“Roma” producer Nicolas Celis’ series debut “Perfect Monsters,” Nabil Ayouch’s “Blackout” and Cinenord’s “Ice Valley” were announced as the three winners of this year’s In Development Drama Producers’ Pitch section, run collaboratively by MipTV and Canneseries.
In Development is dedicated to the development and promotion of new international TV productions from established and new talents alike. A potentially major launchpad for the still-young projects, the pitching sessions saw 12 projects selected by members of the In Development advisory board. This year, 376 projects were submitted for consideration from 41 countries.
Participating projects pitched to often packed audiences of industry professionals. Three were selected for prizes handed out by In Development’s official partners: Federation Entertainment (“The Bureau”), which offers to co-develop, co-produce and distribute one of the selected projects, and French think tank “La Fabrique des Formats” and its investment fund, which offers financing for up to two series from the selection which feature at least one French producer or co-producer.
In “Perfect Monsters” 16 year-old Miroslavo runs away after his parents are murdered. He is eventually picked up by arms dealer Hansen. The two begin an ambivalent neo-father-son relationship which is closer than what Miro had with his biological father. Hansen teaches the boy the ropes of the gun-running industry and that to survive they must always shoot first. Obsessed with finding his parents killers, Miro begins to develop schizophrenia, although he is completely unaware.
The series is produced by Telegrama Audiovisual, Tita Productions and “Roma” producer Nicolás Celis’ Pimienta films producers Enrique Rizo and Marion d’Ornano. D’Ornano originated the project, based on an Argentine novel of the same name by best-selling writer Miguel Ángel Molfino.
Taking place over one night – eight hours in eight hour episodes – “Blackout,” from Nabil Ayouch (“Horses of God,” “Much Loved,” “Razzia”), one of the foremost Arab World filmmakers, is a near-future story on the Ceuta/Moroccan border, in a time when the barrier fence will have been electrified. When a large power outage takes out the wall’s juice, the thousands of migrants camping outside converge on the city. The narrative will mix action and character introspection, focusing on six characters.
The series is being put together by Nabil Ayouch’s Paris-based Les Films du Nouveau Monde and Casablanca label “Ali N’ Productions – which backed his two previous films “Razzia,” a 2017 Toronto Platform premiere and Moroccan Academy Award entry, and upcoming “We Will Be Reborn,” a realist hip-hop musical.
“Ice Valley” follows two university students, Thea and Amir, who are investigating the disappearance of their housemate Ida while she was hiking in the haunted Ice Valley. The valley then becomes cursed when a black metal group performs a black mass, and a chain of bizarre and frightening events kick off. Eventually a young woman matching Ida’s description perfectly is found in the glaciers, but the frozen cadaver is a century old.
The fantastic series was created by Cindy Hanson and Silje Hopland Eik, and co-written by Hanson and Sofia Lersol. The series is produced by Norwegian production house Cinenord’s Hopland Eik along with Anni Faurbye Fernandez and Moa Weteson.