” (September 15)

Written by award-winning playwright Mike Bartlett, “Life” is a spin-off of the hit show “Doctor Foster” starring Victoria Hamilton (“The Crown”), Adrian Lester (“Hustle”), Melissa Johns (“Coronation Street”), Alison Steadman (“Life is Sweet”) and Saira Choudhry (“No Offence”), which explores the human capacity for connection in an increasingly splintered society.

“High & Dry” (September 15)

Starring Marc Wootton (“Nativity” film series), Harry Peacock (“Toast of London”), Vicki Pepperdine (“Getting On”), Grace Rex (“What Children Do”) and Asim Chaudhry (“People Just Do Nothing”), “High & Dry” follows a group of misfits who find themselves stranded on a desert island after their flight mysteriously crashes in the Indian Ocean. A Baby Cow production.

Tubi has more than 35,000 movies and television series from over 250 content partners, including every major studio, in addition to the largest offering of free live local and national news channels in streaming. The platform gives fans of entertainment, news and sports an easy way to discover new content that is available completely free.

Tubi is available on Android and iOS mobile devices, Amazon Echo Show, Google Nest Hub, and on OTT devices such as Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Apple TV, Chromecast, Android TV, Vizio TVs, Sony TVs, Samsung TVs, Hisense TVs, Comcast X1, Cox Contour, PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X | S. Consumers can also watch Tubi content on the web at

About Tubi

Tubi, a division of FOX Entertainment, is an ad-supported video-on-demand service with over 35,000 movies and TV shows, 65+ local and live news channels, and 250+ entertainment partners including content from nearly every major Hollywood studio. Tubi gives fans of films and television programs an easy way to discover new content that is available completely free.

BBC Studios, a global content company with bold British creativity at its heart, is a commercial subsidiary of the BBC. Able to take an idea seamlessly from thought to screen and beyond, its activities span content financing, development, production, sales, branded services, and ancillaries across both its own productions, and programs and formats made by high-quality UK independents. Award-winning British programs made by the business are internationally recognized across a broad range of genres and specialisms, with brands like Dancing with the Stars/Strictly Come Dancing, Top Gear, Doctor Who and Bluey. BBC Studios has offices in 22 markets globally, including ten production bases in the UK and production bases or partnerships in a further nine countries around the world. The company, which ordinarily makes around 2,500 hours of content a year for both the BBC and third parties including Apple, Amazon and China Mobile, is a champion for British creativity around the world. It is also a committed partner for the UK’s independent sector through a mix of equity partnerships, content investment and international distribution for program titles. To the BBC, BBC Studios contributes both cash dividends and funds for program-making, supporting the license fee and enhancing programs for UK audiences.

In the Americas, BBC Studios – with team members across the region – manages joint venture relationships with AMC Networks for flagship channel BBC AMERICA (U.S.) – home of original series Killing Eve and global brands Seven Worlds: One Planet, Doctor Who, and Top Gear – and with ITV for SVoD service BritBox (U.S./Canada), as well as a strategic partnership in Canada with Blue Ant Media for BBC Earth Channel and BBC First. The company also operates a robust linear and digital content sales and co-productions operation, as well as a franchise management business. In addition, BBC Studios operates a major production unit in Los Angeles responsible for the highly-rated, Emmy(R)-winning Dancing with the Stars, the multi-award-winning Life Below Zero, and the popular reboot of the classic quiz show Weakest Link. In Brazil, through a production partnership with Endemol Shine, local production Dancing Brasil has become a breakout hit. In addition, the company has recently launched BBC SELECT in the U.S. and Canada, an ad-free, digital streaming channel offering all-new documentaries across culture, politics and ideas, on Amazon Prime Video Channels and the Apple TV app.

Follow us on Twitter: @BBCStudiosUSPR | BBC Studios Press Room

BBC and Netflix Form Partnership to Develop and Co-Produce Shows From Disabled Creatives

BBC and Netflix Form Partnership to Develop and Co-Produce Shows From Disabled Creatives

The BBC and Netflix have formed a groundbreaking partnership to develop and fund new, ambitious dramas featuring disabled creatives both in front of and behind the camera.

Building on the existing commitments of both the BBC and Netflix, the five year partnership has been designed to increase representation of disabled talent both on-screen and off-screen, to widen the range of stories produced and give disabled writers and creatives greater choice when it comes to the sort of stories they wish to tell.

The BBC and Netflix will consider projects from UK producers that have been created or co-created by writers who identify as deaf, disabled and/or neurodivergent. All projects are to be created or co-created by deaf, disabled and neurodivergent writers. Pitches can draw imaginatively on any genre, precinct or world. We are looking for ideas which feel ambitious and elevated, and which challenge the limits that the industry might unconsciously put on disability. The intention of the partnership is to firmly place the shows alongside our most talked about and original dramas already being developed.

All projects will be assessed and developed jointly, but the BBC will be the point of entry for all project submissions and pitches for the initiative. The BBC and Netflix will issue a creative brief and outline of the process which will be made available to all producers, alongside a webinar.

Piers Wenger, BBC Director of Drama, says: “Jack’s powerful, memorable MacTaggart has shone a revealing light onto the extent of the challenges faced by disabled creatives. We recognise the need for change and we hope that in coming together the BBC and Netflix have created a funding model which will help level the playing field for deaf, disabled and neurodivergent creators in the UK. We would like to thank Anne and her team for the readiness and vision they have shown in coming on board to develop this initiative with us.”

Anne Mensah, Netflix Vice President, Series, UK, said: “Deaf, disabled and neurodivergent creators are some of the least well represented groups on television in the UK. Put simply, we want to change that fact. Together with the BBC, we hope to help these creators to tell the biggest and boldest stories and speak to the broadest possible British and Global audience. It’s been hugely exciting to develop this project with Piers Wenger and the BBC Drama team and we are incredibly passionate about the creative possibilities of this partnership.”

Creative Brief

Our intention is to co-commission dramas which will place disability front and centre. We want to level the playing field in terms of opportunities available to deaf, disabled and neurodivergent talent, and to increase the range, scope and ambition of stories featuring disability.

Drawing imaginatively on any genre, precinct or world, we are looking for ideas which feel fresh and elevated and challenge any limits that the industry consciously or unconsciously puts upon disability. Returnability is desirable but not essential to all of the ideas – not least because the intention is to firmly place these shows at the core of our content and our audience’s hearts.

We would like the pieces to be written, created or co-created by deaf, disabled or neurodivergent talent. Disability has been under-represented on screen and disabled talent under-represented off screen, for too long. This initiative is part of the wider work both Netflix and BBC are doing to deliver entertaining, celebratory work that is game-changing for representation and a must-see for our audiences.

Please note this opportunity is open to eligible UK based production companies only (please see eligibility criteria below). If you are a writer with an idea or script or would like to find out more about how you can work with BBC drama, please see the working with writers page.

Submissions should be sent to

All submissions will be reviewed by BBC Drama and Netflix and responses and feedback will be made jointly.

This opportunity is for UK based independent production companies who have either had:

(a) A BBC TV commission in the last three years (including BBC Films shown on a BBC UK platform).

(b) A TV commission for original content from another major UK broadcaster or SVOD platform available in UK in the last three years.

Further details of a webinar briefing will be announced in due course.