You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Sony Pictures TV buys stake in Left Bank

U.K. company produces 'Wallander,' 'Strike Back'

LONDON — Sony Pictures Television has taken a majority stake in U.K. production company Left Bank Pictures, its first move into scripted production in Blighty.

Under the deal, which was anticipated (Variety, July 8), SPT will distribute future Left Bank TV content, both finished programming and formats. SPT will also have a first-look distribution option on features produced by the company.

Left Bank, headed by Andy Harries and Marigo Kehoe, is one of the U.K.’s leading producers of TV dramas and movies.

It produces Kenneth Branagh-starring crime series “Wallander” for WGBH Boston and the BBC, and action series “Strike Back” for Cinemax/HBO in the U.S. and satcaster BSkyB in the U.K. The company is producing a six-part Nelson Mandela biopic, working titled “Madiba.”

Its feature credits include “The Lady,” a biopic about Burma’s activist Aung San Suu Kyi, starring Michelle Yeoh, and Martin Sheen-starrer “The Damned United,” about soccer manager Brian Clough.

Before setting up the company with Kehoe in 2007, Harries produced “The Queen,” starring Helen Mirren.

SPT’s prexy of international production, Andrea Wong, said, “Powered by the outstanding creative talent of Andy, Marigo and their team, Left Bank is justifiably admired in the U.K. and internationally, making it the perfect complement to our diverse U.K. portfolio.”

SPT owns three other U.K. shingles — Gogglebox Entertainment, Victory Television and Silver River.

Harries said, “This marks the start of a new phase of ambitious quality drama from us for the international market place.”

Harries and Kehoe will report to Wong, former CEO and prexy of Lifetime, who joined SPT in September as prexy of international production, based in London.

SPT produces scripted TV locally in Germany, Russia, the Netherlands, the Middle East and across Latin America. It operates wholly owned and joint venture companies in 15 countries covering Europe, Latin America, Asia and the Middle East.

More TV

  • Dan Lin's Rideback, MRC Announce Writers

    Dan Lin's Rideback, MRC Announce First Class of Writers and Mentors for TV Incubator

    Rideback, Dan Lin’s production company, and MRC have announced the inaugural class of writers and mentors for their TV incubator.  The new TV writers residency program, which was launched in February, offers a paid, eight-month residency program to a group of writers who have each previously been staffed on series and want to create their [...]

  • CBS Viacom

    CBS and Viacom Move Closer to Merger Talks

    The CBS Corp. board of directors is moving closer to initiating acquisition discussions with Viacom, according to multiple sources close to the situation. The move has been expected for months, although there may still be obstacles on the road to a reunion for the two sides of the Redstone media empire. Price could still be [...]

  • Santa Fe Studios Netflix

    Santa Fe Studios Competes With Other New Mexico Stages for Streaming Business

    Albuquerque Studios entered the spotlight last October when it was purchased by Netflix. While the complex is clearly the jewel in the crown of New Mexico’s production infrastructure, with eight soundstages totaling 132,000 square feet, 100,000 square feet of production offices, a large backlot and support space, it’s not the only modern studio facility in [...]

  • Wahlburgers

    'Wahlburgers' Renewed for 10th and Final Season at A&E

    A&E has renewed “Wahlburgers” for a 10th and final season. The reality series following brothers Mark, Donnie and Paul Wahlberg will debut the new installment at on May 15. A&E has also released a trailer for the season. Season 10 will continue to focus on the Wahlberg brothers as they balance family and their eponymous [...]

  • Game of Thrones Season 8

    From 'Game of Thrones' to 'Big Bang Theory,' Spinoffs Will Keep the Hits Alive

    By this time next year, many of the brightest lights in the current TV universe will cease to shine. Some of the most popular and acclaimed shows are set to air their swan songs this year and during the 2019-20 broadcast season. While programs come and go all the time, the sheer number of iconic [...]

  • Jussie Smollett Empire

    TV Ratings: Jussie Smollett's Final Episode of 'Empire' Season 5 Goes Low

    Last night, Jussie Smollett’s final episode of “Empire” season 5, and potentially his last episode on the show ever, went up in the ratings from previous weeks, but still posted low figures for the series. The episode, in which Smollett’s character Jamal Lyon tied the knot in TV’s first-ever black, gay wedding, returned a 1.1 [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content