Endemol acquires International Drama producer Artists Studio

MUMBAI: Endemol, a world leader in multiplatform entertainment, today announced it has acquired international drama production company Artists Studio.

Artists Studio produces critically acclaimed hits such as The Fall, starring Gillian Anderson (‘The X-Files’, ‘The Last King of Scotland’) and Jamie Dornan (‘Fifty Shades of Grey’, ‘Once Upon a Time’). Created and written by Alan Cubitt, this remains BBC Two’s most successful drama to date, averaging more than 4 million viewers per episode across its first season in 2013.  

Previous Artists Studio credits include Combat Hospital for ABC and Thorne for Sky UK. 

Endemol will globally distribute Artists Studio productions including the second season of The Fall, which has been commissioned for production in 2014 (6 x 1 hours for BBC Two); as well as numerous projects commissioned and in development for UK and US broadcasters. Further announcements will be made in due course. 

Emmy award-winning producer, Gub Neal (‘Prime Suspect’; ‘Cracker’; ‘Queer as Folk’) co-founded Artists Studio in February 2009, alongside Justin Thomson-Glover and Patrick Irwin, all three of whom formerly ran drama producer Box TV. 

Based in South Wales and with offices in London, Artists Studio also incorporates sister company  Far Moor Media, which provides executive production services including pre-sales, deal structuring, rights management and casting, for an extensive portfolio of international drama producers. Far Moor’s most recent project is Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell (BBC1, BBC America, Space), currently filming for delivery in late 2014. 

Artists Studio becomes part of Endemol UK, which has drama credits including Peaky Blinders (Tiger Aspect and Caryn Mandabach for BBC Two), Ripper Street (Tiger Aspect for BBC One and Amazon Studios), Black Mirror (Zeppotron for Channel 4), Prisoners’ Wives (Tiger Aspect for BBC One) and The Mill (DSP for Channel 4). 

Lucas Church, CEO of Endemol UK comments: “Artists Studio is led by outstanding talent and has a slate that includes one of the BBC’s biggest ever dramas and a world-class line up of new series for the international market.  This acquisition underpins Endemol UK’s position as a company with some of the most successful drama in the business.” 

Cathy Payne CEO of Endemol Worldwide Distribution adds: “Artists Studio is one of the most exciting producers of quality drama in the marketplace today. Their productions combine exceptional writing and performances with gripping storytelling that can captivate audiences all over the world. Having them in the Endemol family will be a further boost to the Group’s global scripted output and to our worldwide distribution business. “ 

Gub Neal, Creative Director of Artists Studio comments: “Artists Studio's international activity has grown rapidly over the last 12 months, creating huge opportunities, which is why it now makes total sense to join forces with a truly global player.  Endemol have the status, scale and reach to help us grow the business outside the UK, but equally the creative hubris and sensitivity to allow us to continue our work with UK talent in the bespoke manner that defines our brand.” 

Joint Managing Director of Far Moor Media, Justin Thomson-Glover adds: "We are delighted that Endemol understand the unique potential of Far Moor's services.  As consultant executive producers we will continue to offer production companies and talent, significant added value in the sphere of bespoke co-production deals and pre-sales for event television in the international market.” 

Endemol’s scripted programming business has grown internationally by 75% in the last five years and today represents a quarter of the company’s worldwide business. 

Other Endemol drama productions around the world include Hell on Wheels, which is now in its fourth season on AMC in the USA; as well as major forthcoming series such as Gallipoli (Endemol Australia for Nine Network and TV3 New Zealand) and Fortitude (Tiger Aspect/Fifty Fathoms for Sky Atlantic), starring Michael Gambon, Stanley Tucci, Christopher Eccleston and Sofie Grabol. 

Endemol also globally distributes a growing portfolio of more than 10,000 hours of scripted programming.  This includes major series such as The Crimson Field (BBC Drama for BBC One), Death Comes to Pemberley (Origin Pictures for BBC One, produced in association with Far Moor), The Thirteenth Tale (HeyDay Films for BBC One), Hot in Cleveland (TV Land USA), and Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell (Cuba Pictures /Feel Films / Far Moor for BBC One).

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