Fox Networks Group has set five-part financial thriller “Trading Floor” as its first foray in Asia into high-end original miniseries production.
The move underscores a global trend towards investment in and production of premium series by pay-TV groups and leading over-the-top streaming video platforms. The objective is to reinforce branding, to attract and retain subscribers through unique content, and, through a stamp of quality, to attract creative talent.
Like leading shows in North America and the U.K., “Trading Floor” will make use of feature-film talent behind and in front of the camera. The show is produced by Andy Lau’s Focus Television and is Focus’s first miniseries. A mainland Chinese partner is in negotiations and expected to join shortly.
Now in pre-production, with intended delivery by the end of the year, the show is scripted and directed by KK Wong, director and producer of 2014 Hong Kong TV hit show “The Election.” It will be broadcast on SCM, Fox Networks’ Asia-wide Chinese movie channel, and made available to subscribers on a day and date basis on Fox+, the group’s new OTT platform.
Fox Networks is expected to unveil details of another series, crime thriller “Stained,” later this week at Hong Kong’s FilMart. Written and directed by Patrick Kong, the show stars Anthony Wong (“Infernal Affairs”), Kara Hui (“Mrs K”) and Tse Kwan-ho.
Both series were developed over the past two years by Cora Yim, head of Chinese entertainment and territory head of Hong Kong for Fox Networks Group, adopting methodology, such as a writers’ room, learned from successful premium shows from Hollywood.
“These have been a long time coming, but we believe that the kicking off of premium Chinese miniseries production is a testament to our commitment to providing the best stories through TV shows, movies, documentaries and sports,” Yim said, adding that the focus would be on cast, story and high-end production values.
“Inspired by the FX Network series production model, where success comes from their relationships with the best creative talent, our strategy is also to partner with the best talent, top filmmakers and producers to produce premium miniseries,” Yim said. “We also see this strategy as empowering storytelling and taking our relationships to the next level.”
The group is currently at early-stage development of other miniseries, with the objective of green-lighting two new shows per year. Each would range from 3 to 10 episodes per project and be shot in 4K.
In addition to the miniseries, FNGA is also working with V Plus in South Korea to develop a Korean drama series that would be a remake of “Go Princess Go.” And it is developing other Mandarin-language contemporary drama series.