May 12, 2011

BBC Worldwide Secures Deal with Film & Arts Latin America for Acclaimed Drama Slate Ahead of LA Screenings

New York, NY –– BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of the BBC, heats up the west coast with a captivating line-up of new programming at the 2011 LA Screenings. From dramas and comedies to natural history and children’s titles, BBC Worldwide has a catalog of over 50,000 hours, offering a wide range of options for every buyer.

Leading up to the LA Screenings event, Film & Arts Latin America, a Pramer network, has acquired a range of drama content from BBC Worldwide Latin America. The deal includes the first season of popular, critically-acclaimed series, Misfits, which follows the lives of five unruly teenagers who are forced to do community service as payback for crimes committed. When a freak electrical storm hits their town, each of the teenagers mysteriously develops a different super power…a super power that reveals their deepest, darkest insecurities. The series won the BAFTA for Best Drama Series in 2010. Film & Arts also licensed a number of other dramas, including the second series of critically-acclaimed Ashes to AshesThe Haunted Airman, a chilling film starring Robert Pattinson of Twilight fame as a troubled young man who returns from World War II to face new terrors, as well as mystery drama The Sally Lockhart Mysteries and two Dickens miniseries; Oliver Twist and David Copperfield.

Helen Jurado, Vice-President of Television Sales & Distribution, BBC Worldwide Latin America said: “This is an excellent deal with Film & Arts that illustrates the enthusiasm Latin American broadcasters and audiences have for first-class British dramas.” Helen continued, “We have a number of captivating programs from all genres to present at this year’s LA Screenings; some will make you swoon, like the romantic, mystery series Zen; some will spark your curiosity, like Frozen Planet and Earth Under Water; and others will have you hiding under the covers, like spooky drama series, Bedlam.”

BBC Worldwide will host screenings of hotly anticipated series, Torchwood: Miracle Day during LA Screenings for international clients. BBC Worldwide owns the exclusive international distribution rights to the series Torchwood: Miracle Day, which is produced by BBC Worldwide Productions and premieres on U.S. network Starz, Friday, July 8th at 10pm et/pt.

Visit BBC Worldwide Latin America in Suites 1714 -1716 at the Hyatt Century Plaza in Los Angeles at LA Screenings.

The Fades (Drama 6 x 60’)
A smart, exciting, supernatural thriller centering on Paul and his best friend Mac – the unpopular kids at their college. Paul is also a troubled young man haunted by apocalyptic dreams. Worse still, Paul has started to see things – Fades. These are human spirits who are completely unable to interact with the world. They should ascend, but for some reason, that isn’t happening. And now an embittered and vengeful Fade has found a way to break the barrier between the dead and the living. Soon the fate of humanity rests in the hands of the two friends who already have enough trouble getting through a day in one piece, let alone saving the world.  The Fades is a BBC Drama production for BBC America and BBC Three.

Me & My Monsters (Children’s, 26 x 25’)
Me & My Monsters follows the lives of the Carlson family, Nick, Kate and their children Eddie and Angela, who have recently relocated from Australia to a smart townhouse in the UK. The townhouse was cheap, and has everything they could wish for in a new home. So what’s the catch? Well…there are monsters in the basement! But they’re not the kind of monsters that people should be afraid of. Fiend, Haggis and Norman might look a bit odd; they might cause mess and mayhem; they might have questionable personal hygiene issues – but the reality is they just want to be loved. And for Eddie, they’re the best friends a 10-year-old boy could have.  A Tiger Aspect/The Jim Henson Company/Sticky Pictures production for BBC, Network TEN and ZDF.

Sadie J (Children’s, 13 x 30’)
Sadie Jenkins is the only girl in her family and there’s not a masculine pursuit she hasn’t been forced to endure. This has never been a problem… until now. Sadie is now a young lady and she wants to be treated like one. However Sadie’s journey from tomboy to girly girl is not going to be easy. From fashion faux pas, to disastrous dates and make-up meltdowns, who knew growing up could be this tough?  A BBC production.

Bedlam (Drama, 6 x 50’)
Welcome to Bedlam Heights, a hip newly converted apartment building on the edge of a British metropolis. The high quality rental apartments offer stylish 21st century living, but behind the facade lie unimaginable horrors. For this former pre-Victorian asylum is haunted by the ghosts of its dark and violent past. Kate, who lives and works at Bedlam Heights, thinks anyone who believes in ghosts is a fool. Overly self-confident but ultimately self-destructive, she is surprised by the unexpected arrival of Jed – her adopted cousin. Jed is unique. With a history of mental illness, he’s a troubled young man who sees visions of the dead, the past and ghosts. He’s convinced Kate is in danger from the spooks of Bedlam, but unbeknown to him, Kate and friends Molly and Ryan, the truth will be far more terrifying. A Red production for Sky Living HD.

Zen – Italian Detective (Drama, 3 x 90’)
Based on the books by Michael Dibdin, Aurelio Zen, played by Rufus Sewell (Eleventh HourThe Pillars of the EarthThe Holiday), is a formidable detective, but he’s always put honesty before advancement. The arrival of clever and ambitious Tania (Caterina Murino, Casino Royale) to the team sees Zen’s vigor reawakened. Driven by romance, re-energized and armed with a new confidence, Zen’s investigations take him from crowded Rome to the spectacular Italian countryside. As he negotiates a complex string of murder cases, he’s never afraid to question authority or use a few unorthodox methods to see justice done. A Left Bank Pictures Production for the BBC, co-produced with RTI (Gruppo Mediaset), Masterpiece, ZDF and Ingenious Broadcasting in association with LipSync Productions and BBC Worldwide.

