You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Danielle Dajani, Tara Cook Join ‘Downton Abbey’ Producer Carnival Films

Phil Temple promoted to development producer at NBCU-owned production company

LONDON — Carnival Films, the London-based production company behind “Downton Abbey,” has appointed Danielle Dajani as its head of production, and Tara Cook as development producer, working alongside Phil Temple, who has been promoted and also serves as development producer.

Dajani joins Carnival, which is part of NBCUniversal Intl. Television Production, from Raleigh Studios in Los Angeles, where she was exec VP. Before Raleigh, Dajani was VP of international physical production and production finance at Walt Disney Pictures in L.A., head of production at Aramid Capital in London, and general manager of Village Roadshow Production Management in Sydney.

Dajani takes over from Kimberley Hikaka, who departs after nearly seven years at Carnival.

In the role, Dajani will be responsible for overseeing all of the company’s productions across its U.K. and international businesses.

As development producers, Cook and Temple will be responsible for the origination, development and sale of Carnival’s upcoming U.K. and international slates.

Cook previously co-produced the first two series of “Call the Midwife,” having developed the show whilst head of development at Sam Mendes’ Neal Street Productions, where she executive produced “Stuart: A Life Backwards,” and worked across feature films such as “Things We Lost in the Fire,” “Starter for Ten” and “Road to Perdition.” Recently Cook has been developing a number of projects as an independent producer, including “Lawless” with ShondaLand/ABC.

Cook and Temple will report to Gareth Neame, managing director/executive producer, and will be supported by Claire Daxter, development editor.

Founded in 1978, Carnival has produced over 500 hours of drama, such as “Downton Abbey,” “Dracula,” starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers, co-production “The Hollow Crown,” David Nicholls’ “The 7:39,” David Hare’s “Worricker Trilogy,” William Boyd’s “Any Human Heart,” Helena Bonham Carter starrer “Enid” as well as miniseries “Traffik” and long-running favorites “Poirot” and “Rosemary & Thyme.”

“Downton Abbey” has won two Golden Globes and 10 Primetime Emmy awards, and is the most nominated non-U.S. show in the history of the Emmys with 51 nominations.

Carnival recently announced that it is teaming with BBC America on new series “The Last Kingdom” for the BBC, as well as “Nostradamus,” which it will produce with Joseph Fiennes and Anonymous Content.

Carnival’s drama “The Lost Honor of Christopher Jefferies” is set to air on U.K. commercial network ITV later this year. Based on the true story of a retired schoolmaster wrongly suspected of murder, the screenplay was penned by Peter Morgan, Oscar nominated for “Frost/Nixon” and “The Queen.” Jefferies will be played by Jason Watkins (“Being Human,” “Psychoville,” “Little Dorrit”).

More TV

  • Keli LeeStep Up Women Network 9th

    Keli Lee Exits ABC Studios International as Disney Considers Division's Fate (EXCLUSIVE)

    ABC veteran Keli Lee has left the international arm of ABC Studios as Disney considers the future of the London-based content unit, Variety has learned. Sources said Disney has told the creative community that there “has been a re-evaluation of ABC Studios International” and that it is re-assessing “the creative direction” of the business. There [...]

  • Biggest Scandals Feuds and Apologies of

    Biggest Scandals, Feuds and Apologies of 2019

    Variety looks back on some of the biggest scandals, feuds and apologies of 2019: College Admissions Scandal Wealthy parents including Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin were charged with bribing school officials to get their unqualified kids into prestigious universities. Shane Gillis Executives at “SNL” hired, then fired, Gillis in September, before the new season started, [...]

  • Biggest Media Moments of 2019

    From 'Catch & Kill' to Shepard Smith: The Biggest Media Moments of 2019

    Variety looks back on some of the most memorable media events of 2019: ‘Catch & Kill’ Reopens Wounds at NBC News Ronan Farrow’s book relitigates his complaints that NBC News tried to tamp down his investigation of harassment and assault allegations against Harvey Weinstein. NBC News denies the claim. The book contains new allegations against [...]

  • Reno 911

    'Reno 911!' Revival Set at Quibi

    The classic Comedy Central series “Reno 911!” is being revived at Quibi for a seventh season. The original series ran from 2003 to 2009. Original series creators and cast members Robert Ben Garant, Thomas Lennon, and Kerri Kenney-Silver are attached to write and star in the new season. Peter Principato of Artists First will executive [...]

  • 8/23/19Executive Producer Vin Di Bona, Executive

    From YouTube to TikTok, 'AFV' Embraces Emerging Platforms to Stay on Top at 30

    Even as technology caught up to ABC’s “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” the 30-year-old clip show found a way to co-exist with online viral videos. “We’ve worked with YouTube and Snapchat and other platforms to embrace how we can utilize what we do and what they do,” says “AFV” creator Vin Di Bona. Since it began [...]

  • The Two Popes Netflix

    'Two Popes' Walk Into Abbey Road Recording Studio (No Joke)

    The soundtrack to Netflix’s “The Two Popes” is the tonally diverse product of Grammy Award-winning musician Bryce Dessner who was tasked by director Fernando Meirelles to score the film, generating large-scale cinematic energy to unseen, intimate moments between religious figures.  Scheduled for release on Friday, Dec. 20, “The Two Popes” explores the friendship between Pope [...]

  • Isabella Gomez Says Auditions 'Dwindled' After

    Isabella Gomez Says Auditions 'Dwindled' After 'One Day At A Time'

    Actress Isabella Gomez claims she started receiving less auditions once it became known she was Latina after starring as Elena Alvarez in “One Day at a Time.”  “It’s interesting because I am white passing. So, when I got here people didn’t know I was Latina. I was going out all the time, getting call backs [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content