World sales company Global Screen has released the first-look image of “Recipes for Love and Murder,” which has been chosen for Berlinale Series Market Selects lineup at the European Film Market. Acorn has the rights to the series for the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Ireland, Australia and New Zealand.
The 10-part South African and U.K. English-language co-production stars Maria Doyle Kennedy, whose credits include “Outlander” and “The Tudors.”
“Recipes for Love and Murder,” described by Global Screen as “a charming, quirky murder mystery series,” is based on the novel by best-selling South African author Sally Andrew, “Recipes for Love and Murder: A Tannie Maria Mystery.” The novel has been published in numerous countries including the U.K., South Africa, the U.S., Canada, China, Australia, France and Germany.
Filmed in South Africa and Scotland, the series centers on Maria Purvis (Kennedy), an empathetic, accomplished recipe advice columnist for a small-town gazette, who investigates the murder of one of her correspondents. The show will premiere in South Africa on M-Net this March.
“Recipes for Love and Murder” is a co-production between M-Net, AMC Networks’ Acorn TV and Both Worlds Pictures, in co-operation with Global Screen.
Thierry Cassuto (“Puppet Nation,” “Rainbow Warrior”), founder of International Emmy-nominated Cape Town-based Both Worlds Pictures, is producing the series in collaboration with Scotland’s Pirate Productions, with development support provided by Creative Scotland, and Paris-based Paradoxal.
The show was adapted for TV by Karen Jeynes (“Puppet Nation,” “Point of Order”), who is also executive producer, along with Scotland-based writer/director Annie Griffin (“Avenue 5”). The series is directed by Christiaan Olwagen (“Kanarie,” “Poppie Nongena”) and Karen Jeynes. As well as Doyle Kennedy, the cast includes Tony Kgoroge (“Invictus,” “Blood Diamond”) and newcomer Kylie Fisher.
In the show, Martine, a woman who has written to Maria about her abusive husband, is found dead. Maria joins forces with her local, risk-taking, rookie journalist colleague, Jessie September (Fisher), to solve the murder and catch the killer – before the local police find more victims.
Between cooking rich mutton curry, decadent chocolate cake, answering letters and getting in the way of the local policemen, Maria and Jessie are determined to solve this murder mystery and catch the killer. But the killer might be following their traces just as quickly as they are hunting him.
Dana Höfinger-Lenz, VP, international acquisitions and co-productions at Global Screen, commented: “Set in the beautiful landscape of South Africa’s Karoo and in Scotland, ‘Recipes for Love and Murder’ combines stunning locations, culinary arts and quirky characters.” Höfinger-Lenz added that in the midst of the pandemic, “audiences worldwide are craving escapist premium programs that help us forget our demanding and often restricted daily lives and whisk us away to places of longing.”
Thierry Cassuto, executive producer and founder of Both Worlds Pictures, said: “This story is part romance, part small town comedy, part celebration of cooking but above all a murder mystery set in a region of South Africa few people around the world have seen before, with a distinctive look and tone made possible by the unique depth and diversity of talent available in this part of the continent.”
Episodes 1 and 2 of “Recipes for Love and Murder” will premiere at Berlinale Series Market Selects at screenings on Feb. 15 at 3.30 p.m. and Feb. 17 at 12 p.m.