Frozen Planet (Natural History, 6 x 50’)
Embark on the trip of a lifetime, as the BBC’s acclaimed Natural History Unit takes you on a spectacular polar expedition into a breathtaking landscape most humans will never experience. Ambitious and epic in scale, this landmark series is the ultimate portrait of the great wildernesses of the Arctic and Antarctic before they change forever. Narrated by world renowned naturalist Sir David Attenborough, Frozen Planet has taken new technology to the most extreme and remote parts of our planet, capturing groundbreaking imagery as camera teams go deep under the ice into a magical world of giants, plunge into the heart of an erupting polar volcano and fly to the South Pole across the Antarctic ice cap. A BBC/Discovery/Antena 3 Television S.A./ZDF/Open University/Skai co-production in association with Discovery Canada.

Nature’s Miracle Babies (Natural History, 5 x 50’)
Join zoologist Martin Hughes-Games as he follows the dedicated and inspirational individuals working to save some very special babies – nature’s miracle babies – who are the lifeline to preserving some of our planet’s most critically vulnerable species. Martin visits projects all over the world, from the outback of Australia to the savannahs of East Africa. In each episode, he follows animals and their stories, bringing insight into the fascinating biology of amazing creatures such as Caracals, Bald Ibis and Sifaka. He discovers how extraordinary hi-tech science is being used to help miracle babies and how treatments developed for people are being adapted for animals.  The ultimate challenge for these caretakers is to raise these animals, and then return them to the wild.  A BBC Production.

Rare Anatomy (Science, 4 x 50’)
Imagine breaking a rib just by coughing or having an internal organ turn to bone. Rare Anatomy explores the science of blood, bone, muscle and skin, using cutting-edge animation techniques to take viewers inside the bodies of people with extraordinary genetic conditions. Meet the two boys whose vascular systems defy medical textbooks. Delve into the worlds of Osteogenesis Imperfecta (brittle bone syndrome) and Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva, a condition that progressively encases a person in a second skeleton. And discover what makes and breaks the intricate and delicate tissue we call skin, through the teenager whose skin grows thicker without flaking off, and a man with the opposite problem: his skin doesn’t stick to his body.  An Authentic Entertainment production for National Geographic Channel.

Earth Under Water (Science, 1 x 50’)
Eminent climatologists think another Great Flood is inevitable if current COemissions continue. Based on research by NASA astro-biologist and paleontologist Professor Peter Ward and a group of respected American climatologists, this eye-opening documentary uses scientific evidence past and present, archive footage, location photography and CGI to explore the terrifying consequences should the atmosphere’s CO2levels treble over the next 100 to 300 years, as predicted. Step by step, it paints a chilling picture of the world as the sea levels rise from between one and 70 meters, unraveling the science behind this cataclysm, revealing when it could strike and what its impact would be on humanity. The film also questions experts and politicians about what measures can be taken now to stop the rise of CO2emissions, and explores how extreme engineering will buy us time. But the message of this film is stark, spelling out in graphic detail the Earth’s apocalyptic future. A Picture Films production for National Geographic US, Antena 3 Films, S.A. and BBC Worldwide.

Egypt – What Lies Beneath (History, 1 x 90’)
The ancient Egyptians have fascinated us for centuries. The Pyramids, the Sphinx and the tombs of the Pharaohs are all enduring monuments to their past. But according to one scientist, Dr. Sarah Parcak, the astonishing antiquities already discovered are just a tiny percentage of what was left behind by the ancient Egyptians. This spellbinding film takes viewers on a remarkable voyage of discovery to solve some of the mysteries of ancient Egypt. Using cutting-edge satellite technology, Dr. Parcak and her team attempt to create a new map of ancient Egypt; detecting thousands of new sites and revealing lost tombs, temples and cities buried beneath the shifting sands. For the first time, using stunning data-driven CGI, an ancient Egypt never before imagined, let alone seen, is brought to life in this cinematic adventure.  A BBC/Discovery co-production.

Arctic with Bruce Parry (Documentaries, 5 x 50’)
The Arctic is on the point of enormous, irreversible change. The effects of global warming are magnified in this area, as the sea ice is melting, new land is appearing and with it, fresh boundaries are being drawn. Indigenous ways of life that have remained virtually unchanged for millennia will cease within our lifetimes – but for others, the untold riches of the oil, gas and minerals slowly being revealed under the polar ice cap promise countless opportunities. Over the course of one summer, Bruce Parry immersed himself in the lives of the Arctic’s people. From the fishermen in the Bering Sea, to oil workers tapping the vast wealth of the Arctic reserve, native hunters desperately clinging on to the last breath of their culture, bush pilots, miners, fire-fighters and scientists mapping the ever-shrinking ice cap.  An Indus / Endeavour production for BBC and Animal Planet.

About BBC Worldwide Sales & Distribution
BBC Worldwide Sales & Distribution is one of seven core businesses under BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm and wholly-owned subsidiary of the UK public service broadcaster, BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation).  BBC Worldwide exists to maximize the value of the BBC’s assets for the benefit of the BBC, and invests in programming in return for rights. The Sales & Distribution business negotiates, sells and distributes television programs to networks and secures co-production partners, in the Americas region.

Press Contacts
Catherine Mirra
Manager, Communications
BBC Worldwide, Americas
+ 1 212 705 9335
Mobile: + 1 347 821 7677

Christine Black
VP, Communications
BBC Worldwide, Americas
+1 212 705 9435