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CBS plans Churchill miniseries

Producer Martin Ransohoff will make his first foray into longform television with a six-hour miniseries chronicling the life ofWinston Churchill that’s in development at CBS.

The project will be based on “The Last Lion,” the massive Churchill biography by Bill Manchester.

The first volume was published by Little, Brown in 1983, and a third installment is being written.

Ransohoff said he hopes to select a writer and have a completed screenplay by the fall, with a goal of producing and airing the miniseries next year in recognition of the 50th anniversary of World War II’s conclusion — not to mention Britain’s unceremoni-ous booting of Churchill from power.

No cast has been set, and still to be determined is how much time would be devoted to Churchill’s early years vs. his wartime stint as prime minister. Production would take place in London and throughout Europe, in conjunction with CBS Entertainment Prods.

In addition to the miniseries, the producer also has an option to produce two more movies based on the Churchill material. Ransohoff’s credits include such movies as “The Cincinnati Kid,””Switching Channels” and, most recently, the Disney release “Guilty as Sin.”

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