June 26, 2023


Moonage Pictures (The Pursuit of Love; BBC) and Nicolas Winding Refn today announce filming has begun on a brand-new series of The Famous Five for the BBC in the UK in co-production with ZDF in Germany. The French territory is already presold to TF1.  The 3 x 90min series will be created for television and executive produced by NICOLAS WINDING REFN (byNWR) & MATTHEW READ (Moonage Pictures) based on Enid Blyton’s 21 stories. Filming takes place across the South West of the UK.

Nicolas Winding Refn, creator and executive producer, says, “All my life I’ve fought vigorously to remain a child with a lust for adventure. By reimagining The Famous Five, I am preserving that notion by bringing these iconic stories to life for a progressive new audience, instilling the undefinable allure and enchantment of childhood for current and future generations to come.”

Will Gould, co-founder of Moonage Pictures says, “Moonage Pictures was created to provide the right creative environment to explore ideas without limitation and this provides us with exactly that opportunity. In the hands of Nicolas and Matthew this Famous Five will be a modern, timely and irreverent action series with adventure at its heart.”

Patricia Hidalgo, Director BBC Children’s and Education, said: “Bringing these books to life with a new reimagining of The Famous Five is a real treat for BBC audiences and a celebration of British heritage. These stories are loved around the world and bringing families together is a key part of our strategy so we hope it introduces a new generation of viewers to these wonderful adventures.”

The series follows five daring young explorers as they encounter treacherous, action-packed adventures, remarkable mysteries, unparalleled danger, and astounding secrets in an unforgettable odyssey that evokes the power of camaraderie between the fearless young heroes.

The series was commissioned by Sarah Muller, Senior Head of Children’s Commissioning 7+ Director and the commissioning editor for the BBC is Amy Buscombe. The commissioning editors of ZDF will be Frank Seyberth and Katharina Kremling. It will be directed by Tim Kirkby and produced by Moonage Pictures and byNWR Originals. BBC Studios, who have a minority stake in Moonage, will oversee international distribution and brokered the co-production and presales deals with both France’s TF1 and Germany’s ZDF. Episode 1 is written by Matthew Read, episode 2 is written by Priya K Dosanjh, with episode 3 being written by Matthew Bouch and Matthew Read. Executive Producers are Nicolas Winding Refn, Matthew Read, Will Gould, Frith Tiplady, Christina Bostofte Erritzøe, Kimberly Willming and Matthew Bouch. Producer is Sophie MacClancy.

Dr. Simone Emmelius, SVP International Fiction ZDF, said: “We are thrilled to join forces with our friends and partners of the BBC, BBC Studios and TF1 to bring the much loved books of Enid Blyton back on screen. Moonage and the amazing creative team created modern and exciting new adventures for the well-known Famous Five, which we can’t wait to show our audiences.“

Sophie Leveaux, Artistic Director of Acquisitions & International Drama Development, TF1, said “We are delighted and proud to be taking part in The Famous Five adventure alongside our formidable partners BBC and ZDF. This wonderful series of books has enjoyed undeniable success for several generations in France. This great brand, perfect for bringing the whole family together, fits in perfectly with TF1’s editorial line. We are convinced that this remarkably well-written TV series, faithful to Enid Blyton’s novel, will be a great asset to TF1’s programming.”

Karen Lawler, Head of Licensed Content for Hachette Children’s Group, owners of Enid Blyton Entertainment, said, “We are delighted that Moonage Pictures will be bringing all the thrills, charm and warmth of The Famous Five to television.”

Mark Linsey, President of Scripted, BBC Studios Productions said, “The Famous Five books are full of childhood adventures and friendship. We are excited to have brought our longstanding colleagues at TF1 and ZDF onboard with our production partners at Moonage to bring these iconic characters to screen for a new audience around the world.”


