×
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

  • NEW YORK, NY – JUNE, 24:

    LGBTQ Stars Honored at Variety’s Power of Pride Celebration

    New York City felt the full power of pride on Monday, as Variety celebrated its inaugural issue devoted to the annual recognition of LGBTQ people worldwide. At an intimate gathering at lower east side Manhattan hotel The Orchid, rooftop bar Mr. Purple hosted Variety’s cover stars and luminaries for cocktails and the unveiling of the [...]

  • WWE

    WWE and PP Sports Extend China Partnership

    WWE and PP Sports have signed a new multi-year agreement that will keep WWE programming airing live in Mandarin in China. In the past three years of the partnership, PP Sports has delivered more than 300 episodes of WWE programming. PP Sports will offer, “Raw,” “Smackdown, and the WWE Network as a subscription VOD service [...]

  • Billy Eichner Power of Pride Variety

    Billy Eichner on Taylor Swift's 'Calm Down' Backlash

    When Taylor Swift released her “You Need to Calm Down” music video, it seemed like every member of the LGBTQ in Hollywood was included — except for Billy Eichner. “I’m still not gay enough for Taylor Swift — or too gay — I don’t know what it is,” Eichner joked at Variety’s Power of Pride [...]

  • HIGHWIRE LIVE IN TIMES SQUARE WITH

    TV News Roundup: 'Highwire Live in Times Square' Tops Sunday Night Ratings

    In today’s TV news roundup, ABC’s “Highwire Live in Times Square” tops Sunday night ratings, and “Total Bellas” has been renewed for a fifth season. DATES FX will air the special event “Peabody Presents: Stories of the Year” on July 7. The program will showcase the issues honored at the 78th Annual Peabody Awards Ceremony [...]

  • Editorial use only. No book cover

    'Scream' Series Moves From MTV to VH1 for July Debut

    The long-gestating third season of the “Scream” series is finally debuting–but not on its original network. Variety has confirmed that the series will air on VH1 instead of MTV as originally planned. “Scream” will debut on VH1 on July 8 and air two one-hour episodes back-to-back for three straight nights. The third season of the [...]

  • Jussie Smollett

    Video of Jussie Smollett With Rope Around His Neck Released by Chicago Police

    The Chicago Police Department released new surveillance footage and files in regards to the Jussie Smollett hoax case on Monday, including one that shows the “Empire” actor shortly after the alleged attack. In one of the videos, police body-cam footage shows authorities entering Smollett’s Chicago apartment, led by his manager, Frank Gatson. Smollett is found [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content