The BBC’s drama about the fall of Troy has been given a suitably epic injection of funds from global streaming service Netflix.
Troy: Fall of a City is written by The Night Manager screenwriter David Farr, and while we have known for years that the drama is in the works, we now learn that Netflix has joined forces with the BBC to bring it to the screen.
The multi-part series is set tell the story of the siege of Troy from the point of view of a Trojan family, and becomes just the latest in a series of collaborations between the BBC and Netflix.
Series two of BBC2 history drama The Last Kingdom, set to air this spring, is being co-produced by the BBC and Netflix, and the upcoming big budget adaptation of Watership Down also unites the British broadcaster and the US on-demand service.
Netflix have also just announced that they will be working with BBC2 on Black Earth Rising, a new thriller from writer and director Hugo Blick (creator of The Shadow Line and The Honourable Woman).
The deal for all these co-productions mean that the BBC will premiere the series in the UK, with Netflix streaming the dramas abroad.
Since 2012, Netflix has committed to spending $1.75 billion on original European productions. Those deep pockets mean that many British broadcasters are currently working with them to create marquee drama. ITV crime drama Marcella, for example, is also being produced with support from Netflix.
“Great storytelling knows no geographic bounds,” said Ted Sarandos, chief content officer at Netflix. “After four years of original programming and filming in 18 countries, we know compelling stories can come from anywhere and no matter their origin, can resonate with audiences around the world.”
“I am thrilled Netflix have come on board with these two BBC dramas, making it now possible for both stories to be seen by a global audience,” said BBC drama boss Piers Wenger.
Troy: Fall of a City is due to begin filming in South Africa this March and will air on BBC1. Black Mirror director Owen Harris will helm the series, and the executive producer is Derek Wax (Humans, The Hour).
“David Farr’s bold and visceral rendition of the 3000-year-old classic, told across multiple parts, will be unlike anything we’ve ever seen on BBC1 before,” said BBC Director of Content Charlotte Moore when the series was first announced. “Intimate and epic, gripping and exhilarating, rich with psychological intrigue and human drama, we will feel the characters’ passions, pain and loss.”
A UK air date for Troy: Fall of a City is yet to be confirmed.