'Black Sails' billed as prequel to 'Treasure Island' novel

Starz is giving a direct-to-series order for pirate adventure series “Black Sails” from exec producer Michael Bay.

Pay cabler has committed to eight episodes and plans to air the drama in 2014. Story, which takes place 20 years prior to the Robert Louis Stevenson novel “Treasure Island,” involves feared pirate Capt. Flint and his crew, which includes a young John Silver.

Series will be shot in Cape Town, South Africa next year.

Bay and his Platinum Dunes partners Brad Fuller and Andrew Form will exec produce with creator Jon Steinberg (“Jericho”).

Because of the action elements of the series, Starz believes the show will garner strong international appeal. In that regard, in order to build a strong financial model, Starz will retain all domestic and global rights, including TV, homevideo and digital.

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