'Wrong Mans' to be helmed by Jim Field Smith
CANNES — The BBC is getting into bed with U.S. online player Hulu again for “The Wrong Mans,” a dramedy starring James Corden.The co-production between BBC Worldwide Americas and Hulu follows the pair’s partnership on U.K. political satire “The Thick of It.” The six-part series will be exclusively distributed to U.S. auds on the Hulu Plus VOD subscription service in 2013. In the skein, Corden, feted for his Broadway role in “One Man, Two Guvnors,” plays lowly office worker Phil caught up in a criminal conspiracy involving a car crash. Co-star is Mathew Baynton, who worked with Corden in hit Britcom “Gavin & Stacey,” cast as Sam, another nondescript clerical employee involved in the scam. Both men end up in the wrong place, at the wrong time — hence the title “The Wrong Mans.” Show is helmed and produced by Jim Field Smith, whose credits include “Episodes,” a partnership between Showtime and U.K. indie Hat Trick. “The Wrong Mans” is written by Corden and Baynton. Corden co-wrote “Gavin & Stacey” with Welsh thesp Ruth Jones. Exec producers are Mark Freeland, the BBC’s head of comedy, and Charlotte Koh, Hulu’s head of development. Matt Forde, exec VP sales and co-productions, BBC Worldwide Americas, said: “Hulu has become a leading content platform where many terrific series such as ‘Misfits’ and ‘Rev’ have found a home and a significant audience in the U.S. “This deal is a fantastic example of a creative and commercial collaboration between Hulu and BBC Comedy. “ Forde emphasized how the Beeb is increasingly finding co-production partners in the U.S., teaming up with online operators like Hulu and cablers such as Showtime, Ovation and Logo. Hulu also announced at MIPCOM an expansion of a pre-existing agreement with Viacom that will add series from Nickelodeon to a trove of content already on the subscription component of the service, Hulu Plus. Programming from the conglom’s channels including Comedy Central, BET and MTV will stay on Hulu Plus with a 21-day delay from their premiere airdate. Hulu Plus is the only SVOD service to have in-season Nickelodeon content.