U.K. broadcaster ITV has commissioned “Line of Duty” and “Bodyguard” creator Jed Mercurio’s HTM Television to produce crime thriller series “Payback” with BritBox International as co-production partner.
The six-part series stars Morven Christie (“The Bay”), Peter Mullan (“The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power”), Prasanna Puwanarajah (“Ten Percent”) and Derek Riddell (“Industry”).
Written by Debbie O’Malley (“Call the Midwife”), “Payback” follows Lexie Noble (Christie) as she becomes entangled in a police operation to topple a notorious crime lord, Cal Morris (Mullan). The drama will be filmed in Glasgow, Edinburgh and surrounding areas.
Christie said: “I fell in love with Lexie from the first page, and I’m absolutely delighted to be working with Peter and this wonderful team in my hometown.”
“Payback” was commissioned by ITV head of drama Polly Hill.
Hill said: ” ‘Payback is a brilliant thriller which questions how well you know your partner and as the secrets come out, asks who you can trust. Debbie has written compelling scripts that will keep the audience hooked and surprised.”
Mercurio will executive produce the series, alongside Madonna Baptiste, O’Malley and Diederick Santer on behalf of BritBox International.
Baptiste and Mercurio said: “Working with Debbie has been a joy, and everyone at HTM is proud to bring her thrillingly propulsive crime series to screen. We are very excited to announce a stellar line up of acting talent and pleased to be working with immensely talented directors and production team.”
“Payback” will be directed by Jennie Darnell (“Trigger Point”) and Andrew Cumming (“Clique”) and produced by Eric Coulter (“The Control Room”).
O’Malley said: “I’m delighted to be working with such a high-calibre team at HTM Television and a truly superb cast to bring Lexie Noble’s story to life. Following our ordinary wife and mother through the loopholes and increasingly grey areas of fiscal malpractice, into the murky world of organized crime, ‘Payback’ poses the disconcerting question: just how far might any of us go, if we thought we could get away with it?”
BritBox International will be the exclusive home to the series in the U.S., Canada, Australia, South Africa, Denmark, Sweden, Finland and Norway.
BritBox International CEO Santer said: “When I read the first ‘Payback’ script, I could just not put it down. Debbie has created a uniquely propulsive and exciting story full of vivid characters. This dynamic drama will have BritBox audiences all over the world on the edge of their seats, just as I was when I first read it.”
The BritBox deal was negotiated by Hat Trick International, which also represents the show globally.