In a major deal that lit up the concluding hours of MipTV 2022, Canal Plus acquired BBC series “Rogue Heroes.”
Produced by Kudos and Nebulastar for the BBC, and titled “SAS Rogue Heroes” in the U.K. market, the series developed for television and written by Steven Knight (“Peaky Blinders”), is a dramatized account of how British Special Forces unit, the SAS, was formed under extraordinary circumstances in the darkest days of WWII.
In a deal negotiated by Isabelle Queme, senior VP French-speaking Europe, the Middle East and Africa at Banijay Rights, “Rogue Heroes” has been picked up by Canal Plus in France and for all Canal Plus territories around the world to broadcast in late 2022.
The agreement follows Epix’s acquisition of the drama for the U.S. in 2021 and further sales to HBO Max in Europe, Prime Video in Canada and SBS in Australia in early 2022.
Based on Ben Macintyre’s best-selling book, “Rogue Heroes” centers on David Stirling, an eccentric young officer who is hospitalized after a training exercise gone wrong. Convinced that traditional commando units don’t work, Stirling creates a radical plan that flies in the face of all accepted rules of modern warfare.
Connor Swindells (“Vigil”) will play Stirling, and the cast also includes Jack O’Connell (“Skins”), Dominic West (“The Crown”), Alfie Allen (“Jojo Rabbit”), Tom Glynn-Carney (“Dunkirk”) and Sofia Boutella (“Atomic Blonde”).
The series will be directed by Tom Shankland (“The Serpent”), with Stephen Smallwood (“Patrick Melrose”) as producer. It is executive produced by Karen Wilson, Martin Haines and Emma Kingsman-Lloyd for Kudos, and Tommy Bulfin for the BBC. It will premiere on BBC One and BBC iPlayer in the U.K.
Queme said: “Steven Knight and Kudos’ magnificent ‘Rogue Heroes’ continues to build huge momentum worldwide and we are beyond thrilled to secure this latest deal with Canal Plus; taking this epic — and important — Second World War story to a whole new audience across France and all Canal Plus territories around the world.”
Jean-Marc Juramie, senior executive VP, pay TV Content, Canal Plus Group, added: “We are thrilled to add this incredible event series from acclaimed writer Steven Knight to our line-up here at Canal Plus. Our subscribers from all over the world will discover this important Second World War story about extraordinary men, whose stories have been further elevated by this outstanding cast.”
Martin Haines, joint MD, Kudos, said: “‘Rogue Heroes’ is a truly ground-breaking series created by the fantastic Steven Knight, and we are delighted that audiences around the globe will have the opportunity to watch what will be unmissable TV.”