Acorn TV Greenlights Murder Mystery Series From ‘Doc Martin’ Writer

Acorn TV has greenlit “Queens of Mystery,“ an offbeat drama series about a perennially single female detective and her three crime-writer aunts, who help her solve murders while setting her up on dates. The scripted series will be U.S. streamer Acorn TV’s latest original and will bow on its U.S. streaming service in 2019.

Julian Unthank, a writer on popular British dramas “Doc Martin“ and “New Tricks,“ created “Queens of Mystery.“ It will run as three feature-length episodes on Acorn TV and also be available as a six-part series. Unthank will write alongside Matthew Thomas (“The Rook“), and BAFTA-winning Ian Emes will direct the first two episodes.

U.K.-based Acorn Media Enterprises, Sly Fox Productions, and Ferncroft Media will make “Queens of Mystery.” Acorn Media International will distribute in English-speaking territories and ZDF Enterprises elsewhere. The producers said the show will be a contemporary murder mystery with “bold visuals, quirky characters, fast-paced dialogue and darkly comic murders.”

“With its fun characters, beautiful setting, and entertaining mysteries, ‘Queens of Mystery’ is exactly the kind of show our subscribers will love and is an ideal addition to our rapidly growing slate of original series,” said Mark Stevens, RLJ Entertainment’s chief content officer for Acorn.

Linda James, producer at Sly Fox Productions, added: “It’s a wonderful challenge to create a new detective series that feels fresh and different. With ‘Queens of Mystery,’ Julian has brought wit and verve to the genre that we’re sure will delight a global audience.”

Acorn TV expanded into Latin America this year and has been ramping up its original output with commissions including “London Kills,” “Sando,” and the second season of “Agatha Raisin.” Acorn TV does not break out subsriber numbers but claims to have more customers than its rival, the ITV- and BBC-operated Britbox, which is on track for 500,000 subscribers this year.

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