Notes to Editors:


Moonage Pictures was founded by Will Gould, Matthew Read and Frith Tiplady in 2018 with the aim to create and produce original, unconventional, and inventive television and film for both the UK and international markets. Currently in production on a new eight-part Guy Ritchie series for Netflix, The Gentlemen, set in the world of his movie with the same name, starring Theo James (White Lotus), Kaya Scodelario (Crawl), Giancarlo Esposito (Better Call Saul) and Vinnie Jones. Also in production are the adaptations of the graphic novel Bodies, for Netflix, The Leopard for Netflix Italy (in partnership with Indiana Production), and A Good Girl’s Guide To Murder for theBBC Recent productions include Emily Mortimer’s critically acclaimed adaptation of Nancy Mitford’s The Pursuit of Love for BBC One and Amazon and Josephine Hart’s novel Damage as Obsession for Netflix which launched in April.


Director, Writer, Producer, Nicolas Winding Refn known for the Pusher trilogy (1996–2005), Bleeder (1999), Bronson (2008), Valhalla Rising (2009), Drive (2011), Only God Forgives (2013), The Neon Demon (2016), and the series Too Old to Die Young (2019). In 2021, he launched byNWR Originals, a multifaceted media platform and production company which creates stimulating, diverse content across an array of mediums including television, film, animation, music, art and beyond. Most recently, byNWR Originals partnered with Netflix to release its initial creation, Copenhagen Cowboy, a neon-drenched noir series, which debuted at the 2022 Venice Film Festival. The byNWR banner is spearheaded by Managing Director, Christina Bostofte Erritzøe, with byNWR Studios managed by Emilie Guldbrandsen and byNWR Originals by Kimberly Willming.

About BBC Studios

BBC Studios is a commercial subsidiary of the BBC Group with sales of £1.6bn (21/22). Able to take an idea seamlessly from thought to screen and beyond, the business is built on four pillars: a global Content Studio (producing, investing and distributing content globally); Channels & Streaming platforms in the UK and across the world; a Brands & Licencing operation which seeks to amplify the impact of IP; and the successful UK-based multi-channel network UKTV. Around 2,400 hours of award-winning British programmes are made by the business every year, with three-quarters of its revenues from non-BBC customers including Discovery, Apple and Netflix.  Its content is internationally recognised across a broad range of genres and specialisms, with brands like Strictly Come Dancing/Dancing with the Stars, Top Gear, Prehistoric Planet, Bluey and Doctor Who. is BBC Studios’ global digital news platform, offering up-to-the-minute international news, in-depth analysis and features, including BBC Worklife, BBC Culture, BBC Future, BBC Travel and BBC Reel, for PCs, tablets and mobile devices.

BBC Studios | Website | Press Office | Twitter | LinkedIn | Instagram |

About ZDF

ZDF (Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen) is Germany’s national public television broadcaster. It is run as an independent non-profit corporation under the authority of the Länder, the sixteen states that constitute the Federal Republic of Germany. The nationwide channel ZDF has been broadcasting since 1st April 1963 and remains one of the country’s leading sources of information. Today, ZDF also operates the two thematic channels ZDFneo and ZDFinfo. In partnership with other public broadcasters, ZDF jointly operates the internet-only offer funk, the German channels PHOENIX and KiKA, and the European channels 3sat and ARTE.

About TF1 group

The TF1 group is a major player in the production, publication and distribution of content.

Our raison d’être: to positively inspire society.

Our operations are split between two divisions:

The Media division is home to our free-to-air channels (TF1, TMC, TFX, TF1 Séries Films, LCI), our theme channels (Ushuaia TV, Histoire TV, TV Breizh, Série Club), our on-demand content platforms (MYTF1, TFOU MAX), and the TF1 PUB advertising airtime sales house. We also operate in music production and live shows with Muzeek One.

The Production division, with Newen Studios, is home to 40 creative companies and labels in France and abroad. The division creates and distributes programmes across all genres and for all media industry players, from public-service and private-sector broadcasters to online platforms.

TF1 group has operations in some 10 countries, and employed 2,810 people as of 31 December 2022. In 2022, the Group generated revenue of €2,508m (Euronext Paris, compartment A: ISIN FR0000054900